Ben McAteer

Baritone

"Outstanding among a consistently fine ensemble [is] Ben McAteer as Dostoyevsky's representative, the resilient aristocrat, Goryanchikov"

Financial Times

"As Tolloller and Mountararat, Ben Johnson and Ben McAteer were irresistible – their vowels decliciously Victorian-aristocrat, their acting only just over the top…"

Opera Magazine

"Ben McAteer presents an intriguing figure, smoothly-sung, decisive yet distracted, a reading of the role that is disarmingly naturalistic."

Goldenplec Music News

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In the 2022/2023 season, Northern Irish baritone Ben McAteer’s highlights include Pangloss Candide with the Hamburger Symphoniker, Baskir Lalla Roukh for Wexford Festival Opera, and a return to Irish National Opera in his role debut as Malatesta in Don Pasquale.

Last season, Ben sang the roles of Officer Two & Blazes in Peter Maxwell-Davies’ The Lighthouse for Irish National Opera, Grand Inquisitor The Gondoliers for Scottish Opera in both Scotland and London, and performed Brahms Requiem with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra. He also featured on a disc of undiscovered songs by Irish composer Ina Boyle with Iain Burnside, released on Delphian Records in August 2021.

Other operatic roles to date include Falke Die Fledermaus and Goryanchikov From the House of the Dead for Welsh National Opera; Schaunard La Bohème, Count Almaviva Le Nozze di Figaro, Father Hansel & Gretel for Irish National Opera; Eisenstein Die Fledermaus, Papageno The Magic Flute, and Marullo Rigoletto for Northern Ireland Opera; Pangloss & Voltaire Candide for West Green Opera and with the Xi’an Symphony Orchestra; Calchas La Belle Helène for Blackheath Opera; Sharpless Madama Butterfly at Opera Holland Park; and Mr Webb in the European premiere of Ned Rorem’s Our Town at GSMD. He also performed Frank-Fritz in a concert performance of Die Tote Stadt with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra and Astrologer/Abbot The Burning Fiery Furnace at Southrepps Music Festival.

This biography is for information only and should not be reproduced.

Don Pasquale (Malatesta), Irish National Opera

(November 2022)

[Masterson] and Danby are ideally complemented – both vocally and in dramatic energy and comic timing – by baritone Ben McAteer as Pasquale’s friend Malatesta (the plastic surgeon)

Michael Dungan, The Irish Times

Ben McAteer as a Malatesta sounding more handsome of voice than the pre-show caution of his ailing state suggested: just perfect, in fact.

David Nice, The Arts Desk****

Ben McAteer summons gravitas as Dr Malatesta

Katy Hayes, Irish Independent

Lalla Roukh (Baskir)

Wexford National Opera (October 2022)

The Irish baritone balanced buffo banter – the patter ever clear – with vocal finesse, in a strongly characterised performance.

Claire Seymour, Opera Today

Ben McAteer, from Northern Ireland and making his Wexford debut, was Baskir, who has never seen the king (essential to plot plausibility so he can spend the opera ignorantly frustrating his boss). He is a dupe made sympathetic by a fine voice… His sparring with Mirza was entertaining, vocally and histrionically… This season is labelled “Magic and Music” and what casting Wexford can often conjure up.

Roy Westbrook, Bachtrack****

Ben McAteer’s natural charisma and histrionic know-how meant his Baskir almost stole the show

Hugh Canning, Opera Magazine

…baritone Ben McAteer capering in the chief comic role of court official Baskir

George Hall, The Stage*****

Ben McAteer as Baskir is responsible for the funny moments. He has a hard time keeping the princess away from the poet and scores with a wonderful buffo-baritone. In interaction with O'Sullivan, McAteer also convinces with humorous play when he succumbs to the maid's attempts to flirt and thus allows himself to be distracted so that Lalla-Roukh can meet her Nourreddin again. Another highlight is the duet with Nourreddin in the second act, in which he tries to trick the king without realizing that he is talking to the king himself. When he subsequently fears for his life because Nourreddin and Lalla-Roukh have tricked him, he expresses this in a brilliant couplet, in which he is literally thrown across the stage by the dancers in the shopping cart like on a ship in a storm.

Thomas Molke, Online Musik Magazin

Utopia Ltd (King Paramount), National Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company

(September 2022)

The singing was splendid, too. McAteer …who’d sounded positively Wagnerian as he announced his resolve to turn his kingdom into a limited liability company at the end of Act One, was an imposing and intensely sympathetic figure

Richard Bratby, The Arts Desk****

The usual G&S material was all present, nonsense and wit balanced with lyrical tunes and compelling ensembles. The cast captured it all with enthusiasm, with hats in the first act differentiating the suited men. Ben McAteer was suavely confident as King Paramount

David Smythe, Bachtrack****

Ben McAteer’s portrayal of a rather ineffectual king who turns into an effective one is finely played – in the trio where he eavesdrops on the plotting of Phantis and Scaphio, he conveys decided glee.

