"Impressive Bass Johnnie Bankens makes his Nevada Opera debut as Colline. He scores solid marks for his exquisite singing of Colline’s famous Act IV ‘coat’ aria.” -Reno Gazette-
Johnnie Bankens is known for bringing "high caliber" performances to opera and musical theatre. Recent productions include Bluebeard in A Kékszakállú herceg vára, Don Annibale Pistacchio in Il campanello, Bass Soloist for Handel's Messiah, Bass Soloist for Haydn’s Nelson-Messe, Prince Gremin in Eugene Onegin, Uncle in Elizabeth Cree by Kevin Puts, and Bass Soloist in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. In 2016, he made his San Diego Opera debut as the Jailer in Tosca alongside Greer Grimsley, Gwynne Hughes Jones, and Alexia Volgaridou.
Mr. Bankens has performed leading roles in the United States, Italy, and San Marino. His other roles include Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro, Don Giovanni in Don Giovanni, Falstaff in Falstaff, Don Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte, Colline in La bohème, Frère Laurent in Roméo et Juliette, Fredrik Egerman in A Little Night Music, Junius in The Rape of Lucretia, Bob Beckett in HMS Pinafore, The Inn-keeper in The Man of La Mancha, and Orin Scrivello, DDS in Little Shop of Horrors.
In addition to his stage credits, Mr. Bankens is equally at home in recital and concert. In New York City, Mr. Bankens has been the Bass Soloist for a number of great master works. His favorites include Mozart’s Requiem, Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, and Saint-Saëns’ Christmas Oratorio. Johnnie has made professional appearances with San Diego Opera, Nevada Opera, Opéra Louisiane, Blue Lake Opera, The Montefeltro Festival, Starkville Symphony, West End Collegiate Singers, Symphony Chorus of New Orleans, The Stonewall Chorale, Lied Society of Minneapolis, and Louisiana Choral Foundation.