Chelsea Lehnea

| soprano

Email Icon
Simple Youtube Icon
tiktok icon



American soprano Chelsea Lehnea is known for her powerful artistry, fearless personality, and unique sense of style. Critics have praised ​her “mercurial colored, highly responsive instrument that flew seamlessly through its registers” (The NY Times), “Her use of chest voice ​gave Paolina a powerful punch” (Operawire), “The soprano is a no-holds-barred singing actress” (Seen and Heard International), and her ​“ferociously brilliant vocal and dramatic ability that more than matched her eye-catching physicality” (Vero News).

In the summer of 2024, she will star as the title role in Carolina Uccelli’s Anna di Resburgo with Teatro Nuovo. Uccelli was the lone ​female opera composer who made it to the stage in the era of bel canto composition. This opera’s long-overdue revival (the first since its ​premiere run) comes courtesy of Will Crutchfield, the indefatigable American conductor, musicologist and educator who in 2018 founded ​the New York-based Teatro Nuovo. He says of her work “even though she is working within the familiar forms and styles of the period, her ​music does not sound like any of the (prior) composers. It sounds like her. That is more than enough reason to want her voice heard again ​after two centuries of obscurity, and to welcome a stirring opera, not quite like any other, to the Bel Canto canon.” This modern premiere ​of Uccelli’s romantic Scottish thriller will be July 20th at 7:30pm at the Alexander Kasser Theater and July 24th at 7:30pm at the Rose ​Theater, Jazz at Lincoln Center.

Lehnea has secured top honors around the globe, claiming First Place at the Loren L. Zachary Vocal Competition, Premiere Opera Foundation Live ​Vocal Competition, Opera at Florham Vocal Competition, and the Camille Coloratura Awards Vocal Competition. Her achievements include a ​Sullivan Foundation Award and achieving finalist status at the XVII Concurso Internacional Montserrat Caballè where critics noted “En el buen nivel ​de todos los participantes, destacó Chelsea Lehnea, soprano norteamericana que se atrevió con una obra infrecuente hoy en día, llena de ​dificultades para el cantante. [In the good level of all the participants, Chelsea Lehnea stood out, an American soprano who dared with an uncommon ​work nowadays, full of difficulties for the singer.]” (Òpera Actual)

In the 2023-2024 season, she triumphed in the role of Liù in Turandot and the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor at St Pete Opera as well as appear as ​a soloist for Vero Beach Opera’s Best of Broadway & Opera in Concert. Last season, Lehnea made her highly anticipated New York City debut as ​Paolina in Poliuto with Teatro Nuovo. She made her debut with her hometown opera company, the Chattanooga Symphony and Orchestra, as a ​soloist for their Opera Extravaganza conducted by Pierre Vallet. She was a featured soloist for the Year End Gala of the Dream Orchestra of Los ​Angeles conducted by Daniel Suk and took Second Place at the Rising Stars Competition at Vero Beach Opera. In the 2021-2022 season, she ​debuted with Pacific Opera Project as Clorinda in La Cenerentola and performed as a featured soloist at the Northside Methodist Church of Atlanta ​captivating audiences in Handel’s Messiah and Mendelssohn’s Hymn of Praise. Notably, she received critical acclaim for her “excellent, sweet voiced ​Pamina” (The Berkeley Daily Planet) in Die Zauberflöte with the Merola Opera Program. In the 2019-2020 season, she performed the role of Gilda in ​Rigoletto with Bel Cantanti Opera followed by notable performances as Musetta in La bohème with Gulfshore Opera.

Lehnea’s ascent in the opera world began with her participation in the Santa Fe Opera’s Apprentice Singer Program in 2016, which paved the way for ​her Washington National Opera debut as Sister Catherine in Dead Man Walking. Noteworthy milestones include her Masterclass performance of the ​mad scene of Lucia di Lammermoor under the auspices of the Metropolitan Opera Guild, her performances with St. Pete Opera as Donna Anna in ​Don Giovanni, being the soprano soloist for Der Messias with the Virginia Consort Choir and Orchestra, and debuting as Euridice in Orfeo ed Euridice ​with Bel Cantanti Opera. Her association with the Merola Opera Program in 2019 added another dimension to her journey. Here she took part in the ​world premiere of Jake Heggie’s If I Were You as Woman at the Bar, while also presenting scenes as the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor and as ​Elisabetta in Maria Stuarda.

Originally from Chattanooga, Tennessee, she imparts her passion and expertise by teaching voice and piano lessons online. Sign up below to secure ​your spot in the Lehnea studio. Beyond the stage, she finds solace in nature, experiments with vegan culinary arts, and finds joy in the cuddles of her ​cat, Shiley.


Anna di resburgo

July 20, 2024 at 7:30pm

Alexander Kasser Theater

July 24, 2024 at 7:30pm

Jazz at Lincoln Center

Teatro Nuovo


August 16th, 2024 at 7:30pm

Walt Disney Concert Hall

Dream Orchestra of Los Angeles

Chelsea Lehnea in concert

October 20th, 2024 at 7pm

Morningside Presbyterian Church

Nancy Frampton Rising Artists Series


Jan. 14, 2025 at 7:30pm

New World Center: Fort Lauderdale

Jan. 16, 2025 at 7:30pm

Broward Center for the Performing Arts: Miami

Jan. 19,2025 at 7:30pm

Tennessee Williams Theatre: Key West

South Florida Symphony Orchestra

A ​born opera composer

Read about Carolina Uccelli (1810-58), whose ​opera Anna di Resburgo will be given its

first modern performances by

New York’s Teatro Nuovo with

Chelsea Lehnea in the title role.

Meet St. Pete Opera’s

Lucia di Lammermoor

Check out her recent interview ​with Bill DeYoung of

The St Pete Catalyst

A pale orange, toga-like dress and ​sparkling wrist jewelry added visual ​excitement to Chelsea Lehnea’s ​performance and was equal to the ​radiance of her singing. The soprano ​is a no-holds-barred singing actress, ​whose dramatic involvement is ​evident in every note that she offers ​and every movement she makes.

- Seen and Heard International

Black Fancy Line Art Text Divider
black vertical line
black vertical line


Black Fancy Line Art Text Divider

Parent Testimonial:

Chelsea is the best teacher in the world. She brings so much joy to our home; we look forward to her arrival every week. She inspires Elisabeth without intimidating her.

- Katy Beach, Nov. 2019

Study with Chelsea

Black Fancy Line Art Text Divider

I bring nine years of experience teaching piano and voice lessons to students of all ages

both in person and online.

My teaching method focuses on learning the basics so that together we can discover your authentic sound.