Tenor Fred C. VanNess, Jr. performs a wide variety of repertoire on stages across New England. Praised for his “superb talent” and “gorgeous vocals”, Mr. VanNess has appeared as Paris in Boston Lyric Opera’s production of Romeo and Juliette, Russell Davenport in Dan Shore’s acclaimed opera Freedom Ride presented in a co-production by MASSOpera and Chicago Opera Theater and numerous other productions throughout New England. Mr. VanNess is a Boston Lyric Opera Jane and Steven Akin Emerging Artists where he covered the title role of Omar and sang the roles of Amadu and Renty in Rhiannon Giddens and Michael Abels new opera Omar in a new co-production by Boston Lyric Opera with Spoleto Festival USA, L.A. Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago and San Francisco Opera.
An avid concert performer, Mr. VanNess is a member of Castle of our Skins, an organization dedicated to celebrating Black artistry through music. With Castle of our Skins, he has performed the tenor solos in the world premiere of Samuel Beebe’sRemember the Sea alongside various solos in their Night Songs concert. Recently, he appeared as the tenor quartet soloist in the world premiere of Geoffrey Gibbs’ Tide Flowers with University of Rhode Island Artist Series and was featured in a number of solo recitals with Lake Charles Symphony, Salem Philharmonic, and in an invite-only VIP performance at Coushatta Casino Resort. Mr. VanNess has also delighted audiences for the past several seasons as featured soloist in Reagle Music Theatre’s Christmas Time program. The Sleepless Critic praised his “superb talent” and “gorgeous vocals” in a recent review. Other notable appearances include tenor soloist in Haydn’s Schöpfungsmesse with Concord Chorale, Handel’s Judas Maccabeus with Handel by Candlelight, and Handel’s Messiah with Tremont Baptist Church.
Mr. VanNess has developed and performed a one-man show, When I Think of Home…, showcasing some of his favorite music alongside his unique point of view as an artist. Mr. VanNess debuted When I Think of Home…, at McNeese State University in Lake Charles, Louisiana, following the success of his first show, Beethoven to Broadway at the Larcom Theatre in Beverly, Massachusetts.
In 2012 and 2013 Mr. VanNess was invited to be the guest soloist for the Robert F. Kennedy Children's Action Corps' Embracing the Legacy Awards at the John F. Kennedy Library. He has been involved in numerous other fundraising events with the Children Action Corps.
Mr. VanNess received his Graduate Performance Diploma from the Longy School of Music of Bard College, his Masters in Music from Louisiana State University and his Bachelors of Music from McNeese State University. He has been awarded the first-place prize for the North Shore Star presented by the North Shore Music Theatre and The Beverly Rotary Club. He is also a recipient of The Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana Career Grant. A native of Kinder, Louisiana, he currently resides in the Boston area.Visit fredvannesstenor.com