Biography

Jens Ibsen, composer/tenor, is a multidisciplinary artist whose vocal talents have led him to performances from Dubai to Shanghai, with stops along the way on German television and at Carnegie Hall and the UN. Ibsen was a principal soloist and the first African-born member of the world-renowned Vienna Boys Choir.

Ibsen has been commissioned by numerous festivals including the Oregon Bach Festival Composer Symposium and the Impulse New Music Festival. He was also commissioned for a partial film score for the film A Little Princess by the Mary Pickford Foundation. Other recent commissions include Concrete Sea for the Cincinnati Song Initiative, and an upcoming piece for The Kennedy Center’s Cartography Project, a commissioning initiative which “seeks to create a musical map of racial hate crimes across America and use music as both a source of healing and a way to open dialogue about the future of anti-racism.” He and his sister Yasmina co-wrote the libretto for the piece, which will be premiering in 2021. Ibsen’s string quartet, Overdrive received a reading by the JACK Quartet through their JACK studio program. Ibsen was a finalist in Beth Morrison Projects’ Next Gen Competition, which seeks out emerging voices in the field of new opera. An excerpt of his Mukhannath Songs was performed in the finalists’ concert.

Ibsen has also produced site-specific performances during his tenure with the Museum of Joy as their musician-in-residence. This culminated in two choral flash mobs in San Francisco, one of which took place on a BART train platform.

Ibsen is active as a performer on both coasts in New York and San Francisco as a freelance vocalist singing everything from early music to world premieres with ensembles such as Trinity Wall Street and OS Ensemble. In 2018, he sang the role of Triquet in Mannes Opera’s production of Eugene Onegin conducted by Julian Wachner. He is also a passionate recitalist, often collaborating with pianist-composer Preben Antonsen.

Ibsen completed his B.A in Music Composition at Pepperdine University under N. Lincoln Hanks while studying voice under Louise Lofquist. He received his M.M. in Music Composition at the Mannes School of Music under Missy Mazzoli while studying voice under Stephen Powell. Other composition teachers have included Randall Woolf, Matthew Brown, and Matthew Cmiel. His voice teachers have included Sheri Greenawald and Eva Lindquist. Ibsen currently has a mentorship with composer Anthony Davis through The National Association of Teachers of Singing’s inaugural Mentoring Program for Composers. He is a member of Pi Kappa Lambda Music Honor Society.