Steven Rainbolt is honored to be the recipient of the Peabody 2013 Excellence in Teaching Award, presented by the Johns Hopkins Alumni Association. He has been on the Peabody faculty since 2001. Dr. Rainbolt's career in opera and musical theatre encompasses more than 40 roles, having appeared with regional opera companies of Indianapolis, Lake George, Sarasota, Baltimore, and Annapolis, as well as the Austin Lyric, Portland Opera Repertory Theatre, Arkansas Opera Theatre, New York Liederkranz, Ashlawn-Highland Opera, and Des Moines Metro Opera, in a repertory of roles ranging from operetta's Danilo and Falke, and many of the Mozart heroes, to Rossini's Figaro and the Faust Valentin. He made his European operatic debut with Mstislav Rostropovich in a contemporary premiere at the Evian Festival in France.
Dr. Rainbolt received the Artist Diploma from the Peabody Conservatory where he was the recipient of the George Castelle Memorial Prize in Voice as well as a winner in the Sylvia Green Voice Competition. He has been a regional winner in the Metropolitan Opera Auditions and a finalist in the Opera Columbus Voice Competition. His work with master teachers includes Dominic Cossa, John Shirley-Quirk, and Thomas Grubb. In masterclass, he has worked with Renata Scotto and Evelyn Lear.
Engagements in oratorio range from Bach to Walton, including Brahms' Requiem, Bach's St. John Passion, Handel's L'Allegro and Messiah, Dvorak's Te Deum, Vaughan Williams' Five Mystical Songs and Sea Symphony, Haydn's Creation, and Orff's Carmina Burana. He has enjoyed extensive experience as a soloist with orchestras, including The Annapolis Symphony, the New Westchester Symphony and Liederkranz Orchestras of New York, the Richmond and Nebraska Chamber Orchestras, the Loudoun Symphony and the Smithsonian Concerto Grosso. He has also appeared as soloist with choral organizations such as Masterworks Chorus & Orchestra in Washington, Columbia Pro Cantare, Handel Choir of Baltimore, and the Baltimore Choral Arts Chamber Ensemble. He has performed as a fellow with the Bach Aria Group in New York and has been heard on Michigan Public Radio in the Faure Requiem. His work with notable conductors includes Leonard Slatkin, Mstislav Rostropovich, Leslie Dunner, David Effron, Alfredo Silipigni, and Samuel Baron.
As a recitalist he has concertized and toured in many states and in Europe, most recently a recital in Salzburg, Austria. He has also performed with the vocal chamber groups, The Lyric Arts Quintet and The Peabody Four and the Bay Voices. His love of concert repertoire finds him continually exploring new recital music, and he has premiered new works in both opera and oratorio - most recently a Nunc Dimittis composed for him by Elan Ray Sprenkle, first performed in an Evensong in Edinburgh, Scotland.
A dual passion for singing and teaching dominates Dr. Rainbolt's music career. In addition to his Artist Diploma, he holds a Master of Music degree from the University of Iowa, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Maryland. In 2001 he was bestowed the "Excellence in Teaching" award from the University of Maryland Graduate School. He has held teaching positions at various colleges and universities, including Hastings College (Nebraska), Northern Kentucky University, Mansfield University (Pennsylvania), and George Mason University (Virginia). He has also served on the voice faculty of the University of Miami in Salzburg, Austria summer program, and the Fairbanks, Alaska, Fine Arts Festival.
He has served as both Vice President and President of the Maryland/DC National Association of Teachers of Singing Chapter, and he regularly attends and adjudicates the student competitions, and has also served as a judge for the Annapolis Opera Vocal Competition. Many of his students have been NATS winners, state winners in the Metropolitan Opera Competition and finalists in the Annapolis Opera Competition. Dr. Rainbolt continues to enjoy the many successes of his students, past and present, who have pursued their music careers in graduate study, opera training programs, opera apprentice programs in such institutions including Juilliard, Academy of the Vocal Arts, Sarasota Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, Central City Opera, Arizona Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Seattle Opera, Lake George Opera, New York City Opera, Baltimore, Opera, Merola Opera, to name a few, and in numerous professional engagements.