Catriona Graham, The Opera Critic

The Gondoliers / Utopia Ltd (Grand Inquisitor / King Paramount), Scottish Opera

Hackney Empire (April 2022)

Ben McAteer makes a fine King Paramount, well-meaning, dithering and longing to be free of his two pushy advisers

Tim Ashley, The Guardian****

Ben McAteer was King Paramount, a tall, genial presence with a sunny baritone, and together with Charlie Drummond as the Girton-educated Princess Zara he set the musical tone at a consistently high level

Richard Bratby, The Spectator

Maxwell-Davies The Lighthouse, Irish National Opera

(December 2021)

The singing of the three roles by Gavan Ring, Ben McAteer and John Molloy was superb.

Noel Megahey, Opera Journal

The Gondoliers / Utopia Ltd (Grand Inquisitor / King Paramount), Scottish Opera

(November 2021)

Ben McAteer upped his artistic profile with a deliciously camp portrayal of the Grand Inquisitor – a mature, stage-filling impersonation that kept within the bounds of taste.

Andrew Clark, Opera Magazine

Ben McAteer’s Grand Inquisitor, a delicious picture of pomposity, gives an outstanding comic performance.

Mark Brown, The National (Scotland)

Outstanding were Ben McAteer’s charmingly easygoing King Paramount…

Ken Walton, The Scotsman****

Though the production maintains a light-heartedness, an ounce of villainy can be sniffed out by Ben McAteer’s Grand Inquisitor, a booming and delicious role. And though not necessarily the most diabolical of Gilbert & Sullivan’s rogues, McAteer devours the scenes, capitalising on every opportunity with his bass-baritone and imposing vocals.

Dominic Corr, The Reviews Hub - Scotland

Ben McAteer was suavely confident as King Paramount

David Smythe, Bachtrack

La bohème (Schaunard), Irish National Opera

(March 2021)

Ben McAteer was an excellent Schaunard...

Opera Magazine

Ben McAteer and John Molloy also acquitted themselves well in their respective roles – there were no weak links in the cast.

Robert Beattie, Sean and Heard International

Recording: 3 English operettas (Sullivan, Ford and Cellier)

BBC Concert Orchestra / Dutton Vocalion (2020)

Ben McAteer’s urbane strikes a better balance” [Haddon Hall] / “…the title roles provide Ben McAteer with well-taken comedy chances.” [Mr Jericho and Captain Billy]

Opera Magazine

​Die Fledermaus (Eisenstein), Northern Ireland Opera

(September 2019)

Ben McAteer was a game Eisenstein…

Robert Thicknesse, Opera Now

Ben McAteer found ample humour in Eisenstein's self-inflicted quandary...

Michael Quinn, Opera Magazine

La belle Hélène (Calchas)

Blackheath Halls Opera (July 2019)

Ben McAteer gave an object lesson in comic opera as Calchas.

Yehuda Shapiro, Opera Magazine

Opera Repertoire

Bernstein

Candide (Voltaire/Pangloss/Martin)

Britten

The Rape of Lucretia (Tarquinius)

Gilbert & Sullivan

HMS Pinafore (Captain Corcoran)
Iolanthe (Earl of Mountararat)
Patience (Colonel Calverley/Grosvenor)
The Grand Duke (Ludwig)
The Mikado (Pish-Tush/Pooh-Bah)
The Pirates of Penzance (Major-General Stanley/Pirate King)
Trial by Jury (The Learned Judge)

Henze

Boulevard Solitude (Lescaut)*

Humperdinck

Hansel & Gretel (Peter)

Janáček

From the House of the Dead (Goryanchikov)

Korngold

Die Tote Stadt (Frank/Fritz)

MacRae

The Devil Inside (James)

Massenet

La Navarraise (Remigio)
Le Portrait de Manon (Des Grieux)

Mozart

Così fan tutte (Guglielmo)
Die Zauberflöte (Papageno)
Le Nozze di Figaro (Count Almaviva/title role)

Puccini

La Bohème (Marcello)
Madama Butterfly (Sharpless)

Purcell

Dido & Aeneas (Aeneas)

Rorem

Our Town (Mr Webb)

Strauss

Die Fledermaus (Falke)

Tchaikovsky

Eugene Onegin (title role)*

Verdi

Rigoletto (Marullo)

*role studied/covered

Oratorio / Masses Repertoire

J.S. Bach

Christmas Oratorio
Mass in B Minor
St. John Passion

Beethoven

Symphony No. 9 – “Choral"

Brahms

Requiem

Durufle

A German Requiem

Elgar

The Apostles (Jesus)

The Dream of Gerontius

The Kingdom (St Peter)

Fauré

Requiem

Handel

Dixit Dominus
Messiah
Samson (Manoa/Harapha)

Haydn

Nelson Mass
Missa in tempore belli

Mealor

Crucifixus

Mendelssohn

Elijah

Mozart

Requiem
Mass in C Minor

Orff

Carmina Burana

Stravinsky

Pulcinella

Sullivan

The Golden Legend
The Light of the World (Jesus)
The Prodigal Son

Vivaldi

Magnificat in G

Orchestral Song / Other Repertoire

Adams

The Wound Dresser

Copland

Old American Songs

Delius

Cynara

Finzi

Let Us Garlands Bring

Hay

The Wind Among the Reeds

Schubert

Mass in G

Stanford

Songs of the Fleet

Turnage

At Sixes & Sevens

V. Williams

Fantasia on Christmas Carols
Five Mystical Songs
Songs of Travel

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