"Perhaps the conundrum is this – why does the most unnatural of singing voices sound so natural? Years of intense and strenuous training have brought Chan to the point where his voice sounds remarkably pure and his vocal delivery looks completely effortless." (The Straits Times, Singapore)
Singaporean countertenor, Chan Wei En, performs internationally and highlights include the title role in Handel’s Oreste with Singapore International Festival of Art, numerous Bach cantatas with Bachfest Malaysia, directed by David Chin, Bernstein's Chichester Psalms with the NEC Philharmonia and Concert Choir, directed by Hugh Wolff, and alto solos in B Minor Mass with the American Bach Soloists and Bachfest Malaysia. Wei En has been a winner and finalist at numerous international vocal competitions in the US and was awarded the Ernst Bacon Prize for “Outstanding Performance of an American Song” at the 38th Annual Competition for Singers, organised by Civic Morning Musicals.
Wei En’s repertoire includes Bach’s St. John Passion, St. Matthew Passion, and Magnificat, Handel’s Dixit Dominus and Messiah, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Haydn's Mass in Time of War and Nelson Mass, Vivaldi’s Dixit Dominus. He has appeared in leading operatic roles such as Oreste in Handel’s Oreste, Doodle in Stephan Weisman’s The Scarlet Ibis, and Ramiro in Mozart’s La Finta Giardiniera.
Wei En enjoys the challenge of both standard repertoire and contemporary premieres. He has premiered many works composed by his peers and recently performed Ligeti’s virtuosic Nouvelle Aventures in Boston with NEC Contemporary Ensemble and the Callithumpian Consort, conducted by Efstratios Minakakis. He sang the successful Boston premiere of Stefan Weisman’s The Scarlet Ibis with Boston Opera Collaborative, and was involved in the workshop premiere of Pulitzer Prize winner, Cerise Jacob’s videogame opera, Permadeath.
Wei En has performed with Carduus, Canto Armonico, Cayuga Chamber Orchestra, Music at First Lutheran Church of Boston, Association of Toronto Chinese Evangelical Church Musicians, Henry Purcell Society of Boston, Hong Kong Bach Festival, MIT Concert Choir, Opera Ithaca, and the Rhode Island Civic Chorale & Orchestra.
Wei En holds a M.M. in Voice Performance from New England Conservatory, where he studied with Dr. Ian Howell, and a B.M. in Voice Performance from Ithaca College, where he studied with Professor Carol McAmis. In Singapore, Wei En studied with Toh Ban Sheng.
An avid recitalist, Wei En enjoys premiering works of living composers and breaking repertoire stereotypes for countertenors. He enjoyed the company of a full house at his 2016 recital at The Arts House in Singapore and hopes to bring another recital back home soon!
Wei En's love for music began in choirs. He was a member of Hallelujah Oratorio Society, directed by Rev. Lee Chong Min, and sang with the Amoris Singers, directed by Toh Ban Sheng.
Follow Wei En on facebook @ChanWeiEnCountertenor and Instagram@weiencountertenor