Kenneth Tarver, born in Detroit (Michigan), is a graduate of three distinguished foundations: Interlochen Arts Academy, Oberlin College Conservatory of Music and the Yale University School for Music. In 1992, upon receiving the title MUSICAE MAGISTRI, the Yale School of Music awarded him the Dean's Prize for the most outstanding student in the graduating class.
In 1991 he won the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, and was a member of the Met Young Artist Program from 1992-94. He made his European debut in Stuttgart as Don Ottavio in DON GIOVANNI. From 1994-1997 he was a member of the Staatstheater Stuttgart ensemble, where he sang principal tenor roles in operas of Mozart and Rossini.|
Highlights since 1998 include appearing as Don Ottavio in the Peter Brook production of DON GIOVANNI, Claudio Abbado conducting, for Festival d'Art Lyrique d'Aix en Provence as well as appearing at the Royal Opera Covent Garden as Fenton in FALSTAFF, Rodrigo in Rossini's OTELLO, Don Ramiro in LA CENERENTOLA and as Ferrando in COSI FAN TUTTE.
Kenneth Tarver has appeared in Rossini roles at the New York City Opera, Staatsoper Berlin, Hamburgische Staatsoper, Semperoper Dresden, the Edinburgh Festival, the Royal Opera London and at the Liceu in Barcelona.
In the season 2003/2004 he debuted as Don Ramiro in LA CENERENTOLA at the Bayerische Staatsoper Munich and as Ernesto in DON PASQUALE at the Deutsche Oper Berlin where he is guesting regularly as Tamino (DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE), Ein Sänger (DER ROSENKAVALIER) and Dorvil (LA SCALA DI SETA).
Concerts form another main focus of Kenneth Tarver's artistic work. In 1998 he debuted with the London Symphony Orchestra in Schostakovich's Suit from The Nose, conducted by Mstislav Rostropovich. Furthermore, Kenneth Tarver has recorded Leonard Berstein's A White House Cantata under Kent Nagano (DG), as well as Messa Solenne by Verdi under Riccardo Chailly for Decca, Romeo et Juliette and Béatrice et Bénédict by Berlioz, as well as the double Grammy award winning recording of Les Troyens with Sir Colin Davis.