James McLennan

Tenor

James McLennan

Tenor

Canadian Citizenship

 

James McLennan has been celebrated for his “emotional intensity” (Opera News), “considerable charm,” and “strong yet pure tenor,” (Toronto Star) in a career encompassing over 25 roles on opera stages across Canada. 

This season Jamie appears as Goro in Madama Butterfly at Manitoba Opera, Luther Billis in South Pacific for Calgary Opera, and Gastone in La Traviata for Manitoba Opera. He also reprises the role of Jeune Bilodeau in Les Feluettes at Edmonton Opera, following the acclaimed world premiere at Montreal Opera and Pacific Opera Victoria last year. Jamie will also tour the Canadian prairies with the University of Manitoba Faculty of Music, performing A Prairie Boy’s Life, a new work for four singers and two pianists by John Greer. 

Past opera credits include Brighella in Ariadne auf Naxos (Pacific Opera Victoria), Bardolfo in Falstaff (Manitoba Opera), Caïus in Falstaff (Hamilton Opera, Montreal Opera), Almaviva in The Barber of Seville (Edmonton Opera), Goro in Madama Butterfly (Montreal Opera, Pacific Opera Victoria), Pang in Turandot (Edmonton Opera), Triquet in Eugene Onegin (Vancouver Opera, Edmonton Opera), Gastone in La Traviata (Calgary Opera, Vancouver Opera), Spoletta in Tosca and Remendado in Carmen (Opera Lyra Ottawa), Beppe in Pagliacci (Hamilton Opera), and the title role in Candide (Toronto Operetta Theatre, Windsor Symphony).

On the concert stage, James has appeared with the Vancouver Bach Choir (Bach Mass in B Minor), the Amadeus Choir (Bach St. John Passion), the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra (Haydn’s Creation, Tavener Requiem), Toronto Mendelssohn Choir (Handel’s Israel in Egypt), the Grand Philharmonic Choir (Bach Magnificat), Toronto Classical Singers (Mozart Requiem), the Prince George Symphony (Carmina Burana), Pax Christi Choral (Mendelssohn’s Saint Paul Oratorio) and Ottawa’s Thirteen Strings (Britten’s The Company of Heaven, Haydn’s Saint Nicholas Mass).

This fall Jamie joins the Desautels Faculty of Music at the University of Manitoba as a voice instructor. An alumnus of the Second City Training Centre in Toronto, he is also a certified French translator.

September 2017

 

OPERA

Beethoven Jaquino FIDELIO
Bernstein Candide CANDIDE
Bizet Remendado CARMEN
  Silvio LE DOCTEUR MIRACLE
Britten Lysander
Quint
A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM
THE TURN OF THE SCREW
Donizetti Ernesto
Nemorino
Tonio
Arturo
DON PASQUALE
L’ELISIR D’AMORE
LA FILLE DU  RÉGIMENT
LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR
Estacio Stephano FILUMENA
Gounod Tybalt ROMÉO ET JULIETTE
Handel Oronte
Sesto
Grimoaldo
ALCINA
GIULIO CESARE
RODELINDA
Kálmán Laczi ZIGEUNERPRIMAS
Leoncavallo Beppe PAGLIACCI
Mozart Ferrando
Pedrillo
Don Ottavio
Tamino
Soliman/Gomatz
The Lover
COSÌ FAN TUTTE
DIE ENTFÜHRUNG AUS DEM SERAIL
DON GIOVANNI
DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE
ZÄIDE
AMELIA GOES TO THE BALL
Offenbach Paris LA BELLE  HÉLÈNE
  Andrès/Cochenille/Frantz LES CONTES D’HOFFMANN
Puccini Goro MADAMA BUTTERFLY
Rossini Almaviva
Don Ramiro
Lindoro
IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA
LA CENERENTOLA
L’ITALIANA IN ALGERI
Strauss, J.
Strauss, R.
Alfred
Tanzmeister
Innkeeper
DIE FLEDERMAUS
ARIADNE OF NAXOS
DER ROSENKAVALIER
Strauss, R. Fourth Jew SALOME
Sullivan Nanki-Poo
Frederick
THE MIKADO
THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE
Tchaikovsky Triquet EUGENE ONEGIN
Verdi Fenton
Gastone
FALSTAFF
LA TRAVIATTA
Weill 2nd tenor THE SEVEN DEADLY SINS

