Years of Service: 2000-2007
Sherrill Milnes is universally acclaimed as the foremost operatic baritone of his generation. He sang over 650 performances at the Met, where he was honored with sixteen new productions, seven opening nights, and ten national telecasts. As a leading artist in all of the world’s great opera houses, Mr. Milnes performed and recorded with the likes of Domingo, Pavarotti, Caballé, Sutherland, Sills, Horne, Price, and Tebaldi. He is the winner of three Grammy Awards, and is the most recorded American singer of his time. In 2008 he received the Opera News Award for Distinguished Achievement.
Milnes has received numerous honors during his distinguished career, including seven honorary doctoral degrees. He is particularly proud of being named as a Commendatore of the Italian Republic for his long commitment to Italian opera. In 1987 he received New York City’s Seal of Recognition for his rich contribution to the city’s cultural life. He was also chosen by the American Bible Society to receive the 25 millionth copy of its Good News Bible, and in 1993 he organized a benefit concert in Vienna’s famed St. Stephen’s Cathedral for the victims of the Bosnia-Herzegovina War. In September 1996, Mr. Milnes was honored by the French government with the distinguished Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, and in 2003 he became a member of the Lincoln Academy, the highest honor awarded by the state of Illinois.
Milnes has worked extensively with young singers throughout his career. He has led masterclasses at the Juilliard and Manhattan Schools in New York City, for the Met Opera’s Lindemann Young Artists Development Program, Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Ryan Opera Center, at major universities and music schools throughout the country, and at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. Mr. Milnes has served as faculty at the Yale School of Music and at Northwestern University, where he is the John Evans Distinguished Professor of Music Emeritus. Additional teaching engagements have brought him to the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow, Shanghai Conservatory in China, Northern Royal College of Music in Manchester, Israel Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv, and the International Institute of Vocal Arts in Chiari, Italy. He has served as a judge for several international competitions including the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition, and for the Richard Tucker Music Foundation, of which he is a founding board member.
Driven by his dedication to make the vocal arts vibrant, vital, and entertaining in today’s world, Mr. Milnes continues to give masterclasses, judge competitions, and mentor new generations of singers. With his wife, Maria Zouves, he co-founded and runs the Sherrill Milnes VOICE Programs: VOICExperience Foundation and the Savannah VOICE Festival provide training for aspiring young artists while fostering new audiences for the arts.