A former professional poker player and organist, Canadian tenor Edward Atkinson has found his home as an interpreter of a wide variety of styles and genres. His most recent operatic roles include turns as George Bailey in It’s A Wonderful Life, Bob Boles in Peter Grimes, Father Grenville in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking, Rodolfo in La Bohème, Ruggero in La Rondine, Prince Kodanda in Menotti’s The Last Savage, L’amante in Menotti’s Amelia al ballo, Tamino in Die Zauberflöte, and Belmonte in Die Entführung aus dem Serail.
In the orchestral arena, Edward was heard last season with the Carmel Symphony Orchestra as the tenor soloist for Verdi’s Requiem, alongside Jane Dutton and Timothy Noble. His latest events have included performances as the tenor soloist for Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle, Mozart’s Requiem Mass, Handel’s Messiah, Britten’s Canticle II: Abraham & Isaac, Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn, & Strings, and Debussy’s Trois chansons de Charles d’Orleans. In the last year, Edward was awarded First Place and Grand Prize from the Matinee Musicale Competition and the Donald Felton Memorial Award from the National Society of Arts and Letters.
In addition to his operatic and concert engagements, Edward serves as Director of Sacred Music at Christ the King Church in Portland, OR. Recently, he served simultaneously as the Director of Sacred Music at Annunciation Church, Director of Sacred Music at St. Paul the Apostle Church, and as the Music Director of the Saint Ambrose Schola Cantorum.
Edward completed his Master’s and Performer’s Diploma in Vocal Performance from the Indiana University Jacobs School, in the studio of Patricia Havranek. Prior to his work at Indiana, Edward completed his Bachelor of Music in Organ Performance at the Townsend School of Music under the direction of the late Dr. Robert Parris.
When not making music, Edward loves to cook with his family and enjoy the paradisal Pacific Northwest.
I have very limited vacancies in my private studio for 2020. Message me through my Facebook page
to request a meeting, if you are interested in studying. (I currently am not accepting any organ students.)
M.M. in Vocal Performance, Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University
P.D. in Vocal Performance, Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University
B.M. in Organ Performance, Townsend School of Music at Mercer University
15 years of teaching experience
15 operatic roles
50+ classical concerts
25+ pop concerts
First Place & Grand Prize for the Indiana Matinee Musicale Competition, 2016 (+17 other awards since 2007)
Donald Felton Memorial Award from the National Society of Arts and Letters Voice Competition, 2016
Fellowship & Artistic Excellence Award at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, 2013 – 2017
Associate Instructor at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, 2017Testimonials
Travis JeffordsMusic Director, Student, Bloomington, IN
“In the 25 years that I’ve taken private lessons as a student, graduate student, and eventually professional musician, I’ve never met anyone who has helped me grow in such a brief amount of time as Edward. Edward is not only an incredible singer, but an incredibly knowledgeable and aware singer, with a great voice, but an even greater understanding of the craft and technique of singing and performing well. His commitment to lead through inspiration instead of through demands, guilt, and shame makes every lesson a joy, and I leave each lesson feeling the best I feel all week. He has helped me discover my voice, and to discover myself in the process.”
Hugo VeraPrincipal Artist, The Metropolitan Opera, & Artistic Director, Lawrence Opera Works
“I have had the pleasure to work with Edward as Artistic Director with Lawrence Opera Works in the summer of 2012. I can say that it was refreshing to work with an individual that came with so much enthusiasm and eager to work. Not only does he have a passion for the art form, but is also able to motivate others to feel this passion and can conduct others in any scale of musical work.”
Ian RabensteineStudent, Bloomington, IN
“Edward does an excellent job of creating a friendly, intimidation free environment. As a beginner, I was very grateful for his patience and attention to detail. His extensive experience and knowledge of multiple teaching methods was vital in helping me through the common sticking points of a beginning singer. Whether you are a beginner like me or more advanced vocalist, Edward will get you to the next level.”
Ashley StoneMezzo Soprano, Private Voice Instructor, Bloomington, IN
“Edward Atkinson creates an energized and positive environment in the voice studio. I have observed his work in both a choral and private studio setting, and his focus on a strong techincal foundation has lead to healthier, more efficient tone production in both settings. He is a joy to work with as a teacher, conductor, and musician.”
Brandon PaffordPiano Instructor, Houston’s First School of Fine Arts
“Edward is a loyal, passionate, and wonderful musician. With his organist and current vocalist experience, his musicianship is well-rounded. Edward’s humor and personable character gives way to a comfortable and productive environment in which to create music.”
Rebecca PennyWesley Choir Director Hiring Committee, First United Methodist Church
Edward is very positive and encouraging with the choir. He uses creative methods – tailored directly to our group – to help us improve both individually and as a whole. Edward is a delight to work with, caring deeply about each choir member and fostering a welcoming sense of community.”
Allison (Allie) McGowHuman Resources & Program Admin, First United Methodist Church Bloomington
Edward is a man of many talents. I have been working with him for almost a year and his commitment is undeniable. His patience and encouragement to the choir is evident at each rehearsal and service. He is very welcoming to all who seek an interest in singing. We are lucky to have Edward has a part of our community.”
Jane Frances AbelMusic Teacher, Elementary School
What truly sets him apart from others with similar qualifications is his very genuine and optimistic demeanor.”
Oliver J. BookerChief Executive Officer, Monroe County Hospital
Working with Edward since 2006, I have found him to be an inventive, creative, out-of-the-box thinker. Edward is imbued with a servant’s heart. His sense of humor and flexible nature makes him supremely easy to work with. It has been a true lifetime pleasure to work with Edward.”