Michael Wade Lee, tenor
Continuing to thrill audiences worldwide with his powerful voice and amazing performances, critics hail American Tenor Michael Wade Lee as "that rarity among
operatic tenors, a really good-looking, virile, well-built and gifted thespian
with a wide-ranging voice to match.” A seasoned performer on the operatic stage,
he performs with some of the most respected companies in the world.
In 2019-20, Michael returns to Wichita Grand Opera to sing Don José In Carmen. He returns to the Royal Opera House at Covent Garden in London to again
cover Grigoriy in Boris Godunov. He also joins Opera Idaho as Radamès
in Idaho's first ever staged production of Verdi's Aida. He will also sing the solo of Beethoven's Symphony 9 with Glens Falls Symphony.
He finishes the 2019 season singing Radames in Aida with Cambridge
Symphony UK, Cavaradossi in Tosca with Cork Symphony, Ireland, and the Canadian Opera Company, covering the Prince in Rusalka.
In 2017/18, Michael reprised Calaf in Turandot with Theater Essen,
as well as Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana with Theater Krefeld-Mönchengladbach.
2016/17 saw Michael sing Radames with Estonian National Opera's Aida, and Don José in Carmen which he also sang in the 2015/16 season, along with Il Duca in Rigoletto and Alfredo in La Traviata. He continued to sing Don José in Carmen with Theater Osnabruck and Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana with
In 2014/15, Theater Essen had the honor of seeing Michael Wade Lee's first ever
Calaf in Turandot. Soon after he performed Don José in Carmen and Gabriele Adorno in Simon Boccanegra with Theater Osnabruck. He returned to Theater Essen to sing his first Riccardo Un Ballo In Maschera. And Boston Lyric Opera
had the pleasure of Michael's first Alfredo in La Traviata.
In 2013/14 season, Michael sang the title role Stiffelio with Theater
Krefeld/Mönchengladbach and Theater Mannheim, Il Duca Rigoletto
with Birmingham Opera and Festival Of The Aegean and Don José Carmen
with Rahvoosoper in Estonia.. He will soon sing Alfredo La Traviata with Boston Lyric Opera for the first time after his first ever Cavaradossi Tosca
with Lyric Opera Productions Ireland. In 2013, Michael sang his first Radamès
Aida twice, with Annapolis Opera and Lyric Opera Productions Dublin. He debuted with Opera North UK as Cassi in Verdi's masterpiece Otello.
He opened the season as Il Duca Rigoletto with Pittsburgh Opera. 2012 saw
Michael make his Glyndebourne debut as Nemorino L'Elisir D'Amore with
stomping ovations and rave reviews! He also covered Bryan Hymel as the Prince in Rusalka at Covent Garden.
American Symphony Orchestra featured Michael as the tenor soloist in the North American premiere of Vladimir Shcherbachov’s Symphony No. 2 “Blokovskaya”, live from Avery Fisher Hall. 2011 saw Michael debut Manrico Il Trovatore in Ireland and again with Wichita Grand Opera, as well as sing his first Hoffmann Les contes d'Hoffmann with Connecticut Lyric Opera.
In 2010, Michael thrilled audiences in the UK and Poland with his renditions
of great tenor arias, and wowed Texas audiences with his seductive performances as the Duke in Rigoletto. He followed that with successful performances as Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana with Kentucky Opera. In 2009, Michael made his northern European debut in Mainz, Germany, as a "helden-voiced" Don José in Carmen with the Staatstheater Mainz. 2009-10 saw Michael
singing with City Of Birmingham Symphony-Orchestra, El Paso Opera, Tucson Symphony Orchestra,Greater Bridgeport Symphony,and returning to England for another engagement with the Glyndebourne Festival Opera. He returned later in 2009 to the United States for his featured solo concert debut
with Midland Symphony following performances of Don José in Carmen
in Dublin, Ireland. He will return to Dublin in 2011 to sing Manrico
in Verdi's Il trovatore.
In 2008-09, Michael performed Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly in Hong Kong, Don José in Carmen with San Antonio Opera and Glyndebourne Festival Opera and in 2007 with Chautauqua Opera and at the Greek National Opera with
Denyce Graves. He also performed as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly with
Midland Symphony and New York City Opera.
In 2008, he made his official debut in Avery Fisher Hall as the tenor soloist in the North American Premiere of Scherbachyov’s symphony, Blokovskaya with
American Symphony Orchestra conducted by Maestro Leon Botstien.
The New York Times said he "sang with attractive tone and stamina." In 2006, he
appeared with ASO as the 1st Guest in Dargomyzsky’s The Stone Guest again
under the Baton of Leon Botstien at Avery Fisher Hall. He also performed in the Lincoln Center Festival’s production of Goldenthal’s opera, Grendel, directed by Julie Taymor.
He was also personally chosen by Stephen Schwartz in 2008 to sing the role of Charles Clayton in the American Opera Project’s first public reading
of his new opera, Séance On A Wet Afternoon. Before that, he sang the Duke in Rigoletto with Opera In The Heights and Connecticut Lyric Opera.
He also sang Turiddu in Chelsea Opera’s premiere production of Cavaleria
Rusticana, and in July of 2004 performed the role of Male Chorus in Britten’s
Rape of Lucretia to great acclaim with San Francisco Opera’s Merola Opera
program. “The best singing came from...tenor Michael Wade Lee, who
combined heroism and honeyed tenderness in equal measure” (San Francisco
Known for his acting ability and versatility in the operatic repertoireMichael's
many roles include Cavaradossi, Pinkerton, Don José, Turiddu, The Duke, The Male Chorus, Tamino, Nanki-Pooh, Der Hauptmann, the Prince in Rusalka, and Raymond Pocket in Miss Havisham’s Fire. He has sung with Greek National Opera, Glyndebourne Festival Opera, Opera North UK, Royal Opera House at Covent Garden, Staatstheater Mainz, Lyric Opera Productions (Ireland), Musica Viva (Hong Kong), The Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, DiCapo Opera, Chelsea Opera, Merola @ The San Francisco Opera, San Antonio Opera, Kentucky Opera, Wichita Grand Opera, Mississippi Opera, Chautauqua Opera, Nashville Opera, Annapolis Opera, El Paso Opera, Connecticut Lyric Opera, Opera In The Heights, Raylynmor Opera, and Indiana Opera Theater. He created the role of The Actor in the world premiere
of Fireworks! a new American opera by Kitty Brazelton, with American Opera Projects in New York. In addition, Mr. Lee has been a member of
Pacific Opera’s roster since 2002.
Michael Wade Lee has appeared in concert with American Symphony Orchestra, Midland Symphony,Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Pilska Orkiestra Klasyczna, Kalamazoo Symphony, Bridgeport Symphony and San Antonio Symphony, as well as the San Francisco Opera Orchestra conducted by Stephen Lord at the San Francisco War Memorial, and on the stages of Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, Alice Tully Hall, and Merkin Hall. His concert and oratorio repertoire include
the tenor soloist in Scherbachyov’s Blokovskaya, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Handel’s Messiah, Saint-Saens’ Christmas Oratorio, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Haydn’s The Creation.
A native of Texas, Michael received his BM from Stephen F. Austin State University under the guidance of Dr. Deborah Ann Dalton, and his MM from Indiana University. He was consistently a finalist in the Texoma region's NATS competitions. He also won the Metropolitan
Opera National Council encouragement award in Indiana in 2000 as well as being endowed with the prestigious Merola Career Grant and the Pacific Opera Career Grant, both since 2004.