Bass Joshua Bloom is a citizen of Australia, the United States of America, and Great Britain, and has sung principal roles with San Francisco Opera, the Royal Opera House – Covent Garden, Wiener Staatsoper, English National Opera, Oper Köln, LA Opera, Opera Australia, New York’s Metropolitan Opera, Washington National Opera, Garsington Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Badisches Staatstheater, Irish National Opera and New Israeli Opera, among others.
He has also appeared on the concert stage with the Berlin Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic, all of the major London orchestras, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Britten Sinfonia, the Auckland Philharmonia and the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group as well as the Melbourne, Queensland, Adelaide and Western Australian Symphonies.
In the 2021/22 season, Bloom will return to Opera Köln as Ratefreund in a new production of Die Vögel, and Vodnik in their acclaimed production of Rusalka. He returns to the New Israeli Opera as both Ramfis and the King in Aida. Future plans include a house debut at Opera National de Paris as Henry Kissinger in Adams’ Nixon in China, in a new production conducted by Gustavo Dudamel. Bloom will also perform Rambo in The Death of Klinghoffer at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, in a concert performance conducted by John Adams. He will make house debuts with Opera de Lille, and in Rouen, and will return to San Francisco to work with Philharmonia Baroque.
Highlights of recent seasons include performances of The Garden by Richard Ayres, the opera written for him for solo Bass, Orchestra, and Electronics, both in the premiere with the London Sinfonietta and Asko Schoenberg and at New Days Opera in Ostrava; Tutor in Rossini Le Comte Ory with Garsington Opera for Cal McCrystal’s new production; Méphistophélès in Berlioz Le Damnation de Faust, with Edward Gardner at the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra; Hunding in Wagner Die Walküre with Graeme Jenkins in Lisbon; The Ghost of Old Hamlet/Gravedigger in a new production of Brett Dean’s acclaimed Hamlet; Faraone in Rossini’s virtuosic Mosè in Egitto for Oper Köln; Swallow in Britten Peter Grimes for the International Enescu Festival; Bottom in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, with English National Opera in the iconic Robert Carsen production; title role in Bartok Bluebeard’s Castle, in a new production by Enda Walsh; a house debut at the Royal Opera House in the world premiere production of Gerald Barry Alice’s Adventures Underground, followed quickly by Richard Jones’ new production of La Clemenza di Tito; and Kaspar in Der Freischütz in the International Hyogo Festival of the Performing Arts, Japan.
Joshua appears on NMC’s Grammy nominated recording of Gerald Barry’s The Importance of Being Earnest, conducted by Thomas Adès; the New York Philharmonic’s live recording of Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen, conducted by Alan Gilbert; The Metropolitan Opera’s HD Broadcast of Mozart’s Don Giovanni, conducted by Fabio Luisi; the Berlin Philharmonic’s Digital Concert Hall broadcast of Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre, and the LSO Live recording of Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande both conducted by Sir Simon Rattle.
Joshua was born in Australia to musician parents and studied cello and double-bass as well as being a chorister at St Paul’s Cathedral, Melbourne. He went on to study History at the University of Melbourne and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts.
His professional debut in opera was in an OzOpera touring production of The Barber of Seville, after which he joined the Young Artist Programme of Opera Australia in Sydney, and later the Merola and Adler Fellowship Programmes at the San Francisco Opera.
NTR Zaterdag Matinee, Concertgebouw
Adams: The Death of Klinghoffer (Rambo)
Conducted by John Adams
June 3 2023
Opéra National de Paris
Adams: Nixon in China (Henry Kissinger)
Conducted by Gustavo Dudamel
Directed by Valentina Carrasco
March 22, 25, 29, April 1, 4, 7, 10, 12, 16 2023
Philharmonia Baroque, San Francisco
Conducted by Richard Egarr
December 14, 15, 17, 18 2022
New Israeli Opera
Verdi: Aida (Ramfis & Il Re)
Conducted by Giuliano Carella
June & July 2022
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Bach: St John Passion (Pilate & Arias)
Conducted by Jeannette Sorrell
April 14 2022
Dvořák: Rusalka (Vodnik)
Conducted by Constantin Trinks
Directed by Nadja Loschky
March 6, 10, 12, 18, 20 2022
Welsh National Opera
Mozart: Don Giovanni (Leporello)
Conducted by Tobias Ringborg
Directed by John Caird
Various Dates February through May 2022
Braunfels: Die Vögel (Ratefreund)
Conducted by Gabriel Feltz
Directed by Nadja Loschky
December 5, 10, 12, 15, 18 2021, January 6, 8, 13 2022
London Philharmonic Orchestra
Tipett: Midsummer Marriage (He Ancient)
Conducted Edward Gardner
September 25 2022
The part of the demagogue Ratefreund was cast brilliantly by the extremely charismatic Joshua Bloom. He was vocally very convincing, sonorous and agile – his captivating charm did not fail to have an effect on the audience, supported by a brilliant characterization, which showed him not so much as a dangerous sinister seducer, but as a thoroughly charmingly sketched figure, who made one laugh again and again, although the plot as such is not actually a laughing matter. He also threw himself completely into his role – and to general amusement he even beat up the henchmen in the final thunderstorm with a bird fetus that had fallen out of a broken egg.
