Dr Bretton Brown

Key details:

Keyboard | Vocal Studies
Collaborative Piano (Keyboard); Vocal Coach and Aria, Song & Oratorio (Vocal Studies)
Bretton Brown
Photo by Arthur Moeller


Japanese American pianist Bretton Brown enjoys a diverse career as song accompanist, chamber musician, and coach. He made his European debut at Wigmore Hall in 2016, where he played for Renée Fleming. He has also performed with Julia Bullock and Mark Padmore, as well as rising young artists throughout Europe and the United States. In 2021/22, he tours as a guest member of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, performing at the BBC Proms and the Hamburg Elbphilharmonie, and accompanies Ms. Bullock at Wigmore Hall and the Aix-en-Provence Festival.

He has been répétiteur/coach for world premieres at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (Sir George Benjamin's Lessons in Love and Violence), the Dutch National Opera (Caruso a Cuba), and le Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord in Paris (Zauberland). He also assisted in the preparation of André Previn's final piece, Penelope, written for Ms. Fleming and first performed at the Tanglewood Music Festival. At Tanglewood in 2013, Brown worked with George Benjamin for the first time on the American premiere of Written on Skin; he later served as répétiteur for the Canadian premiere of that work at the composer's request. His collaboration with Benjamin now includes not only Written on Skin and the world premiere of Lessons in Love and Violence, but also productions of the latter work with Dutch National Opera, Opéra national de Lyon, and beyond.

He has prepared singers for principal roles at the Metropolitan Opera, the Royal Opera House, the Wiener Staatsoper, the Salzburg Festival, and the Glyndebourne Festival, and for concert performances at the Venice Biennale and the Proms.

Committed to the development of younger artists, he has held multiple residencies at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, was visiting professor of collaborative piano at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in the United States, and is on the faculty of the Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London, where he teaches singers and accompanists.

Raised in Kentucky, he was educated at Yale, the New England Conservatory, and Juilliard. He won prizes for poetry and music at Yale and received Juilliard's Richard F. French Doctoral Prize for his dissertation on the life and music of Gustav Holst.