James KEE Tenor


In 2002 James Kee added two important roles to his repertoire: ALBERT GREGOR, which he portrayed at the Würzburg Mainfrankentheater and TANNHÄUSER at the Heidenheim Festival.

"James Kee beguiled ... with a beautiful, flexible and colourful voice, paired with irrepressible playfulness and wit, intonation-proof and musically"

the opera magazine OPERNGLAS wrote about the sympathetic, young tenor, who was lately a member of the Volkstheater Rostock ensemble. Here, he had already been celebrated as MAX in by Weber's “DerFreischütz”, as EISENSTEIN in “Die Fledermaus”, as BALDUIN ZEDLAU in Strauss' “Wiener Blut”, EDWIN in “Die Czardasfürstin”, PETER IVANOW in “Zar und Zimmermann”, but also as CANIO in Leoncavallo's “I Pagliacci” and in a Puccini-Pasticcio. He also succeeded as FLORESTAN in Beethoven's “Fidelio” and as SYMON in Millöcker's “Der Bettelstudent”.

James Kee began his vocal studies at the Curtis Institute of music in Philadelphia (USA). Master classes, he attended a.o. with Marilyn Horne, Dolora Zajick, Thomas Hampson and James Levine. Discovered as a young vocal talent - he sang baritone - he made his way to major international companies such as the Houston Grand Opera and later even to the Deutsche Oper Berlin.

When he moved to the dramatic repertoire, he was accompanied by his current teacher Robert Gambill. First, James sang at the Volkstheater Rostock tenor parts such as ISMAELE in Verdi's “Nabucco”, EISENSTEIN and the TENOR SOLO PART in Beethoven's 9th Symphony.

James Kee's passion for Contemporary Music has also been featured in numerous concerts and CD recordings of works by major composers such as Ned Rorem, Richard Danielpour, Jake Heggie and Andre Previn.

Born in the US, hewon a number of prestigious awards, including the 1st Prize of the Mario Lanza Competition, the 2nd Prize of the Eleanor McCollum Competition and the 3rd Prize of the Middle Atlantic Region of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Competition.

In the season 19/20 he debuted a.o. as LOGE in “Das Rheingold” at the Theatre Würzburg.


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