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Within this frail crucible of light - Brandon Bell, baritone
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Within this frail crucible of light: The Rape of Lucretia (Benjamin Britten)
Brandon Bell, baritone
William Hobbs, piano
July 2022
Brandon Bell


Brandon Bell is a young baritone making waves in the operatic landscape within North America. In the summer of 2023, Mr. Bell joined Santa Fe Opera as an Apprentice Singer, singing the Shepherd in Pelléas et Mélisande and singing Pastore 2 and covering 4th Pastore/1st Spirit in Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo. In 2023-2024, Mr. Bell will be seen as Fiorello in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Oreste in Iphigénie en Tauride, Pa Zegner in Proving Up, and Baron Douphol in La traviata, all at Pittsburgh Opera.  Equally at home on the concert stage, Mr. Bell makes his Santa Clara Chorale debut as the soloist in Margaret Bond’s Credo and will present Gregory Spears’s Walden with both the Cincinnati Song Initiative and Salt Creek Song Festival this spring. 


In the 2022-2023 season, Mr. Bell joined Pittsburgh Opera as a Resident Artist, singing the role of Boy in Denis and Katya (Venables / Huffman) and Huntsman in Rusalka.  In their Le nozze di Figaro production, he covered the Count and sang the role in a student matinée performance. Mr. Bell also joined Opera Philadelphia for a workshop of 10 Days in a Madhouse (Orth/Moscovitch) in the role of Josiah Blackwell, sang with Brooklyn Art Song Society in a concert featuring Schumann’s Liederkreis, joined Salt Creek Song Festival for a recital, and was a finalist in the Duncan Williams Voice Competition.


In 2021-22, Mr. Bell joined Fort Worth Opera as one of their Lesley Resident Artists, appearing as Gomez in the world premiere production of Zorro. Additionally, Mr. Bell covered the role of Germont and sang Baron Douphol in Fort Worth Opera’s production of La traviata and joined White Snake Projects for their concert Sing Strong: Incarcerated Voices. Mr. Bell also made debuts with Houston Grand Opera in a workshop of Another City (Beck / Fleischmann) and Cape Symphony as the bass soloist in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. In the summer of 2022, Mr. Bell returned to Des Moines Metro Opera, singing Jim and covering Jake in Porgy & Bess and covering Thomas McKeller in the Midwest premiere of American Apollo (Geter / Palmer).


In 2021, Mr. Bell finished his tenure as a Utah Opera Resident Artist where he appeared in several virtually streamed concerts, including Songs for Our Time and Light on the Horizon. He was originally slated to make numerous exciting role premieres with Utah Opera, including Fiorello in Il barbiere di Siviglia, the Steward in Flight, Sciarrone in Tosca, and Samuel in Pirates of Penzance (COVID19). Mr. Bell was also to be featured as the baritone soloist in Fauré’s Requiem with Utah Symphony (COVID19). On stage, he performed with Utah Opera as Dr. Grenvil in La traviata, the British Major in Silent Night, Montague Somers in Gentleman’s Island, and Garcia/Zuniga in La tragédie de Carmen. That summer, he was granted a fellowship at the Ravinia Festival’s Steans Music Institute in their program for singers where he studied and performed a variety of art song repertoire. He also joined Des Moines Metro Opera in 2021 as an Apprentice Artist, covering the roles of Momus in Platée and Hawkins Fuller in Fellow Travelers and singing the roles of General Arlie and the Bartender in Fellow Travelers


Other recent engagements include Mr. Bell’s portrayal of Terry in West Edge Opera’s production of Missy Mazzoli’s Breaking the Waves, Colline in West Bay Opera’s production of La bohème, and the Corporal in La fille du régiment, as a Festival Artist with Opera Saratoga.


During the 2017-18 season, Mr. Bell appeared as a Studio Artist at Chautauqua Opera, covering the roles of Masetto and Il Commendatore in their summer production of Don Giovanni. The season also saw Mr. Bell as a soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the California Symphony and as a featured ensemble singer with the Oakland Symphony in their Pride & Prejudice: Notes from LGBTQ concert.

Mr. Bell is a proud alumnus of the prestigious Wolf Trap Opera Studio Artist program where, in the summer of 2015, he was seen as the English Ambassador in Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles and the L’imperial Commissario in Madama Butterfly. In 2017, Mr. Bell returned to Wolf Trap Opera to appear in the world premiere performances of Listen, Wilhelmina!, a mini-opera for children.

Mr. Bell, with affection and fascination for new works, was a Featured Dater in the world premiere performances of Speed Dating Tonight!  by Michael Ching. He also appeared as Hymie Felderman in the workshop of Ricky Ian Gordon’s Morning Star with Opera Fusion: New Works, a collaboration between Cincinnati Opera and CCM Opera.


Mr. Bell was awarded an Encouragement Award in the Tennessee District of the 2022 Metropolitan Opera Laffont Competition. In 2021, he received an Encouragement Award for the Gerda Lissner Lieder/Song Competition and the Utah District of the Metropolitan Opera Laffont Competition. He was also awarded 4th Place in the 2018 East Bay Opera League Young Artist Scholarship Awards Competition and was chosen from National auditions as a finalist in the 2018 Mondavi Center Young Artist Competition. In 2017, he received both Third Place (Student Division) - Orpheus Da Capo Award at the Orpheus National Music Competition for Vocalists and the Leola Boyce Award, awarded by the Knoxville Choral Society.  The Cleveland Foundation chose Mr. Bell as the 2015 and 2016 recipient of its A. Grace Lee Mims Vocal Scholarship, awarded in recognition of his commitment to the perpetuation of the singing of the Negro spiritual.


Mr. Bell is a graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where he received a Postgraduate Diploma in Vocal Performance. Additionally, he holds his Master of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

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