American Bass Wm. Clay Thompson has been praised by Opera News for his “mahogany-timbred” voice. A native of Lexington, Kentucky, Mr. Thompson is in his second year as a Resident Artist with Minnesota Opera, and is known for his "...strong, rich, and warm color, yet the ability to cross over into bass-baritone repertoire." His 2018-2019 season at Minnesota Opera included performances as Dottore Grenvil in La traviata, the French General in Silent Night, Crébillon in La rondine, and Charles Comiskey in the world premiere of Joel Puckett's The Fix. Additionally, he returned to The Glimmerglass Festival in the summer of 2019, where he performed as Suleyman Pasha in The Ghosts of Versailles, Dottore Grenvil in Francesca Zambello's La traviata, and the title role in Benjamin Britten's Noah's Flood. Upcoming engagements include his return the Minnesota Opera as Leporello in Don Giovanni.
The 2017–2018 season saw Mr. Thompson in roles at Minnesota Opera including Antonio in Le nozze di Figaro, Second Prison Guard in Jake Heggie's Dead Man Walking, Count Ceprano in Rigoletto, and Palémon in Thaïs, as well as having covered Don Bartolo (Le nozze di Figaro), Warden Benton (Dead Man Walking), Sparafucile (Rigoletto), and the title role in Don Pasquale. As a member of the Young Artist Program at the Glimmerglass Festival, he was seen as The Poacher in E. Loren Meeker’s new production of The Cunning Little Vixen, Father Palmer in Kevin Puts’ Silent Night, and Gladhand in Francesca Zambello’s production of West Side Story.