Brian Gilbertson's first public appearance was at age 10. He sang in children's operas including the role of the Captain in Benjamin Britain's The Golden Vanity. He fronted rock bands in his late teens to mid twenties, then in musicals and cabaret through his twenties.
Brian completed a Law degree in 1976 and practiced law for several years until he sold his legal practice in 1984 to move to Vienna to study voice and drama. He made his operatic debut in Vienna with the Vienna Kammeroper in 1985. For the next 20 years he performed in more than 40 lyric to character tenor roles as a principal artist in Europe, the United States, South Africa, Asia and Australia. He also performed in concert and produced several CD recordings.
His operatic roles have ranged from the lyrical Ernesto in Donizetti's Don Pasquale to creating characters like Goro in Madama Butterfly or Mime in Wagner's Ring Cycle (Siegried and Das Rheingold) and the lyrical coloratura of Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni . He has also enjoyed success in several toe-tapping Gilbert & Sullivan musicals in the lead tenor roles.
On the concert platform, he has performed in Handel's The Messiah, the Bach Passions and host of other productions.
Brian has appeared as a special guest artist at corporate functions and Gala evenings including Miss World and Miss Australia events across Australian and internationally.
In 2015 Brian resurrected his rock Band from the 1970's, Southern Keys to perform at the Adelaide Fringe Festival in a show celebrating South Australian rock bands of the 60's and 70's. It was a major success and was the first show in Fringe history to sell out its season 4 weeks before the Fringe opened. The show has sold out every year since and in record time and has also had sell out seasons at the Arkaba and Governor Hindmarsh Hotels.
Brian has worked with internationally renowned music directors, including:
Richard Armstrong, Richard Bonynge, Carlo Felice Cillario, Jaques Delacôte, John DeMain and Jeffrey Tate. He has also worked with renowned directors including Bruce Beresford, Michael Blakemore, Stuart Maunder, Keith Michell, Moffatt Oxenbould, Simon Phillips, Pierre Strosser, Gayle Edwards and Keith Warner.
Performance colleagues in opera include:
Elizabeth Campbell, Joan Carden, Conal Coad, Christopher Doig, Malcolm Donnelly, Dame Malvina Majors, Janis Martin, Yvonne Minton, Barry Mora, Patricia Payne, Marylin Schau, John Shaw, Lyndon Terracine, Yoko Watanabe, John Wegner and Lisa Gasteen.
In Musicals and lighter theatre works colleagues include: Jonathon Biggins, Rhonda Burchmore, Venetta Fields, Dobbs Franks, Keith Michell and Dennis Olsen.
Companies with whom Brian has collaborated:
Opera Australia, Opera Queensland, State Opera of South Australia, Victoria State Opera, St Pölten State Theatre; Vienna Kammeroper, Palm Beach Festival, Schönbrunn Palace Theatre Vienna, Australian Broadcasting Commission, Victorian Arts Centre, Adelaide Festival Centre Trust and Darwin Centre for Performing Arts.
Various concert venues in Europe and Australia as Tenor soloist.
Operatic Roles include:
Froh (Das Rheingold:The Ring), Mime (Siegfried: The Ring), Don Ottavio, (Don Giovanni); Ernesto, (Don Pasquale); Almaviva, (Il Barbiere di Sivilgia), L'Abate di Chazeuil, (Adriana Lecouvreur); Wenzel (Die Verkaufte Braut); Goro, (Madama Butterfly); Spoletta, (Tosca); Monostatos, (II flauto magico); Normanno, (Lucia di Lammermoor); Malcolm, (Macbeth); Gastone, (La Traviata); The Witch (Hansel & Gretel); Remendado, (Carmen); Roderigo, (Otello); Young Servant, (Elektra); Borsa, (Rigoletto); Sid, (Sid the Serpent); Don Curzio, (Figaro); Benoir, (La Boheme); Bardolph, (Falstaff); Tenor, (Trouble in Tahiti) Edmondo, (Manon Lescaut), Father (Dead Man Walking), The Prologue and Peter Quint (Turn of the Screw).
Performed in Afrikaans, Czech, English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Sotho, Singalese, Thai and Zulu.
Maestro Franz Schuch-Tovini, Vienna.
Dramatic Training: Hochschuele fuer Musik Darstellender Kunst in Vienna; South Australian Film Corporation.
© 2000 by Brian Gilbertson