Rafael was born in Aalen, Baden-Württemberg, Germany. He moved to California as a young boy where he discovered his love for opera, and ultimately followed his passion into university and beyond.
Music has been a part of his life in some form or another since he was just a baby, but his operatic journey started as a boy soprano with his first opera, "Amahl and the Night Visitors." Since that time, he has continued studying voice and received his Master's degree from the New England Conservatory and his Bachelor's degree from California State University Stanislaus.
He has enjoyed spending two summers as a Gerdine Young Artist with the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, as well as a Featured Young Artist with the Pittsburgh Festival Opera, and attending other programs such as Lyric Opera Studio Weimar and the International Vocal Arts Institute.
This Fall he will be joining the Opera Studio of the Landestheater Linz.
He enjoys returning to California and giving recitals in the area where he grew up, giving him an outlet of studying and pursing art song in addition to opera.