B i o g r a p h y
Praised by the New York Times for "Crucially, deftly navigating the border of genuine emotion through his singing" tenor, Isai Jess Muñoz, enjoys a busy schedule of opera, concerts, and recitals, performing repertoire from the Renaissance and Baroque to the 21st Century. He has appeared with leading ensembles and companies around the world including the Israel Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic, Mostly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center, the Grammy-Winning Voices of Ascension, Verbier Music Festival of Switzerland, Bard Music Festival, Alvin Ailey Dance Theater on Broadway, New York City Opera, American Symphony Orchestra, American Composers Symphony, and The Cincinnati Opera.
Recent engagements include debuts with the St. Petersburg Opera, the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra, the Newark Symphony, New York Opera Society, the National Young Arts foundation in Miami, Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice, and Opera Orlando.
Jess Muñoz has been featured on fourteen audio recordings including the 2009 Grammy-Nominated Album Song of the Stars with Voices of Ascension. His collaboration with Iranian composer Hafez Nazeri can be heard on Sony Classical's album, Rumi Symphony Project Untold which was twice ranked Billboard's #1 Classical Album (2013). With a strong commitment to participating in the dissemination of contemporary and underrepresented works of classical music, eight of his recordings premier never-before captured material. His latest album scheduled for release in summer 2019, entitled Visca L’Amor, features 24 Catalan Art Songs by native composers.
He has most recently been recognized by the American Prize, the National Opera Association, the National Association of Teachers of Singing, Delaware Division of the Arts, and the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts for ongoing performance activities of Iberian and Latin American Song as well as for his work in the area of stage direction and production. His award-winning solo recitals devoted to music of the Hispanic diaspora continues to tour throughout the country.
Muñoz is a graduate of the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, the Manhattan School of Music, and SUNY Stony Brook where he studied with W. Stephen Smith of the Juilliard School. As educator, he has served on the voice faculty of Musiktheater Bavaria in Germany, the Rollins College Summer Music Academy, and the University of Central Florida Summer Opera Institute. From 2012-2016, Muñoz served as Associate Professor of Voice and Opera at Indiana Wesleyan University.
Dr. Muñoz currently serves as Assistant Professor of Voice and Opera at the University of Delaware and as Chair of National Opera Association’s Sacred in Opera Initiative— a division of the NOA that explores through research and performance, the interplay between music-drama and the ideologies of world religions. Jess Muñoz is also a proud member of the NATS National Committee on Advocacy— an initiative geared to support inclusion and diversity in the fields of singing. In Fall 2018, Dr. Muñoz was named Executive Director of the International Baroque Academy at Musiktheater Bavaria in Germany. This program provides singers and instrumentalists with mentorship from some of today’s leading scholars and artists in the field of historically informed performance practice.