Andrew Stenson is quickly building a reputation as one of the United States’ most exciting young tenors, with a brilliant tone, artistic intellect, and superb portrayals of a variety of roles. He is the first prize winner in both the 2015 Giulio Gari International Vocal Competition and 2016 Gerda Lissner Foundation Competition. He is also the recipient of a 2011 Sara Tucker Study Grant from the Richard Tucker Foundation.
During the 2019-2020 season, Mr. Stenson will make his debut with Opera Colorado as Almaviva in Il barbiere di Siviglia. He will return to Utah Opera as Sprink in their production of Silent Night, and appear with St. Paul Chamber Orchestra in Mozart’s Requiem.
Mr. Stenson’s 2018-2019 season began with his Dallas Opera debut as the Steersman in Der Fliegende Holländer. He joined the Minnesota Opera as Fadinard in The Italian Straw Hat, as well as Utah Opera as Tamino in Die Zauberflöte. He appeared with Mostly Mozart Festival for Mozart’s Requiem, the Cincinnati Symphony for St. Matthew Passion, and the Philadelphia Orchestra as King Kaspar in Amahl and the Night Visitors.
The 2017-2018 season included the tenor’s role and company debut with Wexford Festival Opera as Ernesto in Foroni’s Margherita. He also returned to the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Ferrando in Cosi fan tutte, sang the title role of Candide with the San Francisco Symphony, and made his company debut with Opera Theatre of St. Louis in the world premiere of the two-act version of An American Soldier, singing the role of Danny Chen.
Mr. Stenson’s 2016-2017 season included appearances as Tamino in Die Zauberflöte with Seattle Opera, Frederic in Pirates of Penzance with Palm Beach Opera, the title role of Candide with Théâtre du Capitole, Toulouse, and Opéra National de Bordeaux, and a company debut with Washington National Opera as Tonio in La fille du Régiment. He also appeared in concert with the Kansas City Symphony for Mozart’s Requiem. He concluded the season with a return to Glyndebourne Festival Opera to sing Ernesto in Don Pasquale.
During the 2015-2016 season, Andrew Stenson made his Lyric Opera of Chicago debut, singing Gen in the world premiere of Bel Canto. He also debuted with Arizona Opera as Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, and with Fort Worth Opera as Count Almaviva in Il barbiere di Siviglia. In concert, he sang the Messiah with the Cincinnati Symphony and Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings with the Rochester Philharmonic.
In the 2014-2015 season, the tenor finished as a member of the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program. Amongst his assignments, he performed Beppe in Pagliacci, in a new production conducted by Fabio Luisi. In the summer he returned to the Glimmerglass Festival, as the title role in Candide.
Andrew Stenson was a 2nd year member of the Lindemann Program during the 2013-2014 season. He performed Demetrius in The Enchanted Island at the Metropolitan Opera, and also made a return to Seattle Opera as Tonio in La fille du régiment, and his role debut as Belmonte in Die entführung aus dem Serail with Utah Opera. Additionally, Mr. Stenson appeared on the concert stage with the Seattle Symphony and Nashville Symphony, for Handel’s Messiah, and sang Mozart’s Requiem with the Hartford Symphony Orchestra. In June 2014, he made his Washington National Opera debut as Danny Chen in Huang Ruo’s An American Soldier.
The summer of 2012 found him with San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program for Argento’s Postcard from Morocco. During the 2012-2013 season, Mr. Stenson joined the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program. His assignments at the Metropolitan Opera that season included Esquire #3 in the company’s new production of Parsifal. The season also found his debuts with the San Francisco Symphony, for Handel’s Messiah, and with the Glyndebourne Festival Opera, as Brighella in a new production of Ariadne auf Naxos.
Mr. Stenson began the 2011-2012 season with the Seattle Opera as Le Remendado in the mainstage production of Carmen. Continuing the season, he performed Orphée in Orphée et Euridice, replacing an indisposed colleague on short nice, and performed both the title role in Werther and Ernesto in Don Pasquale in the company’s Young Artist Productions. Also in 2011-2012, Mr. Stenson made his Metropolitan Opera as a Rameau Quartet Member in The Enchanted Island, and made his role debut as Cassio in Knoxville Opera’s production of Otello. The summer of 2012 found him with San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program for Argento’s Postcard from Morocco.
The tenor joined the Seattle Opera as a member of its Young Artist Program for the 2010-2011 season, where his roles included Arturo in Lucia di Lammermoor on the mainstage, and Don Ottavio in the Young Artist production of Don Giovanni. In the summer of 2011, he returned to the Glimmerglass Festival, performing Jimmy O’Keefe in John Musto’s Later the Same Evening.
