Brian Stokes Mitchell
Singer and Actor
“…the last leading man…”
—The New York Times
Tony Award-winner Brian Stokes Mitchell has enjoyed a career that spans Broadway, television, film, and concert appearances with the country’s finest conductors and orchestras. He received Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle awards for his star turn in Kiss Me, Kate. He also gave Tony-nominated performances in Man of La Mancha and August Wilson’s King Hedley II and Ragtime. Other notable Broadway shows include Kiss of the Spider Woman, Jelly’s Last Jam, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, and Shuffle Along. In 2016 he was awarded his second Tony Award, the prestigious Isabelle Stevenson Tony for his Charitable work with The Actors Fund. That same year Mr. Stokes was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame.
An extremely versatile and in-demand singer, Mr. Stokes has performed at venues spanning jazz, opera, pops, country, and musical theater worlds. He has worked with John Williams, Marvin Hamlisch, Gustavo Dudamel, Keith Lockhart, Michael Tilson Thomas, The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Big Band, The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square, and the Muppets. Mr. Stokes has made multiple appearances at Carnegie Hall, beginning with his debut with the San Francisco Symphony through his televised performance in South Pacific opposite Reba McEntire, to his sold-out solo concert, which he continues to perform throughout the United States. He has been invited twice to perform at the White House (both times aired on PBS’s Great Performances) and has performed multiple times for Presidents Clinton and Obama.
Mr. Stokes has delved deeply into various music disciplines. In addition to singing, he began piano studies at the age of 6. A self-professed autodidact, his musical curiosity led him to teach himself composing, arranging and orchestration, starting in his teens. He later studied film scoring, orchestration, and conducting, both privately and through UCLA, and subsequently scored and conducted a number of Trapper John, MD episodes, a series on which he was also a regular cast member. His musical talent has extended to the present day as producer, arranger, and orchestrator on his three solo albums, including his last recording, Simply Broadway, and his upcoming recording, Plays With Music, which is slated to be released this Fall. Mr. Stokes has appeared on more than 20 albums.
His extensive screen credits began with a guest-starring role on Roots: The Next Generations, followed by a 7-year stint on Trapper John, MD, and have continued with memorable appearances on everything from PBS’ Great Performances to The Fresh Prince, Frasier, Glee, Jumping the Broom, and his most recent recurring roles on Madam Secretary, Mr. Robot, The Path, Billions, and The Good Fight. Other recent TV appearances include The Blacklist, Elementary, and Bull. As a voice-over artist, he has played dozens of characters on animated TV episodes, including performing Through Heaven’s Eyes in Dreamwork’s The Prince of Egypt.
As a writer, Mr. Stokes has contributed to the book Hirschfeld’s Harlem, wrote the preface to At This Theatre, and co-authored the children’s book Lights on Broadway.
For fun, he has been known to fly planes and jump out of them (usually not at the same time), and he can ride a bicycle on a high wire.
Mr. Stokes has enjoyed working with numerous charitable organizations, from the March of Dimes to the USO. He is on the board of Americans For the Arts and is serving his 14th term as Chairman of the Board of the Actors Fund.