Brenden Gunnell



Known for his “wonderfully bright, powerful, clear and phonetically flawless tenor” (Leipziger Volkszeitung), Brenden Gunnell has fast established himself as a key player in the next generation of heldentenors.

Born in the USA, Brenden has been an ensemble member of Oper Leipzig since the 2022/2023 season. His upcoming roles with the company include Siegmund Die Walküre, Sergej Lady Macbeth von Mtsensk and the title role in Peter Grimes; a role he’ll also sing for Oper Köln. In the 2023/2024 season, his concert engagements include Das Paradies und die Peri with Symphoniker Hamburg/Sylvain Cambreling and Das Lied von der Erde with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra/Alpesh Chauhan. The upcoming season will see Brenden’s debut with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Boston Symphony Hall and Carnegie Hall, performing the role of Sergej in Shostakovich’s Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk under the baton of Andris Nelsons. The concert will be recorded for release on the Deutsche Grammophon label.

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“His hefty instrument is also capable of considerable subtlety and that was evident in his poetic account of the ‘Great Bear and Pleiades’ solo, and in the variety of timbres he brought to the Mad Scene, from a barely perceptible whisper to agonized cries of rage as he mimicked the chorus clamouring for rough justice. Leipzig, an ensemble company, is lucky to have him on a part-time contract.”

Hugh Canning

Opera Magazine

“New to the cast is tenor Brenden Gunnell, who is so strongly cast that he is chiefly the one who remains in the memory, causing the production of Wake-Walker to somewhat fade . After seeing Gunnell as the title character, it’s hard to imagine another tenor as Grimes. It’s as if Gunnell has captured a monopoly in our mind.”

Peter t'Hart

Opera Magazine