The leading roles from the operas of Puccini and Verdi have been the perfect fit for Mr. Harris throughout his career. He has been widely praised as both “a baritone with incredible dramatic intensity and enormous versatility”, from his impassioned operatic performances to his sensitive treatment of the song repertoire. Mr. Harris's greatest passion is communication, evident both in his dedication to conveying the profound meaning of each piece he approaches, and in his efforts to help young artists and even individuals with autism find their voice.
“Established overnight as an important new Verdi baritone”, Mr. Harris's career spans over 30 years. His signature roles are Scarpia in Tosca and the title role in Rigoletto. Other roles include: Count di Luna (Il Trovatore), Germont (La Traviata), Tonio (I Pagliacci), Amonasro (Aida), Escamillo (Carmen), Marcello (La Boheme), the High Priest (Samson & Dalila), the title role in Macbeth, George (Of Mice and Men), Iago (Otello), Sacco (Sacco e Vanzetti), Renato (Un Ballo in Maschera), as well as world and US premieres of several new operas by contemporary composers. His oratorio repertoire includes: Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Handel’s Messiah, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Bernstein’s Mass, Songfest, and Candide.
Mr. Harris’s performances in opera houses around the world have earned him accolades for his rich baritone voice. He captured both First Prize and the coveted Audience Favorite Award in the 2008 Altamura/Caruso International Voice Competition. The New York Times critic Bernard Holland hailed Mr. Harris as a “major voice”. His portrayal of Rigoletto earned him critical acclaim in the form of an OperaOnline nomination for Best Leading Male Performance (Connecticut Grand Opera).
Mr. Harris’s audiences include diplomats and heads of state from every continent including Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, Ambassador Fernando M. Valenzuela, Head of the Delegation of the European Commission to the United Nations, and the United Nations Women for Peace.
Mr. Harris’s performance venues include: Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center's Merkin Recital Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, The Straz Center for the Performing Arts (Tampa), The Paramount Theater (Abilene), Detroit Opera House, Kimmel Center (Philadelphia), Lila Cockrell Theater (San Antonio), Blaisdell Concert Hall (Honolulu), Teatro Pablo de Villa Vincencio (Culiacan, Mexico), Teatro Angela Peralta (Mazatlan, Mexico), Teatrino Campana (Osimo, Italy), and Teatro Cocumella (Sorrento, Italy),
Mr. Harris has been featured on radio, television, film, and internet (CNN, ESPN, CBC/Radio-Canada, OperaOnline, Yahoo.com). Of Choctaw ancestry, he performed in concert in the PBS production, "Common Ground", where he shared the stage with other Native Americans in a celebration of music and art of America's Indigenous People. A former NFL lineman for the Houston Oilers, Mr. Harris stepped back on the NFL field in the 2012 season with his highly acclaimed rendition of the "Star Spangled Banner" for the World Champion Green Bay Packers.
In 2013 Harris released his new CD recording, "Romanze": songs by Francesco Paolo Tosti, for worldwide distribution.
Appointed Artist-in-Residence for the Altamura/Caruso Foundation, he encourages the work of young artists in their journey by sharing in their preparation, and, on occasion, the performance stage. In addition, Mr. Harris employs his formidable vocal talents in remediating deficits in timbre, volume, melody, and rhythm in the speech of individuals with autism.