“Orson Van Gay II was an ardent Alfredo…his sound was fluent and his
high notes golden.”
- Maria Nocking, Broadway World
Tenor Orson Van Gay II has been described as “…an ardent Alfredo…his sound was fluent and his high notes golden.” (Maria Nocking, Broadway World). A native of Southern California, Orson made his debut in the title role of Bernstein’s Candide at “A Noise Within” Theatre in 2018. Soon thereafter he was featured in the Cal Philharmonic Orchestra’s celebration of Leonard Bernstein’s 100th anniversary at Walt Disney Concert Hall. Critic George van Wagner commented that his performance was “beautifully sung and strongly acted…audience members were visibly moved.” That season also witnessed his debut with Center Stage Opera as Nemorino in L’elisir d’amore, a role he reprised for the Phoenicia Festival of the Voice (NY) in 2019.
LA Opera’s touring productions have been instrumental in launching this young tenor’s career, with performances including the title role in Orpheus, Bernard Curson (Cherubino) in Figaro 90210!, Ben in Todd Goodman’s Night of the Living Dead, and Dick Johnson in The Prospector . In addition he has been heard in the title role of Orlando in the nationally acclaimed production of Hopscotch. His sang his debut Alfredo (La Traviata) was with Pacific Opera Project. Orson premiered Golden; a composition based on the life of Polish composer, Igancy Paderewski by Nathan Wang, and the role of Prince in the world premiere of Ricky Ian Gordon’s Morning Star.
On the concert stage he has been heard with Pacific Symphony at the Segerstrom Concert Hall under the baton of maestro Carl St. Clair to a standing ovation. Orson has been sought after to perform in Mandarin, and in 2018 his debut with SINO U.S. Performing Arts Organization as tenor soloist for their concert series in Los Angeles and Phoenix, Arizona. At the First Baptist Church in Opelika In Alabama he was heard as tenor soloist in a 60-year commencement concert performance of Messiah.
Orson made his Carnegie Hall debut in January 2019, and in May 2019 his Long Beach Opera debut as Raymond Santana in the world premiere of The Central Park Five – a passionate opera by Anthony Davis that encompasses issues that still rock America today. Upcoming he will create the role of The Young Man in the premiere of Joe DiPietro’s, The Last Romance at The New Theater in Kansas City. . He also makes his debut as Rodolfo in La Boheme with Pacific Opera Projects in December in LA.
Committed to projects that showcase Opera at the community level; some of his projects include the Italian American of Los Angeles (IAMLA), Jimmy Kimmel’s annual Italian Festival in Hollywood, and the Voices of Hope Benefit Concert, to name a few.
Orson Van Gay II holds a Bachelor of Science in Vocal Performance from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, and has twice been awarded both State and Regional Prizes in the Mid-Atlantic NATS competition. Devoted to the art song repertoire, a classical arts publication out of Virginia - - Artsongupdate - - described Orson's voice as: "there is a liquid silver tone in his lyric tenor voice and confident clarity of text"... "There is a compelling urgency in his tone that wins the listener's heart."..."Top notes were perfect and the vulnerability and beauty throughout caught us in the thrall of anticipated greatness for this young vocalist as he builds a career."
Orson is also an actor in several nationally recognized television series. He has been featured in major television commercials and starred on a variety of shows for Netflix; including foreign film and television. For his latest upcoming engagements, please visit www.orsonvangay.com