Nelson Ebo was born in Angola in 1984 during the civil war. Since childhood, he struggled against that war and illness which claimed the lives of both parents and several siblings. With his powerful tenor voice and musical soul, Nelson was able to lift himself out of hardship while inspiring all those who heard him.
At the age of 14, Nelson was first introduced to choral music in his local church. His fascination with opera began by chance when he heard a CD of opera luminaries Luciano Pavarotti and Placido Domingo and taught himself to sing like them. He began to sing in Casa 70 in Luanda to pay for his own education and family’s wellbeing.
In 2001, Nelson was invited to sing at a human rights song contest organized jointly by the UN and the Angolan Ministry of Justice. Impressed with Nelson’s extraordinary talent, the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation supported Nelson to pursue the study of music in Spain. It is there where Nelson had the extreme honor of singing for the King of Spain as and having a private coaching session with Maestro Placido Domingo.
In 2008, Nelson moved to the United States as a scholarship student at the Hartt School of Music where he studied with Wayne Rivera. In 2011, Nelson auditioned for and was accepted as a “resident artist” at the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia where he studied with the renowned voice teacher, Bill Schuman.
Nelson has won awards from the Gerda Lissner Foundation, the Giulio Gari Foundation and Opera North and has performed in concerts in the United States, Europe, and Angola. In 2011, Marcello Giordani, an acclaimed tenor, invited Nelson to perform with him in concerts in New Jersey and Sicily. From September 2011 until May 2013, Nelson Ebo sang at various music events of the Academy of Vocal Arts, Philadelphia.
In 2012, 12 years after leaving Angola to study singing abroad, Nelson was invited back to Angola by Carlos Cunha to perform at the 14th anniversary of Casa 70. Through this concert, and the support of the First Lady of Angola, Nelson has returned numerous times to give concerts in Angola and Portugal. Nelson has appeared numerous times on television, radio, and newspaper in Angola, Europe and the US documenting his extraordinary journey out of poverty by virtue of his captivating voice and engaging spirit.
From 2013 to 2015, Nelson continued his professional studies in Italy and Germany. During this time, he participated in a Master Class with Mariella Devia, lessons with Janet Williams, and gave numerous concerts around Europe. Nelson recently moved back to the United States where he now studies and sings in New York City, debuting in Tosca and Eugene Onegin with La Forza Dell’Opera in 2016. Nelson has also been invited to be an artist with the Opera Singers Initiative (OSI) Vocal Institute in New York City for 2016.
Pinkerton - Madama Butterfly - Utah Festival Opera
As Pinkerton, UFOMT newcomer Nelson Ebo is despicable, as the role requires. His tenor tones are fabulous and timbre of his voice is penetrating, and his was a solid, appreciated performance. But the character’s morals cast a pall on all, making for an uneasy intermission
Florestan - Fidelio
Heartbeat Opera - May 2018