Bass Kirk Eichelberger has been praised for “commanding the stage at every turn” (San Francisco Chronicle) and for his “resonant bass and riveting stage presence” (Dayton City Paper). During the 2017/2018 season his engagements included Alidoro in La Cenerentola with Opéra de Montréal, Zuniga in Carmen for the Spokane Symphony and Opera Coeur d’Alene and Commendatore in Don Giovanni for the Edmonton Opera. This season, he looks forward to a reprise of Commendatore in the Mozart masterpiece, this time for Manitoba Opera, and he appears as Don Basilio in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with the Livermore Valley Opera. San Francisco’s Young Women’s Choral Projects has engaged him for Abraham in Flames.
Recent engagements include The Emperor in Tan Dun’s Tea and Don Fernando in Fidelio with Opera Company of Philadelphia, Mephistophélès in Faust with Opera Grand Rapids, Sparafucile in Rigoletto with Vancouver Opera, and Ferrando in Il trovatore with both Opera Manitoba and Lyric Opera of Kansas City. Kirk made his Metropolitan Opera debut in Prokofiev’s The Gambler.
He has sung The Four Villains in The Tales of Hoffman with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, the title role in Le nozze di Figaro for Opera Memphis, and Alidoro in La Cenerentola with Sacramento Opera. On stage with the Festival Opera of Walnut Creek, Kirk has performed Timur in Turandot, and Bottom in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Concert engagements include Mendelssohn’s Elijah, as well as Mozart’s Requiem, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Handel’s Messiah, Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem, Bach’s B Minor Mass, Haydn’s Creation, Pärt’s Litany, Rossini’s Stabat Mater, Kodály’s Budavári Te Deum and Einhorn’s Voices of Light. A regular recitalist with Lieder Alive in the Bay Area, Mr. Eichelberger has performed Schumann’s Dichterliebe, Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, Brahm’s Vier ernste Gesänge, Strauss’ Rückert-Lieder and Wolf’s Michelangelo-Lieder.
Mr. Eichelberger was a national finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and also the MacAllister Awards for Opera Singers. He holds a Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Cincinnati-College Conservatory of Music and a Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, Illinois.
|Britten||Bottom||A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM|
|Donizetti||Don Pasquale||DON PASQUALE|
|Raimondo||LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR|
|Frère Laurent||ROMÉO ET JULIETTE|
|Massenet||Comte des Grieux||MANON|
|Mozart||Leporello/ Commendatore||DON GIOVANNI|
|Figaro||LE NOZZE DI FIGARO|
|Rossini||Don Basilio||IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA|
|Don Magnifico||LA CENERENTOLA|
|Stravinsky||Nick Shadow||THE RAKE’S PROGRESS|
|Wagner||Daland||DER FLIEGENDE HOLLÄNDER|
|Alaska Wolf Joe
|Bach||Mass in B minor|
|Beethoven||Symphony No. 9|
|Brahms||Ein Deutsches Requiem|
|Einhorn||Voices of Light|
|Kodaly||Budávari Te Deum|
|Mozart||Requiem in D minor|
“…bass Kirk Eichelberger plays four diverse villains with smoothly evil authority.”
“The devil gets the best lines in many circumstances, but rarely so definitively as when he’s portrayed by a singer like bass Kirk Eichelberger. His performance as Mephistopheles combined tonal suavity and power with a dark, sardonic edge that bespoke all sorts of demonic undercurrents; the duet with Marguerite in the cathedral scene was a tour de force of fiery bravado.”
San Francisco Chronicle
“As Mephistopheles (a k a the devil), Kirk Eichelberger vacillated between funny and downright frightening, his piercing bass sounding especially demonic in the Act 2 Golden Calf aria.”
The Birmingham News
“In many respects, it should be titled “Mephistopheles.” Kirk Eichelberger, suave, satirical and supremely confident, took great pleasure as the Devil in manipulating Faust or taunting villagers with man’s love of mammon. His lyric bass voice pierced the auditorium with laser-like precision and menace.”
