James KEE Tenor


With ALBERT GREGOR in “Vec Makropulos” at the Würzburg Theatre and TANNHÄUSER at the Heidenheim Festival, James Kee added two important parts to his repertoire in 2022. At the beginning of the season he enjoyed great success as TANNHÄUSER at the Wartburg in Eisenach. In autumn 2022 he also sings this very role at the Teatro Comunale di Modena and at the Teatro Reggio Emilia in Italy.

Before, the tenor was a member of the Rostock Theatre ensemble. Here, he enthralled as MAX in “ Der Freischütz”, als EISENSTEIN in "Die Fledermaus", als BALDUIN ZEDLAU in “Wiener Blut”, as EDWIN in “Die Csárdásfürstin”, as PETER IWANOW in “Zar und Zimmermann”, but also as als CANIO in “I Pagliacci”, in a Puccini-Pasticcio and as FLORESTAN in “Fidelio” and as SYMON in “Der Bettelstudent”.

James Kee started his singing studies at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. He took master classes with Marilyn Horne, Dolora Zajick, Thomas Hampson and James Levine. As a young singing talent - at that time he was still singing the baritone repertoire - his career took him to major international houses such as the Houston Grand Opera and later evento the Deutsche Oper Berlin.

Changing to the tenor repertoire, he was accompanied by his current teacher Robert Gambill. Initially James sang at the Rostock Theatre first tenor parts such as ISMAELE in “Nabucco”, EISENSTEIN in “Die Fledermaus” and the TENOR SOLO PART in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony.

In numerous concerts and CD recordings with works by famous composers such as Ned Rorem, Richard Danielpour, Jake Heggie and Andre Previn, James Kee could express his passion for Contemporary Music.

The American by birth has won numerous renowned Prizes such as the 1st Prize of the Mario Lanza Contest, the 2nd Prize of the Eleanor McCollum Contest and the 3rd Prize of the Middle Atlantic Region of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Contest.

In the season 2019/20 James Kee made his debut as LOGE in “Rheingold” at the Mainfrankentheater Würzburg.


Teatro comunale di Modena – Tannhäuser – TANNHÄUSER
A enormous gain is the top-class cast with five great voices, which are necessary for the five main roles: bright and powerful in their lyrical and dramatical singing ( in the essential passages), always without any coercion , James Kee’s voice ( in the title role on November 13), with a phrasing range which is truly extraordinary,…
Festival Heidenheim – Tannhäuser - TANNHÄUSER
The American James Kee in the title role shows his powerful tenor voice with perfectly effortless high notes.
Orpheus, Antje Rößler - Sept/Oct. 2022
With the Rome Narrative, in which he works through his experiences at the Holy See in Wolfram’s presence, the American tenor James Kee literally surpassed himself. His performance was simply perfect, radiating pure drama and even in the accurate vocal exaggeration he stuck to the score. He only had one goal: the way to Mount Venus, back into the arms of the goddess of love, which he once had wantonly left. In the dramatical parts Kee convinced with perfect stage presence, willing to explore his vocal limits.
DAS OPERNGLAS 9/2022 , J.-M.Wienecke
In his intimately sung Rome Narrative, which James Kee performed from the first row next to us, he suddenly is a different man. Remorseful and wise. What Kee presents us here with profound tenoral brilliance is impressively modern.
James Kee portrayal of the Enfant terrible is fantastic and as a singer he does not only persevere ( which is a real achievement, considering the long narration in the last act) ,he even got better.
Stuttgarter Nachrichten
This destruction of all hopes is vocally and dramatically portrayed in a most impressive way by… James Kee with a phenomenal soul transmigration as Tannhäuser.
Online Merker
Mainfranken Theater Würzburg - Die Sache Makropulos - ALBERT GREGOR
And James Kee portrays the character of Albert Gregor with tenoral emphasis.
OPERNWELT 03/22 , Gerhard R. Koch
Mainfrankentheater Würzburg – Die Sache Makropulos – ALBERT GREGOR
Apart from Ilia Papandreou, Kosma Ranuer as rugged-robust Jaroslaw Prus and James Kee as vigorously demanding Albert Gregor were vocally truly convincing in this good ensemble.
Die Deutsche Bühne
Volkstheater Rostock – Der Bajazzo - CANIO
James J. Kee sang the part of the deceived Canio. His aria „Vesti la giubba„... was convincingly performed with plenty of emotions. The audience was impressed... „a fantastic voice and secure, splendid heights. All with a perfect sound – round, beautiful, fantastic! „ A great success for the American tenor.
Das Opernmagazin
Volkstheater Rostock – Fidelio - FLORESTAN
Superbe James J. Kee as Floristan in Rostock .
junge Welt
Festival Heidenheim - Tannhäuser - TANNHÄUSER
Photo: Oliver Vogel
Volkstheater Rostock – La Signora Doria - PUCCINI
Volkstheater Rostock – Der Bajazzo - CANIO