In previous seasons, the tenor appeared as Martin in The Tender Land with Glimmerglass Opera. Mr. Stenson was a Young Artist with the Santa Fe Opera in 2009, where he covered Head Man in The Letter and received the D. Gramm Memorial Award. He was a Regional Finalist in the 2010 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.
Mr. Stenson is the 2015 recipient of the Richard F. Gold Career Grant from the Shoshana Foundation (Lindemann Program), a Major Award Winner from Opera Index (2015), Second Prize winner from the Queen Sonja International Vocal Competition (2013), and Second Prize winner from the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation (2015).
Andrew Stenson completed his Master’s Degree in Music at Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM). He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Music from Luther College.
|Argento||Man with Old Luggage||Postcard from Morocco|
|Britten||Title role||Albert Herring|
|The Novice||Billy Budd|
|Male Chorus||The Rape of Lucretia|
|Peter Quint/Prologue||Turn of the screw|
|Copland||Martin||The Tender Land|
|Tonio||La fille du regiment|
|Arturo||Lucia di Lammermoor|
|Gluck||Achille||Iphigenie en Aulide|
|Orphee||Orphee et Euridice|
|Floyd||Curly||Of Mice and Men|
|Gilbert and Sullivan||Frederic||The Pirates of Penzance|
|Lopez||Gen Watanabe||Bel Canto|
|Menotti||Kaspar||Amahl and the Night Visitors|
|Mozart||Ferrando||Cosi fan tutte|
|Don Ottavio||Don Giovanni|
|Belmonte/ Pedrillo||Die Entfuering aus dem Serail|
|Musto||Jimmy O'Keefe||Later the Same Evening|
|Puts||Nikolaus Sprink||Silent Night|
|Rossini||Almaviva||Il barbiere di Siviglia|
|Rota||Fadinard||The Italian Straw Hat|
|Ruo||Danny Chen||An American Soldier|
|Sams||Demetrius||The Enchanted Island|
|Sheng||Bao Yu||The Dream of the Red Chamber|
|R. Strauss||Brighella||Ariadne auf Naxos|
|Henry Morosus*||Die schweigsame Frau|
|Alfredo *||La Traviata|
|Wagner||Steuermann||Der Fliegende Hollander|
|David*||Die Meistersinger von Nuernberg|
|Weill||Tenor||The Seven Deadly Sins|
|Bach||Johannes-Passion||Evangelist, Tenor soloist|
|Matthaus-Passion||Tenor soloist, Evangelist|
|Mass in B minor||Tenor soloist|
|Beethoven||Mass in G||Tenor soloist|
|9th Symphony||Tenor soloist|
|Britten||Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings||Soloist|
|War Requiem||Tenor soloist*|
|Israel in Egypt||Tenor soloist|
|Haydn||The Creation||Tenor soloist (English)|
|Mendelssohn||Elijah||Tenor Soloist (English)|
|Mozart||Mass in C||Tenor soloist|
|Die Schuldigkeit des erstens Gebots||Tenor soloist|
ST MATTHEW PASSION, CINCINNATI SYMPHONY 2019
“There were also excellent contributions from tenor Andrew Stenson, who handled florid passages with aplomb”
THE MAGIC FLUTE, UTAH OPERA 2019
“Andrew Stenson’s fine lyric tenor was silvery and strong as Tamino. Stenson had total mastery of vocal and dramatic demands throughout the evening, pouring out his heart in “Dies Bildnis ist bezaubernd schön.” He also brought uncommon definition and consequence to the extended recitative with Seth Keeton’s stentorian Speaker.
“Andrew Stenson as Tamino is a valiant and amiable tenor, with a velvet voice that easily reaches every note”
At Salt Lake City’s Capitol Theater, Utah Opera’s The Magic Flute Celebrates Unconventional True Love
“Stenson is an ideal casting choice for an idealistic young hero. He is able to tackle moments of virtuous solemnity as well as the unlikely melodrama that is a trademark of Mozart’s comic operas. “
Utah Opera’s superb cast, colorful staging make for an entertaining “Magic Flute”
The quality of the orchestra playing provided a firm foundation for a superb cast of singers, each of whom seemed a natural fit for their roles. Led by Andrew Stenson as Tamino and Zulimar López-Hernández as Pamina the cast was consistently engaging–vocally polished and alive to the comedy as well as the dramatic moments.
Stenson established Tamino’s heroic presence from the start with his lyrical tenor in “Dies Bildnis,” sustaining this high level of performance throughout”
ITALIAN STRAW HAT, MN OPERA 2019
“Minnesota native Andrew Stenson makes his Minnesota Opera debut in the central role of Fadinard, and gives a totally winning performance. He has a strong, pleasing tenor that conveys the humor and wit in the libretto, as well as the emotional tenor of his duet with Elena. Stenson also does a swell job with the physical comedy the part demands.”
