Biography

“You will probably never see or hear a better countertenor” - Herald Sun

David Hansen was born in Sydney, Australia. He studied singing with Andrew Dalton at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and furthered his studies with James Bowman, David Harper and Graham Pushee.

In 2004, David made his European début for the Aix-en-Provence Festival in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas. Shortly thereafter, he made his UK début in concerts with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra under the baton of Emmanuelle Haïm, as well as performing the title-role in Handel’s Fernando with Il Complesso Barocco under Alan Curtis for the Spoleto Festival, Italy.

Forthcoming engagements include Handel’s Theodora for the Händel-Festspiele Karlsruhe, Brett Dean’s Hamlet under Vladimir Jurowski for Glyndebourne Festival, Telemaco in Monteverdi’s Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria under De Marchi for the Innsbruck Festival of Early Music, Ruggiero in Handel’s Alcina under Andrea Marcon for the Bolshoi Theatre, concerts with Brodsky Quartet and his Wigmore Hall début.

Recent highlights include the role of David in Handel’s Saul under Nikolaus Harnoncourt at the Wiener Musikverein, Nerone in Handel’s Agrippina with Boston Baroque, Nerone in Boston Early Music Festival’s production of L’incoronazione di Poppea, Porpora’s Il Germanico under De Marchi at the Innsbruck Festival of Early Music, Telemaco in Monteverdi’s Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria under De Marchi for Den Norske Opera, the title-role in Handel’s Giulio Cesare under De Marchi for Semperoper Dresden, Farnace in Mozart’s Mitridate, Re di Ponto under Christophe Rousset for Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie, the title-role in Handel’s Serse under Jean-Christophe Spinosi, the title-role in Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice under Rinaldo Alessandrini for Den Norske Opera and Handel’s Parnasso in Festa at the Royal Concertgebouw under Andrea Marcon.

Concert highlights include Carmina Burana with the Berliner Philharmoniker under Sir Simon Rattle, the title-role in Handel’s Solomon with René Jacobs and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Bach’s Johannes-Passion with Les Musiciens du Louvre Grenoble under Marc Minkowski and Handel’s Messiah under Fabio Biondi.

Operatic engagements include the American premiere of Thomas Adès’ The Tempest (Alan Gilbert/Santa Fe Opera), Bertarido in Handel’s Rodelinda under Curtis, Handel’s Giulio Cesare (Jacobs/Theater an der Wien; Alessandrini/Den Norske Opera; Andreas Spering/Teatro de la Maestranza de Sevilla), Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo (Jacobs/Deutsche Staatsoper-Berlin), Handel’s Semele (Rousset/Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie), Nerone in Monteverdi’s L’incorinazione di Poppea (Antonio Florio/Teatro Calderón; Victorian Opera), Prince Go Go in Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre for Den Norske Opera, Jüri Reinvere’s Peer Gynt for Den Norske Opera, the title-role in Hasse’s Piramo e Tisbe (Musikfestspiele Potsdam Sanssouci), the title-role in Bontempi’s Il Paride (Christina Pluhar/Innsbruck Festival of Early Music) and Cherubino in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro (Teatro Verdi di Sassari). He has worked with directors including Stefan Herheim, Jonathan Kent, Barrie Kosky and Christof Loy.

David’s debut solo recording for Sony/dhm, Rivals – Arias for Farinelli & Co., with Academia Montis Regalis and Alessandro De Marchi was released in August 2013 to critical acclaim. His other recordings include Purcell: Music For Queen Mary, with the Academy of Ancient Music and the choir of King’s College Cambridge, available on EMI Classics, Cavalli’s Giasone and Vivaldi’s Griselda, both recorded for Pinchgut Opera Live. Future recordings include Bach’s Johannes-Passion with Les Musiciens du Louvre Grenoble under Marc Minkowski for Naïve and Handel’s Parnasso in Festa under Andrea Marcon.

“…a pure-voiced young Australian who is typical of a new breed of matinée-idol countertenors” - Alex Ross, The New Yorker