Five Mystical Songs, Vaughan Williams, Hartford Symphony Orchestra

"John Hancock articulated the text cleanly with magnificent vaulted lines."

-Hartford Courant, June 10, 2017

Werther, Boston Lyric Opera

"Albert, Charlotte's husband, was sung by the commanding baritone John Hancock. A popular father figure with the Metropolitan Opera and gifted interpreter of contemporary roles, he makes an impressive debut this week with the Boston Lyric Opera.

-Boston Music Intelligencer, March 2016

"Charlotte's high minded husband Albert (baritone John Hancock) sang with refined tone and musicianship. He commanded the stage whenever he was part of the action.

-WBUR Boston, March 2016

Così fan tutte, Nashville Opera

"They all shined when in the presence of the older characters, servant Despina (soprano Emily Pulley) and Don Alfonso (baritone John Hancock) whose acting, stage presence and vocal maturity provided the roux that brought the production together.

-Nashville Arts, January 2016

 Our Town (Rorem) Central City Opera, Colorado

"John Hancock not only had a towering physical presence, but had a voice to match: a mellifluous, responsive baritone that rang out soundly in the house." 

-Opera Today, July 2013

"Nearly every member of the cast was a standout singer and performer, especially John Hancock as Mr. Webb (get ready for this tall drink of water!), Kevin Langan as Dr. Gibbs and Phyllis Pancella as Mrs. Gibbs., July 2013

Kepler (Glass) Spoleto Festival USA

“John Hancock, who played Kepler, is a rising baritone star we should watch. He possesses a full-bodied, agile and extremely accurate voice, with musicianship, expression and stage presence to match. He had a few truly stunning moments.”

- The Post and Courier, May 27, 2012

“The baritone John Hancock, who sang the title role with an appealing suppleness, admirable clarity and a necessary but never overstated touch of melancholy, moved with professorial assurance.”

-The New York Times June 1, 2012

“John Hancock brought a resonant tone and imposing presence to Kepler.”

-The Wall Street Journal June 4, 2012

“John Hancock excelled at the title role.”

-Gramophone May 30, 2012

Falstaff, Angers Nantes Opera, France

Falstaff is touchingly portrayed by giant John Hancock with poetry rarely found in the role, setting the tone for a production magnified by its dazzling cast.”

- Diapason, Jean-Charles Hoffelé, March 21, 2011

“In John Hancock, the directing duo of Moshe Leiser and Patrice Caurier has found the ideal interpreter of this marginalized and ultimately pitiable being…. With a timbre furtively recalling the memory of Tito Gobbi and with his tall stature making him somehow all the more vulnerable, Hancock offers an interpretation of the title role that is never conventional, yet which also possesses consistently sensitive sparkle. This Falstaff is profound, human and, condemned to solitude by the ambiguity of the last laugh, tragic.”

- Alta Musica, Mehdi Mahdavi, March 13, 2011

“In the title role, John Hancock, a force of nature and a colossus with feet of clay, cannot help but attract sympathy. With genuine theatrical ease, both moving and human, he has an imposing presence and a timbre which, without heaviness, offers a very even vocal line.”

-, Michel Le Naour, March, 2011

“Théâtre et chant parfaits” “The marvelous and funny cast is dominated by the Falstaff of American giant John Hancock, his moving solos underlined by the Alice Ford of Véronique Gens, descended from her customary Olympian heights to play the charming gossip.”

- Classica, Rodolphe Bruneau-Boulmier, April 1, 2011

 New Jersey Symphony Orchestra

“[In Edward T. Cone’s Dover Beach] baritone John Hancock, a statuesque performer with a beautiful resonant voice, fills the theatre with the sorrow and pathos of this setting which is part of the New Jersey Roots Project. Beautiful, haunting and thought provoking, it leaves you wanting more…Hancock returns to sing a selection from Ernest Chausson’s song cycle Poème de l’amour et de la mer, “La mort de l’amour.” Starting off happily enough, it becomes the discomforting musings and lovesick confession of a close, close friend. Maestro and his singer have an understanding, and Hancock is brilliant in showing us the range of emotion in this French art song, and communicating its intimacy.”

