Taro Ichihara is highly acclaimed for his convincing artistic expression and beautiful voice. Considered as one of the most sought-after tenors in the world, he frequently appears at major opera houses especially in Italy, France, Germany and USA.
Born in Sakata city in Yamagata, Taro Ichihara studied at the Tokyo University of Fine Arts and Music, where he also pursued his post-graduate studies. Having won first prize at the Japan-Italy Music Competition and the Japan Music Competition in 1979, Ichihara sang as soloist in concerts of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony and Handel's Messiah. He then had the title role in Massenet's 'Werther' with Nikikai Company and made his opera debut in Tokyo.
In 1984, Ichihara was invited to sing the role of Malcolm in Verdi's 'Macbeth' with conductor Riccardo Chailly at the Salzburg Festival, in which he was the first ever Japanese singer to appear at such a prestigious festival. He was also the first male Japanese singer to appear at L'Opéra de Paris in France to sing Macduff in 'Macbeth'. Since then, Ichihara's activities overseas included seven consecutive season title roles in 'Un Ballo in Maschera', 'Rigoletto', 'Lucia', 'Tosca', 'Rosenkavalier' at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, and many invitations from companies such as Chicago Lyric Opera, Scala in Milan, Teatro San Carlo in Napoli, Teatro Regio di Torino, Hamburg Staatsoper in Germany, Staatsoper in Cologne, Opéra National de Lyon, Opéra de Nice, Summer Festival at Orange, and Teatro Colon in Argentina.
In Japan, Ichihara appears in many opera productions mainly with Fujiwara Opera Company, New national theatre Tokyo, and in many subscription concerts with major orchestras, and his own solo recitals. In 2003 Ichihara appeared in NHK Music Festival, performing Verdi: Requiem with Riccardo Chailly/Orchestra e Coro Sinfonico di Milano Giuseppe Verdi. Having performed with many prestigious conductors such as the late Georg Solti, Riccardo Chailly, Zubin Mehta, Lorin Maazel, Ichihara continues to attract much attention for his experienced authentic bel canto voice and his beautiful expressions that he creates.