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Lise Davidsen signs exclusively to Decca Classics in major new deal

Wednesday 15 May 2018

Norwegian lyric dramatic soprano Lise Davidsen has signed exclusively to Decca Classics in a major new recording deal. Described as “a voice in a million” (Telegraph), Lise will make her debut for the label early next year performing Strauss’ Four Last Songs and arias from Ariadne auf Naxos and Wagner’s Tannhäuser.

On signing to the label, Lise Davidsen said: “I’m delighted to begin my recording career with Decca – a label which is home to many amazing singers who I admire. I’m looking forward to performing some of my favourite vocal repertoire and sharing my love of music with a wider audience.”

Dr. Alexander Buhr, Managing Director of Decca Classics, said: “Lise Davidsen is a remarkable talent. Her astonishing voice, incredible musicianship and commanding stage presence make for truly spine-tingling performances. Decca has a history of nurturing and documenting many of the greatest voices of the last century and we are proud and happy to open a new chapter of that story with Lise.”

Lise is the first Scandinavian dramatic soprano to sign to Decca since Birgit Nilsson, whose centenary is celebrated this year. She is also the first Norwegian singer to join the label since her compatriot Kirsten Flagstad made her acclaimed late recordings for Decca in the 1950s.

Lise Davidsen grew up in Stokke, a rural town in south-eastern Norway, and began studying guitar and singing at the age of 15. She achieved her bachelor’s degree in 2010 from the Grieg Academy of Music in Bergen and later graduated from the Royal Danish Academy of Music and the Opera Academy in Copenhagen.

Lise shot to prominence in summer 2015 when she was crowned winner of both the Operalia and the Queen Sonja competitions. Her breakthrough performances won her the First Prize, Birgit Nilsson Award and Audience Prize at Plácido Domingo’s Operalia competition, where she was hailed as “the real deal” by the Financial Times.

Since her breakthrough, Lise has made a series of acclaimed opera debuts, including: Medea by Cherubini at the Wexford Festival; Ortlinde in Die Walküre at Bavarian State Opera; Agathe in a new production of Der Freischütz at Zürich Opera House; Isabella in Das Liebesverbot at Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires; and the title role in Ariadne auf Naxos at Glyndebourne Festival and Wiener Staatsoper. As The Times wrote of her Glyndebourne debut, “It will surely go down as one of those ‘I was there’ moments.” Lise will reprise her role in Ariadne auf Naxos at the Aix-en-Provence Festival this July.

On the concert platform, Lise continues to wow audiences – her UK recital debut at the Wigmore Hall earned glowing reviews and she was artist-in-residence with the Bergen Philharmonic. She has performed Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra as well as Strauss’ Op. 27 songs with the Oslo Philharmonic – a collaboration she will reprise at the Edinburgh International Festival on 16th August 2018. Lise made her debut at the BBC Proms last year, and this summer she will return to sing Verdi’s Requiem with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Andrés Orozco-Estrada on 30th August.

Still only 31, Lise Davidsen is making her mark at opera houses around the world. Some of her notable engagements include debuts and leading roles with the Metropolitan Opera, Bayreuth Festival, Bayerische Staatsoper and Deutsche Oper Berlin. She will also debut at the Royal Opera House later this year in Wagner’s Ring Cycle.

With her debut Decca recording in 2019, there is no stopping this young singer as she embarks on a new chapter in her thrilling career. As the Associated Press affirmed, Lise Davidsen is “on the brink of stardom”.

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