“Native Minnesotan Andrew Stenson made his house debut leading the cast as groom Fadinard. His voice was wonderful with many extended high notes, and with the style of a true straight man did his best to keep the zany actions of his costars on track”
“Andrew Stesnon (as Fadinard) sings such an enchanting Act I arietta “Io voglio quel cappello” that you would hardly think it’s about a trifle like a hat… Lisa Marie Rogali (as Elena)’s beautifully rendered duet “Trema nell’estasi d’amor” / “Oh si…è gioia” with Stenson/Fadinard was one of the highlights of the opera.”
“Andrew Stenson, a Minnesota native, plays the frustrated groom Fadinard, with both believability and enthusiasm. He also delivers the masterful operatic voice to match, as his character appears on stage for almost the entire four acts.
In Fardinard’s passionate frustration and fury before he can return to his Paris home and bed his bride Elena, he searches far and wide to find another hat that his horse ate by chance. Stenson defines the poignant moments together with a style of Commedia del’arte comedy popular in 16th century Italy, a commanding task, while the ludicrous situations happen because the lady whose hat was eaten confessed that this was a gift from her overly jealous husband.”
“At its center was the super-energized performance of Minnesota native Andrew Stenson as the waylaid husband-to-be Fadinard. With a lot of singing to do, Stenson was rarely offstage. His dryish tenor rode the orchestra tirelessly, and he acted up a storm amid the gathering mayhem generated by his horse’s indiscretion.”
DER FLIEGENDE HOLLANDER, DALLAS OPERA 2018
As the Steersman, a role often given to reedy character tenors, Andrew Stenson supplied some genuinely beautiful singing, including a warm, baritonal lower register
I first heard Andrew Stenson as Danny Chen in the powerful premiere of “An American Soldier” at the Opera Theater of St. Louis this past summer. There he showed how he could master a long, challenging role. Here he proved he can make something big out of a small one. The Steersman of Daland’s ship does not have much music, but he has an important ballad early on, “Mit Gewitter und Sturm aus fernem Meer.” In it, he sings about roughing the waves to reach his lover, a tuneful but somewhat platitudinous piece that serves as a foil to the twisted love story to follow.
Stenson’s voice fit the music perfectly. It is slender and flexible, but tends toward darker colors and has a resonant middle that give it weight. These qualities allow him to impart the aria with enough sailor earthiness to suggest both irony and mirth.
Stenson is also a good actor and succeeded during his many non-singing moments. At the end he stands out as he wanders gloomily and entranced. The character, initially so full of good-natured simplicity, seems to articulate a general message of despair.
AN AMERICAN SOLDIER, OPERA THEATRE OF SAINT LOUIS 2018
Andrew Stenson’s fervent, high-energy performance eloquently captured Danny’s bravado and despair; his vivid tenor managed to be both beautiful and full of raw feeling.
Danny (sung with raw emotion and poignant boyishness by the remarkable tenor Andrew Stenson)
The role of Danny is sung by tenor Andrew Stenson, who sang the role in the one-act version four years ago. His is a beautifully clear, pure, powerful voice-smooth across the entire large range the role requires. And he is a wonderfully committed actor.
“It’s hard to imagine Danny more definitively portrayed than by Andrew Stenson. He exudes decency and aspiration, and astonishing perseverance in the face of appalling mistreatment, and his warm tenor has a multiplicity of colors and textures apt to every situation.”
COSI FAN TUTTE, LYRIC OPERA OF CHICAGO 2018
“Lyric’s international cast is one of the strongest and most satisfyingly integrated vocal ensembles the company has fielded in recent “Cosi” memory….
The fine young American singer Andrew Stenson caressed the cantabile of Ferrando’s “Un’ aura amorosa” with a honeyed lyric tenor, making the aria an honest declaration from a loving heart. He and Hopkins threw themselves gleefully into their masquerade as testosterone-fueled sailors on the make.”
Not to be outdone, tenor Andrew Stenson delivered Ferrando with, at times, Jim Carrey-esque physical humor, but an always sweet lyricism.
“The American tenor served up the highlight of the evening with a beautifully sung “Un’aura amarosa,” rendered with heartfelt sincerity and gorgeous mezzo-voce head voice in the reprise. Stenson also put across Ferrando’s rage at Dorabella’s betrayal, investing “Tradito, schernito” with blistering bitterness.”
CANDIDE, SAN FRANCISCO SYMPHONY 2018
“he sang with wit and charm and a resourceful ability to register emotion equally. Blithely oblivious in his “Oh, Happy We” duet with Picerno, he was instantly, persuasively desolate in “Candide’s Lament,” his voice hushed to a stricken pianissimo, and wrenching in “It Must Be Me.”
