American tenor Christopher Pfund has performed to critical acclaim with countless major orchestras and oratorio festivals throughout North America including the Cleveland Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Houston Symphony, the Detroit Symphony, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, the New York Oratorio Society, and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s. International engagements have included performances in the Czech Republic, Germany, Canada, Mexico, Costa Rica, and Brazil. Critics have praised his “rounded vocal beauty” and The New York Times called his voice an “attractive tenor [that] helps define a sympathetic character.”
Universally recognized for his irreverent portrayals of the roasting swan in Orff’s Carmina Burana, Pfund has made the role a pillar of his career with over 150 performances on three continents. His wide repertoire includes not only the standard Baroque masterpieces such as Bach’s Mass in B minor and Handel’s Messiah but also much of the 20th century canon of concert repertoire including Britten’s War Requiem and the Klaus-Narr from Schoenberg’s Gurre-Lieder.
In addition to his oratorio work with orchestra, Pfund has also enjoyed success on the opera stage, including engagements with Glimmerglass Opera, New York City Opera, Florentine Opera, Santa Fe Opera, and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s. A consummate recitalist, Pfund regularly presents performances of the song cycles of Schubert, Schumann, Britten, and Brahms as well as other celebrated composers of the classical song literature. Recordings include the title role in Britten’s Albert Herring on the Vox label, Distant Playing Fields: Vocal Music of Amy Beach and William Mayer on Newport Classics, and Carmina Burana with Fabio Mechetti and the Jacksonville Symphony.
An impassioned performer of contemporary music, Pfund is a frequent collaborator in revivals of 20th Century works and the creation of new works. Highlights of these performances include the role of Richard in the New York City premiere of Ernst Krenek’s Vertrauenssache with Elysium between Two Continents, Sir Gower Lackland in the revival of Howard Hanson’s Merry Mount at Carnegie Hall’s Spring for Music Festival with the Rochester Philharmonic, and the creation of Rev. Eugene Hendrix in the world-premiere production of Gregory Vajda’s opera Georgia Bottoms with the Huntsville Symphony Orchestra.
In September of 2019, Pfund was awarded the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from The City University of New York Graduate Center. His dissertation, “Johann Nauwach’s Teütscher Villanellen; A Critical Performance Edition with Performance Practice Commentary,” was published by ProQuest in 2019. Pfund’s current research interests include early seventeenth-century song and performance practice as well as historic German diction.
Mr. Pfund holds degrees from the University of Northern Colorado, Manhattan School of Music, and The City University of New York Graduate Center. In addition, he was a 20th Century song recitalist at the Banff Centre in Banff, Canada. Awards include the Richard F. Gold Career Grant from the Shoshana Foundation. Pfund is currently Associate Professor of Music at the University of Florida teaching voice and serving as voice area coordinator. Before joining UF, he was an Associate Professor of Voice and Opera the University of Idaho. He has also taught at both Hartwick and Manhattanville Colleges.