Music Director, Tenor, Educator
Taylor Masamitsu is a Japanese-American musician and educator who is known for his innovation, collaborative spirit, and unique storytelling. He has performed throughout the U.S. and Europe, conducted numerous world premieres, and remains a champion of accessible arts education.
Taylor’s musical performances have focused on operatic and chamber works, many of which were written specifically for his “commanding, vibrant voice” (Vladimir Chernov, Metropolitan Opera). Firmly rooted in interdisciplinary practice, Taylor's repertoire spans from Baroque opera to contemporary musical theatre, his detailed musicianship drawing him towards demanding roles and scores alike. Recent engagements encompass performances Off-Broadway (Theater at St. Peter’s, Kraine Theatre), at Lincoln Center (Eric Whitacre, cond.), REDCAT, and Salle Cortot (Paris, FR). Taylor has also lent his voice to many films and television series, with highlights including Disney's Higglytown Heroes and Jojo’s Circus.
As an educator, Taylor has worked with leading schools and non-profits determined to provide meaningful, accessible arts education. He proudly serves on the faculties at Columbia University, Teachers College; The School of The New York Times; and Random Farms Kids' Theater. Taylor has previously been on faculties at the CalArts Community Arts Partnership, Broadway Training Center of Westchester, Inside Broadway, Plaza de la Raza, West Creek Academy, and Burbank Unified School District.
Taylor recently received his Master of Arts (MA) in Vocal Pedagogy at Columbia University, where he researched inclusivity, constructivist assessments, and studio teacher efficacy. Previously, Taylor received his Professional Diploma (PD) in Opéra from École Normale de Musique de Paris and his Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Vocal Performance from The Herb Alpert School of Music at The California Institute of the Arts. Additionally, he was a Young Artist at the International Vocal Artists Academy of Payerbach. Taylor's primary teachers are Maestro Vladimir Chernov, Dr. Jeanne Goffi-Fynn, Olga Toporkova, Dr. Tali Tadmor, and Maria Fortuna-Dean.
The son of Robert "Chip" Masamitsu (Academy Award Winner, Dances With Wolves, 1991) and Andrea Pugliese (Emmy Award Winner, The Doctors, 2010; five-time nominee), Taylor was fortunate to have been inspired and raised by incredible artists in their Los Angeles home.
WHAT THEY'RE SAYING
"[Taylor] brought joy, generosity, humor, talent, patience, and creative ingenuity to this process and I’m thrilled to have met and worked with him."
—Benjamin Viertel, Loserville Director
"Taylor became my right-hand man in every sense of the word and my strength during the entire process."
—Ellyn Essig, HAIR Director
"Taylor is a difficult act to follow because he has a very particular energy- one that supports others so lovingly and is uniquely his."
—Anne Englebert, Opera Liege Belgium
"...Taylor got me to enjoy singing with confidence, and that is what made the performance so fun in the end. When looking for a vocal teacher, you always want someone who will make you comfortable and be honest with you, Taylor is both of those things, and I would definitely recommend him to anyone."
— Maya, Trail vocalist; student
"Always secure on stage, Taylor creates characters that are compelling and interesting to watch."
— Dr. Paul Berkolds, Co-Chair of the CalArts VoiceArts Program