“In arias from Handel’s ‘Orlando' and Bellini’s 'La Sonnambula,' he displayed musical taste, honest execution of Handelian ornaments and bel canto filigree, and a solid voice.”

— The New York Times

Heralded by the New York Times for “musical taste, honest execution of Handelian ornaments and bel canto filigree, and a solid voice,” William Guanbo Su is a 2019 Metropolitan Opera Laffont Competition Grand Finals winner.

In the 2022-23 season, he returns to the Metropolitan Opera as the Speaker in the company’s beloved English presentation of The Magic Flute, Austin Opera for Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia, and Houston Grand Opera for the First Nazarene in Salome. He makes role debuts as Blitch in Susannah for Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and Colline in La bohème in his debut with Boston Lyric Opera. Future seasons see further returns to Houston Grand Opera. Last season, in his final year of the company’s prestigious Studio, he sang Zuniga in Carmen, the First Officer in Dialogues des Carmélites, Second Armed Man in Die Zauberflöte—while also being responsible for Sarastro, Mandarin in Turandot—while also being responsible for Timur, and the Duke of Verona in Roméo et Juliette. He also made his Metropolitan Opera debut as the Jailer in Tosca and, in the summer was a member of the Académie Vocal Residence at the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence at which he sang the Demon in Pergolesi’s Li prodigi della divina grazia nella conversione e more di San Guglielmo Duca di Aquitaina with Les Talent Lyriques.

While a member of the Houston Grand Opera Studio, he also sang excerpts of Enrico in Anna Bolena and the Commendatore in Don Giovanni in the Studio Showcase and later presented Schumann’s Liederkreis Op. 39 in recital. He made his company debut as the Usher in Rigoletto; his performances of Sparafucile in outdoor presentations of the opera were cancelled by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr. Su has sang Angelotti in Tosca with Austin Opera and Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte, Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia, and Garibaldo in Rodelinda, all role debuts, at the Aspen Music Festival. As an ambassador for Opera for Peace, he sang Verdi’s “O tu Palermo” from I vespri siciliani for that organization’s digital concert celebrating World Opera Day 2020. He is a former Gerdine Young Artist of the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, at which he sang Count Ceprano in Rigoletto and covered Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro. He joined Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Lyric Unlimited for its production of Perla’s An American Dream. While at The Juilliard School, he sang the Commendatore in Don Giovanni and Pluton in Hippolyte et Aricie.

His performances of Handel’s Messiah with the Portland Baroque Orchestra and Beethoven’s Mass in C in the 2019-20 season were also cancelled due to the pandemic. He made his recent Carnegie Hall debut with the Cecilia Chorus of New York singing Bach’s Christmas Oratorio and returned to the famed stage a year later for Handel’s Messiah with the same organization.

In addition to winning the Metropolitan Opera Laffont CompetitionGrand Finals, Mr. Su won second prize in the Eleanor McCollum Competition at Houston Grand Opera. He won first prize in the Liederkranz Foundation’s Song/Lieder Competition in 2017 and, in 2018, received third prize in the Gerda Lissner Opera Competition.

William Guanbo Su received his Master of Music degree from The Juilliard School and his Bachelor of Music Degree from the Manhattan School of Music. He completed further studies at the Franz Schubert Institute in Austria.