Brian Asawa made his Seattle Opera debut as Arsamene in Handel’s Xerxes, for which he won Seattle Opera’s 1997 Artist of the Year award. The Japanese-American countertenor returns to the company in 2007 as Tolomeo in Handel’s Julius Caesar (Giulio Cesare in Egitto), a role that he has sung at Houston Grand Opera, Teatro Real in Madrid, and, in 2006, San Diego Opera. For San Francisco Opera, he sang Baba the Turk in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress, a role that he also performed for the film version of the opera for Swedish Television One. Other recent roles at Hamburgische Staatsoper include Tolomeo, Ottone in Monteverdi’s Incoronazione di Poppea and, in 2006, Mascha in Eötvös’s Tri Sestri. Asawa began his opera career in 1991 when he became the first countertenor to win the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. In 1994, Asawa became the first countertenor to win the Placido Domingo Operalia International Opera Competition. He has appeared at the Metropolitan Opera, Royal Opera Covent Garden, Bayrische Staatsoper, Cologne Opera, Netherlands Opera, and Teatro di San Carlo. Upcoming engagements include a concert appearance with Seattle Baroque Orchestra in March.