-, Sherri Rase, January 2011

Dusapin’s Faustus, the Last Night at the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam

“John Hancock was a singular Faustus among thousands. His ability to fill the role defies comprehension. His voice seemed elastic. Sprechgesang, Bel Canto, Dramatic! All this he could do, and how!

-, Basia Jaworski, November 2010

Prokofiev’s Distant Seas at Zankel Hall

“John Hancock, a fine baritone who’s performed well in Prokofiev’s The Gambler at the Met, had his Russian more professionally in hand and vocalized strongly as Mark, with detailed point and gesture.

- Opera News, May 2010

In recital at the Bard Music Festival

“Of two nearly contemporaneous settings by Wagner and Schumann of a Heine poem, “Die Beiden Grenadiere,” Schumann’s was more conventional but also more psychologically probing. Mr. Hancock sang both eloquently.”

- The New York Times, August 17, 2009

The Gambler at The Metropolitan Opera

“John Hancock, an American baritone, made a fine Mr. Astley. This is not a signature role, but you can leave a mark in it. And Mr. Hancock was smooth, resonant, and just a little oily — appropriately so.”

- New York Sun, March 31, 2008

“John Hancock projected strength as Mr. Astley.

- Opera News, June 2008

La Traviata at The Metropolitan Opera

“The comprimari were all good, especially a rich-voiced John Hancock as the Baron, and Theodora Hanslowe as Annina.”

-, October 2008

Madama Butterfly with Cincinnati Opera

“John Hancock's Sharpless was solidly sung, with an abundance of feeling.”

- Opera News, July 2008

“Baritone John Hancock as Sharpless, the American consul who is the “conscience” of the story, had vocal and physical authority to match.”

- Music in Cincinnati, June 12, 2008

Faustus, the Last Night, Spoleto Festival USA

“John Hancock was particularly strong in the title role, seizing every opportunity to soar.”

- The New York Times, June 5, 2007

Manon Lescaut with San Francisco Opera

“Manon’s brother, Lescaut, is frequently played as both a loser and a nuisance, yet baritone John Hancock made him as commanding and as manipulative as his sister, a fine achievement.”

- San Francisco Classical Voice, November 22, 2006

“In their respective roles as Manon’s self-serving brother and her foolishly wealthy betrayed benefactor, baritone John Hancock and bass Eric Halfvarson excel in their roles as Lescaut and Geronte. Again, fantastic voices matched by equally strong acting chops.

- San Francisco Sentinel, April 9, 2007

Werther with Vancouver Opera

“Some of the evening's most exciting singing came from baritone John Hancock as the unhappy lover and later husband, Albert. Blessed with a simply gorgeous voice (rather in the mode of American baritone Thomas Hampson), Hancock was outstanding in every way, conveying the tensions of marital love not wholly unrequited. Hancock has real stage presence and, quite simply, star quality.”

- Review Vancouver, Oct 14, 2006

“Albert was the only one who sang without sheet music and he was sung by John Hancock with a ringing authoritative baritone and all the expression his character is allowed.”

- Vancouver Sun, October 19, 2006

Copland’s Old American Songs at Bard Music Festival

“In general, the festival maintained its track record of presenting fine young performers and some good veterans. The baritone John Hancock showed pure vocal power in songs by Copland and Ives.”

- The New York Times, August 16, 2005

Queen of Spades with San Francisco Opera

“Baritone John Hancock sings Prince Yeletsky suavely, caressing the famous aria, fearlessly scaling its high tessitura, and played him like one of Monty Python's upper class twits.”

- Seen and Heard International, June 21, 2005

Carmen at The Metropolitan Opera

“John Hancock leant an unusually substantial, attractive sound to Dancaïre.

- Opera News, October 6, 2005