About Anthony Kearns
Anthony Kearns, acknowledged as "Ireland's Finest Tenor" at the Dublin National Concert Hall's Silver Jubilee in 2006, performs an extraordinary repertoire, with music from Ireland to Broadway, to Viennese romance to Italian Classics, French art songs, and traditional German Lieder, the inspirational to the spiritual, and from operetta's light comedy to the sweeping drama of grand opera.
With his rich lyrical tenor voice, flawless technique, and skillful interpretation of these many and varied musical genres, Anthony Kearns is recognized as one of the world’s foremost tenors, receiving rave reviews, performance after performance. His ground-breaking debut in Grand Opera in January 2011 as the lead tenor role in Lucia di Lammermoor with Opera Naples [FL] was hailed by critics as masterful. Said Steffanie Pearce, general/artistic director of Opera Naples [FL] in a recent media interview: “It’s a voice-of-the-century voice.”
Thrust upon the world scene at the first 1999 U.S. PBS broadcast of the 1998 taping of “The Irish Tenors in Dublin”, Anthony Kearns and his two colleagues achieved instant stardom. As they began performing on the world's most prestigious stages, The Irish Tenors became a world-wide sensation as Ireland's most famous touring musicians, second only to the rock band, U2. Kearns, the group's only remaining original member, has sung with the trio for over a decade, with 10 audio CDs to their credit, always listed on Billboard's Top Ten upon release.
Anthony Kearns is increasingly in demand as a solo performer world-wide. He performs concerts with piano accompaniment in a recital format, as a guest soloist with some of the world's finest symphony orchestras, and on opera stages in Europe and America.
Music has always been a part of his life, since he made his debut into the world on August 17, 1971 in Kiltealy, County Wexford. From a very early age, Kearns began mastering Irish music's traditional instruments, and at the age of 10, he specialized in the beautiful, trilling Sean Nós (Old style, unaccompanied) singing of his homeland, competing in and winning various All-Ireland singing competitions.
The turning point in Kearns' career was in 1993. While working in sales in Dun Laoghaire, Kearns heard of a contest: “Ireland's Search for a Tenor” in conjunction with The Bank of Ireland's release of a new 10-pound note, commonly called a tenner. He sang “Danny Boy” over the telephone, hitchhiked to Dublin for the finals, and won the competition singing “The Impossible Dream” and “Danny Boy” as an encore. Kearns was the only untrained singer competing.
After winning the talent competition, Kearns studied for three years with Ireland's renowned voice teacher, Veronica Dunne, at the Leinster School of Music. He was attending The College of Music in Wales, when he received the call from The Irish Tenors. Kearns has appeared with this Irish trio since its very beginning in 1998.
In 2006, Kearns was invited to record and perform with the most celebrated artists in Ireland at the Dublin National Concert Hall's Silver Jubilee, where the finest entertainers in Ireland shared the stage. At that event, he was billed as “Ireland's Finest Tenor.” Kearns has sung at the Gaiety Theatre (Dublin); performed with the Dublin National Symphony Orchestra; and often sang at major performances held at the National Concert Hall in Dublin and the University Concert Hall in Limerick.
He has also been guest soloist for both the Boston Pops and the Chicagoland Pops. When touring with The Irish Tenors, Kearns performs in many of the most prestigious venues in America, among them: Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall,Madison Square Garden, Boston's Fleet Pavilion, The Hollywood Bowl, on the grounds of the Capitol on the Fourth of July, and for the funeral of President Ronald W. Reagan.
Anthony Kearns has won several prizes as an adult, including the Dermot Troy Trophy for oratorio in 1995 and 1996, the Best Male Singer at the 1995 Waterford International Festival of Light Opera, and the ESB Veronica Dunne International Singing Competition in 1999. In 2010, he was recognized as Best Irish Tenor (individual) by the Irish Music Association.
Anthony Kearns has a busy solo career, touring several times each year in both Ireland and the U.S., as well as at least twice annually with The Irish Tenors.
Mr. Kearns celebrated the 10th anniversary of his U.S. solo career in April 2010 at Mechanics Hall in Worcester, MA (a venue made famous by the legendary Irish Tenor, John "Count" McCormack), and where Kearns launched his solo career to much acclaim. Kearns took the stage by storm, receiving accolades from American critics as perhaps the best equipped of the three (Irish Tenors) to "achieve the level of tenor superstardom now enjoyed by Pavarotti and a handful of other singers."
With eleven CDs to his credit, Anthony Kearns has performed on the world's most prestigious stages. Last year, Kearns’ solo projects took him to Prague to tape a new PBS television special, "Hallelujah Broadway" and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, among other concert venues. He also performed at the prestigious Capitol Hill Club in Washington D.C. (twice), and at the inauguration of Virginia's Governor-Elect Bob McDonnell in January of 2010. Kearns performed at a USO/ Thanks USA benefit at the New Zealand Embassy; a peace awards ceremony honoring the former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and former U.S. President Bill Clinton; and on the American Fox News Network’s popular show, ′Huckabee′.
Recently, Mr. Kearns teamed up with Governor McDonnell to headline a charity reception for ThanksUSA to benefit U.S. military families with college scholarsips. Last year, Mr. Kearns lent his stunning tenor voice to the National Memorial Day Choral Festival dedicated to America's military troops at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington , D.C. He also sang "Amazing Grace" a cappella at the National Moment of Remembrance during the National Memorial Day Parade before 300,000 people, and during the parade's pre-program for V.I.P. guests in the nation's capital city.
When Anthony Kearns sang The Lord's Prayer and Danny Boy on Fox News Network, it was said that Mr. Kearns "generated the most positive response of any musical guest on the [Huckabee] show to date." Anthony Kearns' rendition of Amazing Grace at the Moment of Remembrance received a similar overwhelming response.
Operatic Roles: U.S. Debut in Grand Opera
Anthony Kearns launches his U.S. operatic career as the lead tenor role of "Edgardo" in the Lucia di Lammermoor becoming one of only a handful of renowned Irish tenors to enter the arena of Grand Opera. Kearns debuted in the challenging role previously reprised by world renowned tenors such as Jose Carreras and Luciano Pavarotti. In June, he will perform at the Lismore Music Festival in Ireland as the lead tenor in Mozart’s Don Giovanni.
Mr. Kearns has come on strong since he made his stunning U.S. operatic debut as Romeo for Naples [FL] Opera company's production Romeo & Juliet: Then and Now. In June 2010, he delivered what critics called a "top notch" performance as "Don Jose" in Carmen, the French opera by Georges Bizet, with the cast of Glasthule Opera at Pavilion Theatre, in Dun Laoghaire, Ireland . Other roles he has mastered include Fenton in Falstaff (in Italy), Rinuccio in Gianni Schicci, and the lead tenor in Gounod's Faust, which was nominated for best production in The Irish Times Theatre Awards.