The American operatic tenor, Ben Gulley, has been hailed "as an outstanding tenor (Opera News) ... startlingly-gifted (San Francisco Classical Voice)." Mr. Gulley's career is burgeoning with lead and feature roles in opera, sole engagements, concert work, film work, nationwide touring, and prestigious appearances abroad. Mr. Gulley is the 2009 winner of the Metropolitan Opera's National Council District & Regional Competitions and a National Semi-Finalist. Other awards include the winner of the Hellam Young Artists' Competition, Richard Tucker Foundation finalist, Florida Grand Opera competition finalist, Silver Medalist and People's Choice Award from the Tulsa Rotary Club's Competition, and a finalist for the Palm Beach Opera Competition; as well as awards from the Gerda Lissner Foundation and Shreveport Opera's Singer of the Year including the Audience Favorite Award and Encouragement Award.
The 2014-15 season began with MTH's rave-reviewed Bernstein's Broadway, role debut as Ernee in Les Troyens under the baton of Maestro Kent Nagano in San Francisco, role debut as Radames in Aidawith Opera San Luis Obispo and the start of Mr. Gulley's first solo national recital tour presented by Allied Concert Services. The 2011-14 seasons saw Mr. Gulley on the stages of Chautauqua Opera as Edmondo in Manon Lescaut and Edgardo (cover) in Lucia di Lammermoor, Opera San Luis Obispo role debut as Tamino, debut in I Puratani as Arturo with Minnesota Concert Opera, Cedar Rapids Opera as the fourth Jew in Salome (his first HD Broadcast), Borsa in the Lyric Opera of Kansas City's Rigoletto and as The Peasent in La fille du Regiment. Previous stage work includes UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance as the title role in Britten's Albert Herring and Nemorino in L'elisir d'amore, Kansas Concert Opera as Turridu in Cavalleria Rusticana and Lt. Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly. Coming from, and equally at home in musical theater, his proudest musical theater moment was as Stromboli (taking the role over from Brent Spiner) in the world premiere of the TV movie adaptation of the Broadway musical Gepetto & Son with the Coterie Theater with Stephen Schwartz and David Stern.
Commercially Mr. Gulley is currently one half of the operatic tenor duo Gulley/Granner with fellow tenor Nathan Granner. 2014 saw the release of their first independent record release of Benchmark Tenor Arias with new arrangements for piano quartet. Mr. Gulley was a member of the SONY/BMG Masterworks recording group The American Tenors 2010-14 and the 2011-12 National Tour through LiveOnStage. He has been twice featured on the PBS nationally televised Memorial Day event "Celebration at the Station" with the KC Symphony under the baton of Maestro Michael Stern. Plus, numerous crossover concerts and events with mainstream artists and entertainers such as David Foster, Natalie Cole, Brenna Whitaker, Blues Traveler, SNL alumni Darryl Hammond, Mark O'Conner, Cherry Holmes, JoJo, Stephen Schwartz, Jason Robert Brown, Jesse Lynch and others.
Mr. Gulley is a graduate of the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance, where he is also a sitting member of the Alumni Board. Other training has included the apprenticeships with the Lyric Opera of Kansas City 2009-11, the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival singing as Jason in A Grand Night for Singing, as Ludwig in the World Premiere of the opera Nocciolina, and Opera in the Ozarks as Lt. B.F. Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly and Sam Polk in Susannah.
in 2011 Mr. Gulley had the privilege of being the first artist to sing on the stage of the incomparable Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts with Maestro Ward Holmquist at the piano in his hometown of Kansas City, MO.