"He is as brilliant as he is erratic."
- the GM of my bar
A Maine native considered by the Portland Press Herald as “a countertenor with a pleasingly warm, powerful tone,”James M. Brown has been seen performing repertoire of diversity throughout Canada and the United States. In the 2019-2020 season, he makes his company debut with Bootless Stageworks as the title roles in Grindr: The Opera, Amahl & the Night Visitors with Music on Site Inc., and returns to The Oratorio Society of Richmond as Joachim in Handel’s Susanna. Last season he was seen singing the roles of La Dame Ragonde in Rossini’s Le Comte Ory and Dritte Dame in Die Zauberflöte with Chicago Summer Opera, as well as performing the roles of Mercutio in Romeo & Juliet and Thomas Tallis in the improvisational Elizabethan Entertainments with Shakespeare Opera Theatre.
Excited by the creation of new music and the performance of contemporary stories, James has been seen in the North American Premiere of East O’ the Sun, West O’ the Moon by rising opera composer James Garner as The Troll Princess. In concert, he joined composer and conductor Nisan Ak in her premiere of Singing Bindings based on the Gregorian chants found as book bindings by the Smithsonian Libraries. Mr. Brown also has the pleasure of performing Peter Dayton’s The Need of Comrades: A Gay Cantata based on the text of Calamus by Walt Whitman.
James has been hailed by L’Opéra as “a voice well controlled in the whole range for playing the cold menace” whilst portraying the role of the Sorceress in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas during the Opera McGill B!nge Festival. Other noteworthy work includes both Polinesso in Handel’s Ariodante and an “irresistible” Old Lady in Bernstein’s Candide. James has also found a place on the concert stage with Orff’s Carmina Burana and Mendelssohn’s Elijah with the Schulich School of Music, as well as a presentation of staged Britten art songs in collaboration with the Montreal Rose Festival. Joined by notable talent in the New England concert scene, he has been involved with the Portland Rossini Club, Bay Chamber Concert Series, and White Mountain Music Festival with works by Britten, Bolcom, and Bach.
Mr. Brown holds degrees from McGill University and the University of Southern Maine.