Chris Gillett Photography 2018 (detail)
An alumnus of LA Opera’s Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program and The Santa Fe Opera’s Apprentice Program for Singers, tenor Rafael Moras is a 2019 Dallas Opera Guild Vocal Competition semifinalist, 2017 and 2018 recipient of The Santa Fe Opera's Richard Tucker Fund Award, a 2014 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Grand Finalist, 2014 Operalia quarterfinalist, and a 2013 and 2014 finalist in Houston Grand Opera's Eleanor McCollum Competition.
In 2016, Rafael was heard as Rodolfo in La bohème at the Aspen Music Festival. Of his performance, Opera News said “[Rafael Moras] escaped all of the tempting tenorial clichés to create a fully fleshed-out characterization. His singing remained warm and ingratiating, from low note to high, from first scene to last.”
Past highlights include Flavio in LA Opera’s Norma, Pong in Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra's Turandot under Gustavo Dudamel, Pedrillo in Houston Symphony’s Die Entführung aus rem Serail, and the tenor soloist in Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Beethoven Choral Fantasia under Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla and in LA Opera's Petite messe solennelle under Plácido Domingo.
Rafael obtained his Bachelor of Music Degree at The University of Texas at San Antonio and a Masters in Vocal Performance at Rice University's Shepherd School of Music. Rafael was a featured singer in the 2010 HBO documentary "Masterclass with Plácido Domingo," was part of the inaugural class of the Young Artist Vocal Academy with Houston Grand Opera, trained as a Studio Artist at Wolf Trap Opera, and has performed around the world as a soloist with Grammy Award-winning jazz trumpeter Chris Botti.
2018-2019 included a company debut with Dallas Opera as Remendado in Carmen, Nemorino from L’elisir d’amore in Santa Fe Opera's Apprentice Scene Showcase, YoungArts' "Pop of Culture with Plácido Domingo", Lyric Opera of Chicago - Lyric Unlimited's "Caribe Clásico", and a return to Santa Fe for "The Santa Fe Opera Winter Concert Tour".
Rafael's 2019-2020 has so far featured company debuts with Houston Grand Opera as Father Matías in the world premiere of El Milagro del Recuerdo, with Utah Opera as Alfredo in La traviata, with Sacramento Philharmonic & Opera as the Duke of Mantua in Rigoletto, and with Anima Mundi Productions as Gabrielito in the world premiere concert opera Dreams Have No Borders. In February 2020, Rafael was featured in recital with pianist Rachel Chao in his native San Antonio, Texas, as part of the Tuesday Musical Club's 2019-2020 Artist Series. This May, he will return to the Houston Symphony as the Tenor I Soloist in Beethoven's Choral Fantasy under the leadership of Fabien Gabel for "Beethoven + López."
In 2020-2021, Rafael will make company debuts with Arizona Opera as Father Matías in El Milagro del Recuerdo and with Opera Philadelphia as Malcom in Macbeth.