|Year of Birth:||1942|
Samuel Ramey (born March 28, 1942, Colby, Kansas) is an American operatic bass.
At the height of his career, he was greatly admired for his range and versatility, having possessed a sufficiently accomplished bel canto technique to enable him to sing the music of Handel, Mozart, and Rossini, yet power enough to handle the more overtly dramatic roles written by Verdi and Puccini.
Ramey is a 1960 graduate of Colby High School in Colby, Kansas. He studied music in high school and in college at Kansas State University, as well as at Wichita State with Arthur Newman. In college at Kansas State, he was a member of the Kappa Sigma Fraternity.
After further study in Central City (where he was in the chorus of Don Giovanni in 1963, with Norman Treigle in the title role) and as an apprentice with the Santa Fe Opera, he went to New York City where he worked for an academic publisher before he had his first breakthrough at the New York City Opera, debuting on March 11, 1973 singing the role of Zuniga in the 1875 Bizet opera Carmen, after which, among other roles, he took over the Faustian devils in Gounod's Faust and Boito's Mefistofele left empty by the early death of Treigle.
As his repertoire expanded, he spent more and more time in the theatres of Europe, notably in Berlin, Hamburg, London, Paris, Milan, Vienna, and the summer festivals in Aix-en-Provence, Glyndebourne, Pesaro, and Salzburg.