After mathematics and physics studies at the University of Toronto, followed by a short stint as a statistical analyst, Roelof Oostwoud turned to his real love: music! With full scholarships to study opera and voice at the University of Toronto Opera School and Royal Conservatory of Music he studied with: George Lambert (voice teacher of Jon Vickers), the Welsh bass Howell Glynne (Sadler's Wells and Covent Garden), and most extensively with the well-known Canadian Baritone Louis Quilico (Metropolitan Opera). Further studies took him to Milan and Vienna. His stage career began with the Canadian Opera Company, followed by engagements in San Francisco, Boston and the Tanglewood Festival.
North American appearances were soon followed by international operatic and concert engagements with companies that included Covent Garden, the Netherlands Opera, la Scala, Deutsche Oper am Rhein, and Vienna, Munich and Paris.
In a career centered on the lirico-spinto repertoire, the mainstay of Oostwoud's opera repertoire is now the spinto and dramatic Italian, French and German Helden tenor roles, including Don Jose in Carmen, Florestan in Fidelio and the title roles in Otello and Tannhauser. The concert podium also figures large in his career, encompassing appearances with orchestras such as the Vienna Philharmonic, the Deutsche Symphony Orchestra, Berlin, Israel Philharmonic, Munich Symphony Orchestra, Toronto Symphony and Montreal Symphony. His extensive concert repertoire ranges from Purcell and Bach to Stravinsky, Britten, Berio and Henze.
Since 2010 Oostwoud has been working with Dover Publishing, Inc., New York on a new volume of Richard Strauss songs and since October of 2011 has been appointed Vocal Music Advisor for Dover Publishing, Inc.