Joshua Bloom as Ratefreund, an internationally renowned bass, seduces the birds into founding their “cloud cuckoo home” and persuades them that they are superior to humans and gods. As a Rossini expert, he also masters the complicated coloratura demanded of him by the score and mutates into the head of government of the bird state with an applied wing arm. His charisma is totally winning.
The extraordinary Vodnik [is portrayed] by the Australian bass Joshua Bloom, [in possession of] a full voice, superbly timbred and projected, superlative in expression.
In Nadja Loschky’s production, the Nazi allusions seem completely natural and not forced. But this is also due to the shrewd charm of the Ratefreund, powerfully voiced by Joshua Bloom, whose Nimbus (to use a term by Gustave Le Bon) also catches on with the audience. The really funny slapstick interludes, sometimes verging on the grotesque, encourage laughter, which, however, immediately gets stuck in the throat when one becomes aware of the depicted social process.
The opera is opened by the Vodnik, impressively placed below the waterline by the grave-deep bass of Australian Joshua Bloom. He slips into the wizened costume of the snivelling ruler, always ready to warn or curse sonorously.
[Bloom] would have graced any production in the world. [His] Figaro was the vocal star of the evening, delivering his arias with a dark, virile bass sound, immaculate diction and pugilistic rhythmic attack.
Hugh Canning, Opera
One could not have possibly imagined two better interpreters than Joshua Bloom and Paula Murrihy for the roles of Bluebeard and Judith. Bloom was a tormented Bluebeard, with a wonderfully dark bass. Faithful to both text and score, he aroused pity rather than fear and indignation.
Pia Maltri, Bachtrack
I have never known a Figaro like Joshua Bloom’s – a gale-force character with a thunderous sound… both comic and touching thanks to brilliant acting.
Michael Church, The Independent
Bass Joshua Bloom, and mezzo-soprano Paula Murrihy, are both outstanding, mastering the demands of singing in Hungarian as if it were a second language, as well as negotiating the demands of Bartok’s endless recitativo. Bloom, like a weakened panther, is awaiting his moments, striking with power and precision when they arrive.
Chris O’Rourke, The Arts Review
…a wonderfully controlled and methodically crafted Figaro, his huge vocal capacity never once overwhelming his musical intellect. When challenging the Count’s proprietorial assumptions, Bloom’s voice was indignantly resonant; but when, in Act 4, Figaro believed himself duped and betrayed, Figaro was endowed with a credible vulnerability, which tempered Bloom’s sturdy bass. Bloom has presence, panache and vocal power: a winning triplet.
Claire Seymour, Opera Today
Duke Bluebeard was well characterised by Joshua Bloom. His warm timbre was underpinned by a steely defiance that managed not only to be menacing, but seductive and even loving, particularly when describing the qualities of his three previous wives. The results were thrilling and chilling.
Armed with a physically relaxed presence and a rich, beautifully produced bass, Joshua Bloom pulls off the considerable trick of tastefully playing a character who has no taste. It’s easy to go for broke as Bottom but Bloom stays truthful while maximising laughs.
David Benedict, The Arts Desk
Outstanding in quality is Bloom’s grandiose Bottom.
George Hall, The Stage
As Faraone, Joshua Bloom has a dark and powerful bass that radiates enormous authority. He shines in his extraordinary aria in the first act.
Thomas Molke, Online Musik Magazine
Vocally, the cast is of a class better class than the Bregenz competition. This is true in particular of the Pharaoh of Joshua Bloom with his powerful bass.
Pedro Obiera, Aachener Nachrichten
Joshua Bloom lit up the stage whenever he was on it.
Michael White, The New York Times