Grand Rapids Press
“Operatic Devils should all speak French, wear snappy clothes and sound like Kirk Eichelberger. The bass’s thundering, cunning voice was the devil’s food cake of Opera San José’s Faust–dark, chewy and delicious.” Metroactive Stage
“But the evening belonged to Kirk Eichelberger who played Méphistophélès. Eichelberger’s resonant voice filled the hall with every sound. He was placed within the orchestra during his entrance to both “acts” and so his sound seemed to emerge from the instruments themselves. Eichelberger went to devil school. He was witty at all the right times, moved in all the right ways, and was just scary enough at all the right times. He is an amazing musician. I was so persuaded by Eichelberger that as I left the Hoffman Auditorium I was actually noticeably younger. I am still not completely sure what that will cost me. I’ll worry about that later.”
“The cast is remarkably strong and, to give the devil his due, Kirk Eichelberger is a standout as Mephistopheles. Stepping in on rather short notice for an indisposed David Michael, Eichelberger commands instant attention with his resonant bass and riveting stage presence. The sinuous, almost feline quality of his movements and his ability to fully inhabit his character bring to the drama a delicious sense of menace and malevolence that never flags.”
Dayton City Paper
“But the strongest vocal contribution came from the brilliant bass Kirk Eichelberger, making the most of a small assignment as Ferrando.”
San Francisco Chronicle
“The star here was bass Kirk Eichelberger, who added yet another item to his list of local triumphs with an uproarious and commandingly sung turn as Bottom. From his stage-hogging introductory scene, in which he insists on playing every role in the upcoming theatrical presentation, to his lazy romantic interlude with Tytania, Eichelberger endowed every episode with grandeur and controlled temperament.”
San Francisco Chronicle
“As Raimondo, the family chaplain, bass Kirk Eichelberger was necessarily underutilized (when will the company give this gifted singer the showcase production he deserves?). But he commanded the stage at every turn, bringing particular pathos to the moment in Act 3 when he reveals the depths of Lucia’s murderous derangement.”
San Francisco Chronicle
“The orchestra…began tentatively, then found their footing and smoked as bass Kirk Eichelberger entered with burnished-black notes and a cutting delivery. It was the sound of doom; Eichelberger was a scary delight all night.” San Jose Mercury News
“Bass Kirk Eichelberger was the very embodiment of Elijah, by turns pleading, scolding, reassuring, triumphing, despairing. He is a gifted actor — sensitive both to large emotions and to details of language — and a gifted singer, varying the colors in his voice for maximum effect.”
San Francisco Classical Voice
“Bass Kirk Eichelberger sings with distinction as the assassin Sparafucile.”
“Special mention must be made of bass Kirk Eichelberger’s truly frightening Ferrando.”
“Supporting roles were well handled, with bass Kirk Eichelberger as a rock solid Ferrando, projecting well and embodying his role admirably.”
Winnipeg Free Press
“San Jose opera fans already know the power and sureness of Kirk Eichelberger’s bass, but what really impresses here is his acting. One of the liveliest Leporellos I’ve ever seen, Eichelberger takes all that charisma and turns it inside-out, making of Alexei Karenin a black hole of a personality. His first monologue, “What is the shadow in her eye?,” is a brooding, coldy calculating appraisal, serving notice of two things: that the composer will use set pieces, and that Karenin will be the most strangely intriguing character in the piece.”
DON GIOVANNI WITH MANITOBA OPERA
KIRK EICHELBERGER will be with Manitoba Opera for their production of Don Giovanni from November 24 to 30, 2018.
DON GIOVANNI WITH EDMONTON OPERA
KIRK sang as Commendatore in Edmonton from March 19 to April 20, 2018.
LA CENERENTOLA AT OPÉRA DE MONTRÉAL
Bass KIRK EICHELBERGER sings the role of Alidoro in the latest production of “La Cenerentola” with Opéra de Montréal. Performances run at the Place des Arts, Nov 11-18, 2017.