Niels Jørgen Riis was born in Denmark. He was admitted into the Opera Academy at the Royal Theatre in 1994. He has attended master classes with Josef Protschka, Werner Hollweg, Håkan Hagegård, Ubaldo Gardini, Vera Rozsa-Nordell, Peter Berné, Oren Brown and Birgit Nilsson.

After his graduation, he was employed as part of the soloist ensemble at the Royal Danish Opera, Copenhagen.


His most recent and future engagements include (among others):

  • Don José/Carmen, the title role in Peter Grimes, Mario Cavaradossi/Tosca, the title role in Faust, Florestan/Fidelio, Kong Erik Klipping/Drot og Marsk, Leukippos/Daphne and Melot/Tristan und Isolde at the Royal Danish Opera;
  • Pinkerton/Madama Butterfly at Den Fynske Opera;
  • Wagner Opera Gala at Degeberga, Sweden;
  • a Christmas concert with Den Kongelige Livgarde Musikkorps.


At the Royal Danish Opera Niels Jørgen Riis has performed in a big number of productions such as in Simone Boccanegra as Gabriele, and in Lucia di Lammermoor as Edgardo. He performed Lenski in Eugene Onegin as well as the title role in Idomeneo, Ismaele in Nabucco, and Romeo in Romeo ét Juliette. His other roles include Der junge Seemann in Tristan und Isolde, Tanzmeister in Ariadne auf Naxos, Steuermann in Der Fliegende Holländer, Fenton in Falstaff, Alfredo in La Traviata, Marcellus in Hamlet, Nemorino in L’elisir d’amore, Tjaplitskij in Pigue Dame, Leander in Maskerade, Cavaliere Belfiore in Il viaggio a Reims, Narraboth in Salome, Edmondo in Manon Lescaut, Werther, Duca in Rigoletto, Rodolfo in La Boheme, Macduff in Macbeth and Alfred in Die Fledermaus.

Other past engagements of Mr. Riis include Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with Copenhagen Phil and Copenhagen Royal Chapel Choir, La Bohème at Teatro Coccia di Novara, Alfredo/La Traviata, Luigi/Tabarro and Leander/Maskerade at Copenhagen Royal Opera House.

Niels Jørgen Riis has performed with a number of international recognized conductors such as Bojan Sudjic, Stefan Parkman, Thomas Rösner, Walter Weller, Aldo Ceccato, Tamas Vetö, Børge Wagner, Tobias Ringborg, Moshe Atzmon, Bjarte Engeset, Gerhard Markson, Matthias Aeschbacher, David Riddell, Mats Liljefors, Sian Edwards, Angelo Cavallaro and Bo Holten.

As a concert singer, he has appeared in a number of oratorios such as Händel’s Messiah, Mozart’s Requiem (Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra), Gounod’s Cecilia-mass, Nielsen’s “Spring in Fuenen” (Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Royal Philharmonic Orchestra of Stockholm), Rossini’s Petit Messe, Puccini’s Missa di Gloria with Trondheim Symphony Orchestra and Verdi’s Requiem.

He has received several honors from foundations such as the Edith Allers Mindelegat, Kgl. Kammersanger Holger Bruunsgaards Mindelegat and the Aksel Schiøtz Price.


Niels Jørgen Riis – Farinelli – Livets glæder (The DKT Summer Opera, 2023)

Niels Jørgen Riis – Farinelli – Sangen har vinger (The DKT Summer Opera, 2023)



All events in May 2024: Singers

May 2024 All Events: Singers

We are thrilled to reveal all the projects (premieres and first performances) our Singers (listed alphabetically) have lined up for…