Tenor Mark Hernandez has been performing professionally since 1990. Opera News has acclaimed him for his "winning physicality and unceasing attention to character, anchored by secure, attractive vocalism," and the San Francisco Chronicle has described his voice as "burnished gold.” Other critics have called him “top drawer” (Talkin Broadway), “a strong and rich tenor” (San Francisco Bay Times), and “a marvelous singer as well as a splendid actor” (Napa News).
Mark has appeared in dozens of roles with Northern California companies such as Berkeley Opera, Mendocino Music Festival, Pocket Opera, Thick Description, and West Bay Opera, to name a few. Most recently, he appeared as a soloist with Symphony Silicon Valley and Opera Cultura. He is scheduled to create the lead role of Kinikilali / Fray Ruiz in The Lariat by composer Lisa Prosek in an atelier performance produced by the Center for Contemporary Opera and the world premiere produced by the San Francisco International Arts Festival.
While Mark’s credits are many and varied, he has a particular passion for new music, as well as works that reflect Latin American culture. He has collaborated directly with composers Hector Armienta (Cuentos de Peregrinación, River of Women/La Llorona, Z, all world premieres), David Conte (America Tropical, Firebird Motel, The Dreamers, The Passion of Rita St. James, all world premieres), Myron Fink (The Conquistador), Gordon Getty (Plump Jack), Carla Lucero (Wuornos, Sor Juana), Henry Mollicone (Emperor Norton, The Face on the Barroom Floor), Lisa Prosek (Trap Door, world premiere), and Conrad Susa (Transformations).
Mark has commissioned and premiered three works from composer David Garner: Seis caprichos de García Lorca, Cinco poemas de Jaime Manrique, and (with Citywinds) Viñetas flamencas. In addition, he created and performed Canciónes clásicas, a four-recital exploration of Latin American art song, presented at the San Francisco Community Music Center and on the Old First Concerts series.
Mark is active as a teaching artist, primarily with the San Francisco Opera Guild, leading programming that helps young people to understand and get excited by opera and performance. Away from the stage he is a consultant to non-profit performing arts organizations and grantmaking entities, as well as a writer and librettist.