 

CONCERT

Bach Johannes Passion (Evangelist and Arias)
Magnificat
Mass in B minor
Matthäus Passion (Evangelist and arias)
Weihnachtsoratorium
Britten Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings
St. Nicolas
Handel Messiah
Ode for St. Cecilia’s Day
Haydn Die Schöpfung
Nelson Messe
Missa Sancti Nicolai
Mozart Krönungsmesse
Mass in C minor
Requiem in D minor
Orff Carmina Burana
Rossini

TavenerPetite Messe Solennelle
Stabat Mater
Requiem

 

RECITAL REPERTOIRE

Complete list available upon request

“Tous les seconds rôles sont joués et chantés avec brio. Le ténor canadien James McLennan (Bardolfo)…les serviteurs bouffons de Falstaff, sont hilarants…ils chantent bien et sont de très bons acteurs.” [Falstaff, Manitoba Opera] La Liberté, Pierre Meunier

“Winnipeg native McLennan summoned up dramatic intensity when needed and with his terrific diction and lyrical delivery was another star of the night.” (Haydn’s Creation)
Winnipeg Free Press, Gwenda Nemerofsky

“Tenor James McLennan was a youthful Evangelist, a part suitable only for tenors of a special type. McLennan is clearly such a tenor…he managed the challenges of the role admirably and was also able to sing the tenor arias as well…he will undoubtedly be in considerable demand as a Bach singer.” 
Calgary Herald

“Tenor James McLennan’s boyish good looks and fresh-faced innocence made him an ideal Candide. The richness of his voice and the emotional intensity he gave “It Must Be So” and “Nothing More Than This” lent the character and the opera the depth they require so crucially.”
Opera News

“The standout in terms of diction, voice, pitch and character intensity was tenor McLennan, who becomes more impressive with each outing. He possesses a sweet lyric voice of great promise, and he finds the edge when the drama is needed.” 
Opera Canada

“At the top of the positive side of the ledger are two smashing performances from James McLennan as Candide and Jean Stilwell as The Old Lady…McLennan offers us an 18th-century Charlie Brown, with a sweetly smiling face no matter how grim the world gets. He also radiates considerable charm and sings with a strong yet pure tenor that does full justice to Bernstein’s arias.” 
Toronto Star

“Tenor James McLennan in the title role displays a pleasing voice and is definitely someone to keep an eye on as his career develops.”
Classical 96.3

“As the Evangelist, James McLennan showed more than potential. Dispassionate when required, expressive when the music called for it.”
Le Devoir de Montréal

“Sober dramatization and perfect style.” (St. John Passion)
La Presse de Montréal

 “The two leads, Tracy Smith Bessette and James McLennan, performed amazing vocal feats.” (La Fille du Régiment) 
La Tribune Sherbrooke

“The vocal timbre of James McLennan…proved to be very moving when he sang with admirable sensitivity what is probably the best known aria of this opera: ‘Un aura amorosa’.” (Cosí fan tutte)
L’Acadie Nouvelle

“McLennan was solid as Almaviva…he was hilarious as the drunken soldier and as the “music teacher.” Almaviva is really an amalgam of many roles, and McLennan pulled off the changing personalities beautifully.” (Il Barbiere di Siviglia)
Saskatoon Star Phoenix

 

Excerpts of Bardolfo in Falstaff (Manitoba Opera, November 2016)

Excerpts of Luther Billis in South Pacific (Calgary Opera, August 2017)