A highly energetic, vibrant, and extremely versatile singer and actor, tenor Joseph Gaines has been described as "such an exuberant performer you couldn't help but smile" (The Minneapolis Star-Tribune). In 2017 he created the role of Dan Leno in Opera Philadelphia’s world premiere of ELIZABETH CREE, by the Pulitzer Prize-winning duo of Kevin Puts and Mark Campbell; Opera News wrote that the role “offered a field day to light tenor Joseph Gaines, who met the challenge with vocal skill and superb physicality.” For that performance he was named Best Supporting Actor in the 2017 Philadelphia Theater Critics Awards.
Gaines has also been seen regularly on the stages of Pittsburgh Opera, Utah Opera, Central City Opera, Resonance Works Pittsburgh, Opera Colorado, and others. He joined the artist roster of The Metropolitan Opera for the first time in the 2013-14 season, covering Dr. Caius in Robert Carsen’s acclaimed production of FALSTAFF. Recent company debuts have included San Diego Opera, Virginia Opera, and Hawaii Opera Theatre.
He has been a featured concert soloist with The Philadelphia Orchestra, The Detroit Symphony, The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, The Charlotte Symphony, and many others. Gaines’ commercial recordings include “Messiah: The Mozart Orchestrations” (St. Thomas Church Fifth Avenue, John Scott, director), Domenico Scarlatti’s “La Dirindina” (Ars Lyrica Houston, Matthew Dirst, director), and most recently with pianist Laura Ward and others on “Daron Hagen: 21st-Century Song Cycles” by Philadelphia’s Lyric Fest (about which Opera News wrote that Gaines and soprano Justine Aronson “have the flexible, immediately engaging quality of the best cabaret singers”).
Engagements in 2019 and beyond include returns to Utah Opera, Hawaii Opera Theatre, Resonance Works, Central City Opera, and others.