Opera star Mark S. Doss in 'Do-It-Yourself Messiah'

December 20, 2011 (CHICAGO)

Do-It-Yourself Messiah
Harris Theatre
205 E. Randolph Drive, Chicago
(312) 334-7777
7 p.m. Tuesday


Grammy Award winner Mark S. Doss returns to Chicago as soloist in Do-It-Yourself Messiah

Global opera star Mark S. Doss is returning to the Chicago stage next month as the bass soloist in Handel's Do-It-Yourself Messiah, one of Chicago's most beloved holiday traditions. Celebrating its 25th year, this season's performances take place on December 19 and 20, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. CT at the Harris Theatre for Music and Dance in Millennium Park.

Mr. Doss arrives in Chicago after starring as Thoas in the Canadian Opera Company's fall production of Iphigenia in Tauris (Iphigenie en Tauride). Last month, Mr. Doss received Planet Africa's 2011 Entertainment Award, recognizing his many achievements over a successful career spanning more than 25 years in the performing arts, and as a positive role model for youths. The Grammy Award-winning bass-baritone has performed over 60 roles with 55 of the world's most prestigious opera houses, including Milan's famed Teatro alla Scala and The Vienna State Opera.

"It is extremely rewarding to be returning to Chicago and the wonderfully collaborative Do-It-Yourself Messiah once again this year," says the Grammy Award-winning performer. "There is nothing more festive than joining together with a world-class conductor and soloists, an all-volunteer orchestra of local musicians, and thousands of people from Chicago and surrounding areas in a thrilling performance of Handel's masterpiece."

Chicago is proud to think of Mark S. Doss as one of its own. After studying at Indiana University with Walter Cassel and Nicola Rossi-Lemeni, he became an apprentice artist with the Santa Fe Opera, which led to him becoming a member of what was formerly known as Chicago's Lyric Opera Center for American Artists. He has since delighted Chicago audiences for more than a quarter century, including performances in 10 seasons at Lyric Opera of Chicago since 1984 as well as doing concerts and recitals for the Lyric Opera Chapters. In addition to past performances of Messiah, Mr. Doss has appeared at Lyric Opera of Chicago as Cinque in Amistad, Alidoro in La Cenerentola (Cinderella) and Escamillo in Carmen.

Following the Do-It-Yourself Messiah in Chicago, Mr. Doss has upcoming performances as the title role in Wagner's The Flying Dutchman with Teatro Regio Torino in 2012, and The Four Villains in Offenbach's The Tales of Hoffmann with Opera Tokyo in 2013.

You can connect with Mark S. Doss through his Facebook fan page:(www.facebook.com/home.php#!/pages/Mark-S-Doss/78423203990) or follow him @marksdoss on Twitter (http://twitter.com/marksdoss).

Originally intended as an Easter oratorio, Handel's Messiah tells the story of Jesus' birth and life. Over the years, however, it has become more popularly associated with Christmas. The "do-it-yourself" idea was born at a small church in rural England more than 30 years ago and was first staged in Chicago in 1976. Audience members are seated according to voice range (soprano, alto, tenor, bass) and sing with a full orchestra and four soloists.

Mark S. Doss is a celebrated bass-baritone whose accomplishments include a Grammy Award (1993) for his work on the recording of Semele (Handel), and numerous engagements with the famous Teatro alla Scala in Milan, Italy. Mr. Doss began his musical studies to aid in his ambitions to become a Catholic priest, but instead found opera to be his true calling. He has since emerged as one of the opera world's leading singers.

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