In the title role, tenor Andrew Stenson sang with melting tone, summoning an apt air of Candide’s innocence and wonder.
GLIMMERGLASS FESTIVAL 2015
“Tenor Andrew Stenson was perfectly sweet-toned and broadly smiling as the hapless innocent Candide…Stenson’s poignant delivery of “Nothing More Than This,” Candide’s song of disillusionment, made the finale, “Make Our Garden Grow,” the characters’ acceptance of reality, for once actually feel earned.
The mostly young cast deserves the highest praise as well. I first saw Andrew Stenson in 2011. As a Glimmerglass Young Artist, he nearly stole the show in John Musto’s Later the Same Evening. This young man has the vocal chops and the charisma to carry an eponymous role like Candide. A strong but sweet voice and a gentle and sweet persona on stage made Mr. Stenson’s portrayal a success. When Candide learns his beloved Cunegonde is supposed dead, his pain is palpable, and when after two and a half hours of reunions and separations, he finally realizes how Cunegonde has survived all this time, we feel the same loss and pain, with added anger.
IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA, FORT WORTH OPERA 2016
Andrew Stenson is the rare Count Almaviva who actually looks plausible disguised as a poor student. And here’s another excellent voice, a lyric tenor that can croon beautifully or blaze on high, tossing off fireworks as needed.
(Notable Classical Performances of 2016 - Dallas News) Fort Worth Opera: The Barber of Seville (May 8). This was an easy choice for opera production of the year, with “brilliant singing, characters irresistibly portrayed and superb playing from members of the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra.”
Lyric tenor Andrew Stenson is excellent in the role. None of the passagework in the first aria, which has bedeviled many a tenor, poses a problem for him. He even tosses in a clear trill or two.
BEL CANTO, LYRIC OPERA OF CHICAGO 2015
“Mr. Hosokawa’s polyglot translator and aide, Gen Watanabe, sung by the appealing, rich-toned tenor Andrew Stenson, winds up intensely in love with Carmen, a rough, weapon-wielding terrorist, sung by the plush-voiced mezzo-soprano J’nai Bridges, who sees in Gen a good man who can teach her languages and unleash her femininity.”
Mezzo-soprano J’nai Bridges immerses herself in the character of a female soldier who breaks down her personal barriers to find love; her prayer aria is one of the evening’s highlights, hauntingly, heartbreakingly sung. With his expressive tenor, truthful characterization and easy physicality, Andrew Stenson is a charming match as her love interest.
ABDUCTION FROM THE SERAGLIO, UTAH OPERA 2014
Andrew Stenson makes his Utah Opera debut with his performance of Belmonte. The tenor is the standout star of the show with his striking voice and excellent delivery of the comedic one-liners.
Andrew Stenson portrays the young aristocrat Belmonte, who spends the opera trying to liberate his beloved Konstanze. Stenson’s voice has a pleasing heft, and the sensitivity of his phrasing makes him a most appealing hero. Keep an eye on this up-and-coming tenor.
FILLE DU REGIMENT, SEATTLE OPERA 2013
On Sunday, the only cast change was the arrival of tenor Andrew Stenson as Tonio. Another former Young Artist, Stenson is an adroit performer who seems born to sing this music; his Tonio has a lot of finesse.
Among the uniformly excellent players, there were two surprises. The first was tenor Andrew Stenson in the matinee cast. I missed his previous major role at Seattle Opera (Orphée, in 2012), so the excellence of his Tonio last Sunday afternoon caught me completely unprepared. His singing was at least the equal of Lawrence Brownlee’s opening night performance, and his comedic talent far surpassed Brownlee’s. His adorable, round face was so expressive and full of fun that I couldn’t put down my binoculars. Even his responses while others sang were a delight. Vocally, his tone was lovely and securely produced from top to bottom. The nine high C’s of his first aria appeared easy, with the final C held long and loud while he made a slow 360-degree rotation before releasing it face-on to the audience.
ORPHEE ET EURIDICE, SEATTLE OPERA 2012 MARCH 4, 2012
“Seattle Opera audience members who were ready to fall on their swords at the news that William Burden, the undisputed star of the current “Orphée et Eurydice,” was unable to perform on March 4th found much to enjoy in the remarkable performance of Burden’s cover, Andrew Stenson…Stenson commands an apparently limitless range, a highly developed vocal agility with remarkably good trills, and a passionate conviction that reaches right into the house…A mighty ovation greeted the cast and production team, with a big crescendo for Andrew Stenson and his “a star is born” afternoon in McCaw Hall.”