Senior Lecturer, Director of Opera
American lyric baritone Hank Hammett is an active performer, teacher, director, and coach who has sung and trained singing actors in the organic fields of music, voice, theater arts, acting technique, opera, and strategic performance skills for over two decades.
As an acting coach for singers, Mr. Hammett has worked on Broadway and Off-Broadway, in television and film, and at The Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Glimmerglass Opera, Boston Lyric Opera, Los Angeles Opera, The Dallas Opera, Portland Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, Connecticut Opera, Bilbao Opera, L’Opéra de Montréal, Gran Teatre del Liceu (Barcelona) and De Nederlandse Opera (Amsterdam).
Mr. Hammett is the recipient of numerous awards and grants, including First Prize in the Liederkranz Competition in New York and the Grand Prix in the Concours International d’Oratorio et de Lied in France. He made his professional operatic debut in 1985 as Mercutio in Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette with the San Antonio Festival (Boris Goldovsky, director and conductor), and his professional recital debut in 1987 at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center, with pianist Dale Dietert. He has since received critical acclaim on opera and concert stages throughout North America, Mexico, and Europe.
While living in New York City for twelve years, in addition to maintaining a highly successful private studio, Mr. Hammett served as artistic director/stage director for the series “Supper & Song” and “Summer Sunday Sundown Concerts,” as well as for “Voices of Spring” and “Beautiful Music in a Sacred Place.” He served as music director/vocal coach for the acclaimed theatrical dance troupe Jane Comfort & Company and he was the vocal diction coach for Off-Broadway productions of Our Town, The Heidi Chronicles, and Dancing at Lughnasa. Mr. Hammett also worked with The American Theatre Wing to produce and direct outreach concerts bringing theatrical music into schools, hospitals, and retirement homes throughout the boroughs of New York.
In 2006 Mr. Hammett was commissioned by The Dallas Opera to write and direct Opera in a Box: Follow Your Dreams for The Dallas Opera-SMU Emerging Artist Program, which premiered in the spring of 2007. The success of the production has led to further commissions and projects.
Mr. Hammett received his Bachelor's and Master's of Music degrees from The University of Texas at Austin and did further study at The University of California-Santa Barbara, The Britten-Pears School for Advanced Musical Studies in Aldeburgh, England, and The Music Academy of the West. He studied acting technique at T. Schreiber Studio and MTB Studio in New York. In addition to his work at SMU, Mr. Hammett frequently gives master classes at universities and professional opera training programs including the Houston Grand Opera Studio and The Dallas Opera.
EducationB.M. and M.M., University of Texas at Austin;
further studies at Music Academy of the West, Britten-Pears School for Advanced Musical Studies, and New York's MTB Studio
TeachingMeadows Opera Workshop, Meadows Opera Ensemble, Advanced Acting for Singers
“Opera in a Box: Follow Your Dreams”