Tenor Michael Sells enjoyed a 30-year performance career specializing in the music of J.S. Bach (over 100 performances as the Evangelist in Bach’s Passions), Handel, and 20thCentury composers, especially the vocal works of British composer Benjamin Britten. Conductors with whom he has been privileged to work include: Zubin Mehta, Sir Andrew Davis, James Levine, Carlo Maria Giulini, Robert Shaw, Michael Tilson Thomas and Helmut Rilling. Sells has recorded Britten’s War Requiem, Cantata Academica, Curlew River (PBS taping), Seven Sonnets of Michelangelo, Canticle I, and Sechs Hölderlin-Fragmente. He is also featured as Dr. Caius on Maestro Giulini’s historic recording of Verdi’s Falstaff.
As an academic, Dr. Michael Sells has taught voice andrelated literatures (song, opera, cantata and oratorio), arts appreciation, and musical theatre history. His voice students have appeared on the stages of the Metropolitan Opera, Chicago Lyric Opera, English National Opera, Royal Opera (Covent Garden), and with many European opera companies. Current research interests include the operas of Benjamin Britten and the musicals of Stephen Sondheim. Articles and reviews have appeared in the NATS Journal, Opera Quarterly, The International Dictionary of Opera, and The Sondheim Review.
After 40 years of university-level teaching andadministration, Dr. Sells retired from Butler University in 2009, where he is now Dean and Professor of Music Emeritus. He continues to teach there on an adjunct basis.