Danish bass Nicolai Elsberg (b. 1989) holds a Bachelor in contemporary music from The Rhythmic Music Conservatory in Copenhagen (2014). Back then he was lead singer of the critically acclaimed Danish band, Spillemændene, and collaborated and toured with the world-famous indie-group, Efterklang. With the feeling that the microphone was limiting his voice, Elsberg moved from rhythmic music into the world of classical singing and opera. From 2016 he studied classical singing at The Royal Danish Academy of Music with the renowned Susanna Eken as voice teacher.
Among his future engagements are “Sarastro” at Opéra National du Rhin, Royal Opera Copenhagen, Teatro Nacional de Sao Carlos, “Oroveso” at Opéra de Lausanne, “Masetto” at the Malmö Opera and “Il Commendatore” at Opéra de Rouen Normandie.Read more
In the 2021/22 season Nicolai sings “Colline” and “Il Commendatore” at The Royal Danish Opera (RDO) as well as “Doctor” and “Newspaper Clerk” in The Nose by Shostakovich. He will also be soloist in the Mozart Requiem with The Royal Danish Orchestra and in the Verdi Requiem with Copenhagen Phil.
In 2019 he was invited for the Vocal Residency at Festival d’Aix-en-Provence. Later that summer he sang the role of Il “Commendatore” and “Colline” at The Copenhagen Opera Festival.
Elsberg graduated from The Royal Danish Academy of Music in the summer of 2020 to join the soloist ensemble at RDO. Despite the pandemic, Elsberg was in 2020 fortunate to do three productions at RDO: “Plutone”, “Sarastro” and “Watchman” & “Masquerade Master” in the Carl Nielsen-opera, Masquerade, where he also jumped in and sang the main role of Jeronimus.
In June 2021 Nicolai represented Denmark in the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition as one of the 16 singers chosen from a record high number of applicants.
Elsberg’s rich sonorous voice has also caught the attention of contemporary composers such as Karsten Fundal and Rasmus Zwicki, who has written respectively an opera and an oratorio specifically for Elsbergs rare serious bass.
“The Great-singing, sky-tall bass Nicolai Elsberg, needs to be highlighted for eminent presence as arrogant Newspaper Clerk in wheelchair and decorative Doctor, as a take-off from the Russian country-aristocracy.”
Talent spotters may already have caught sight and sound of Nicolai Elsberg, a Danish basso profundo who in 2021 represented his country at both Cardiff Singer of the World and Operalia in Moscow. He has swept the board of opera prizes at home in Denmark, where in 2020 he joined the ensemble of the Royal Danish Opera. His voice has extraordinary presence. And as the former frontman of a Danish pop group, he knows how to hold the stage.”
“The sky-tall new Danish Bass Nicolai Elsberg was outstanding as the Commendatore.”
“Elsberg mediates with immense authority and timbre Sarastro’s composite ethos.”
Nordjyske, Aug 2021
“An elegant performer and a very exciting voice!”
Jeffrey Lloyd-Roberts, BBC Cardiff Singer of the World, June 2021
“Elsberg’s coat aria is the best interpretation I have yet heard – maybe helped by that his bass voice was more beautiful than any.”
Ascolta Opera Magazine, Dec. 2019