Quinn Kelsey current season begins with his role debut as Count di Luna in Il Trovatore with the San Francisco Opera, followed by The Cunning Little Vixen with Seiji Ozawa at the Teatro Comunale . . . in Florence and his New York City Opera debut as Sharpless in Madama Butterfly. In the summer, he will return to the Bregenz Festival for Amonasro in Aida. Mr. Kelsey will also be heard in recital in Honolulu. Future projects include debuts at the Canadian Opera Company, the Norwegian Opera and returns to the San Francisco Opera, the Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Metropolitan Opera.
Quinn Kelsey’s recent projects included the baritone’s debut at the San Francisco Opera as Marcello in La Bohème and two role debuts: Germont in La Traviata with Opera Memphis and Valentin in Faust with Opera Grand Rapids. In the summer Mr. Kelsey made his European debut as Amonasro in Aida with the Bregenz Festival. In concert, the Hawaiian baritone was heard in works by Leonard Bernstein and as the Baritone Soloist in Mahler’s 8th Symphony with Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony, which was just released commercially. Quinn Kelsey was also the Baritone Soloist in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony and in Orff’s Carmina Burana with the Honolulu Symphony, as well as the Baritone Soloist in Mahler’s 8th Symphony with the Milwaukee Symphony and he returned to San Francisco in a solo recital, as part of the celebrated Schwabacher Debut Series.
Last season Mr. Kelsey returned to the Lyric Opera of Chicago to sing Marcello in La Bohème and the Messenger Spirit in Die Frau ohne Schatten. He had a very successful debut at the Metropolitan Opera as Schaunard in La Bohème followed by his first Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor with Madison Opera. Quinn Kelsey appeared in concert with the Grant Park Music Festival as the Bass Soloist in Szymanowski’s Stabat Mater. Another exciting event was the baritone’s debut at the Saito Kinen Festival in the summer as the Forester in Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen with Seiji Ozawa conducting.
In past seasons Quinn Kelsey sang Ping in Turandot and covered Thoas in Iphigénie en Tauride as well as the Count di Luna in Il Trovatore with the Lyric Opera of Chicago. He also returned to Hawaii Opera Theater for the role of Sharpless in Madama Butterfly and was heard in recital at Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall and at the Kennedy Center under the auspices of the Marilyn Horne Foundation and on their “On Wings of Song” Series in New York City, as well as in Los Angeles at the Cerritos Center in the Jose Iturbi Recital Series. In concert, Quinn Kelsey sang the baritone solo in Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana with Carlos Kalmar and the Grant Park Music Festival. Other engagements included a return to Hawaii Opera Theater for the role of Ping in Turandot, the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s 50th Anniversary concert celebration and Marilyn Horne’s Birthday Gala at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall. In the summer, Mr. Kelsey appeared as Montano and the Herald in Verdi’s Otello at the Ravinia Festival with James Conlon. Previous appearances at the Lyric Opera of Chicago included Wagner in Faust (for the baritone’s house debut), Yamadori and the Registrar in Madama Butterfly, the Forester in The Cunning Little Vixen, covers of Rigoletto, Donner in Das Rheingold, Amonasro in Aida, Jules in William Bolcom’s The Wedding and performances of Morales and Escamillo in Carmen, as well as of Monterone in Rigoletto.
In concert, Quinn Kelsey has performed Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Duruflé’s Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Fauré’s Requiem, Mozart’s Requiem, Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors, Rutter’s Requiem, Beethoven’s Mass in C, Thompson’s Peaceable Kingdom, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass and Creation, and Puccini’s Messa di Gloria with major orchestral and choral organizations throughout Hawaii, including the Honolulu Symphony and the Maui Symphony as well as the Chicago Youth Symphony and the Chicago Children’s Choir.
Mr. Kelsey first performed with Hawaii Opera Theater as a teenaged chorus member and has since returned as a principal artist, appearing as Melot in Tristan und Isolde, Yamadori in Madama Butterfly, and most recently Marcello in La Bohème, a role he has also performed with the Merola Opera Program and the Western Opera Theater tour.
Most recently Mr. Kelsey won a Richard Tucker Foundation Career Grant (after winning a Sarah Tucker Study Grant) and was a finalist of the 2004 Placido Domingo Operalia Competition. In 2003 Quinn Kelsey won a Scholarship from the Solti Foundation of Chicago. Born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, Mr. Kelsey received his Bachelor’s of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Hawaii at Manoa under John W. Mount.