Brett Dean’s Hamlet, Glyndebourne Festival Opera/Adelaide Festival
“…Douglas McNicol is Horatio, not a school mate of the hero’s but a much older man, a tutor maybe. The sincerity of his performance will break your heart. He delivers the final lines cradling the dying man. You weep. He is a treasure of Australia’s operatic world.”
Edwart Shaw, The Advertiser March 2018
Elijah, The Llewellyn Choir
“…The choice of baritone, Douglas McNicol, as Elijah, was an inspired one, too. He played the demanding role splendidly, singing much of it from memory, immersing himself totally into his character. His powerful voice, regardless of the volume, filled the large auditorium with ease, his diction clear all the way through. The drama and emotion he gave to the role were profound.”
Clinton White, City News Canberra , April 2016
Otello, State Opera of South Australia
“..Douglas McNicol is Iago. Before he even opens his mouth, he projects a character that ordered his dish of revenge several months ago, giving it time to be served with plenty of cool. When he sings, his voice drips with malevolence, with no compromise to his rich tone. The subtleties of facial expressions add intensity to the sociopath–politician–betrayer we all love to hate. See this show for McNicol’s performance alone; his second act Credo is a treat”.
Limelight Magazine, Gordon Forester, October 2014
"Could there be a better villain than Douglas McNicol’s Iago? His tour –de- force performance was not only brutally evil but outstanding"
Stage Whispers, Peter Pinne, October 2013
Tosca Opera Queensland
“Scarpia’s carnal and sadistic appetites in Act 2 embodies such veracity…truly malevolent in bearing and delivery ….”
M/Creviews, Elizabeth Emanuel, October 2011
The Love of the Nightingale Victorian Opera
“…Douglas McNicol’s Tereus – an unequivocal personal triumph for him, strongly sung and impeccably characterised .”
Opera Opera, David Gyger, September 2007
Following a brilliant 2014 when as Baron Scarpia in both Opera Australia's premier season of John Bells' Tosca and with West Australian Opera, as well as resoundingly succesful debuts as Jokanaan (Salome) SOSA and Iago for Opera Queensland, a most satisfying 18 months was topped off with the awarding to Douglas McNicol of the Adelaide Critics Circle Best Individual Performer Award in all genres of live performance, for his revival of the role of Iago with State Opera of South Australia.
Recent and forthcoming engagements include the roles of Horatio in Brett Dean’s Hamlet for Adelaide Festival, his directorial debut with Gianni Schicchi (in which he also performed the title role), Tonio in I Pagliacci, Leporello, Don Giovanni (for which he received a Helpmann Award nomination as Best Male Performer in a Supporting Role in opera) and his debut in Verdi’s Requiem and the Puccini Spectacular all for State Opera of South Australia as well as title role in Gianni Schicchi and Don Bartolo (Il Barbiere di Siviglia) for West Australian Opera. Douglas also appeared with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra in Faure’s Requiem under the baton of Simone Young.
After studying music and drama at flinders University in South Australia and voice at the Elder Conservatorium, Douglas spent a year as a member of Opera Queensland's Young Artist Program before undertaking extensive vocal study in Europe. He began his professional singing career in 1981 at the State Opera of South Australia, making his debut with The Australian Opera, now Opera Australia, in 1991. A recidivist finalist for Helpmann and Green Room awards, Douglas has also won the Australian Singing Competition, The National Opera Festival Award, and is a Churchill Fellow.
An engagement to sing the role of Scarpia in 2006 was an outstanding success and began a move towards more dramatic repertoire including such roles as Amonasro, Pizarro and Jokanaan.
Douglas’ continuing repertoire includes The Four Villains (The Tales of Hoffmann), Jokanaan, Pizarro (Fidelio), Verdi’s Iago, Amonasro (Aida), Don Carlo (La Forza del Destino), Rigoletto, Ford (Falstaff), Puccini’s Scarpia (Tosca), Jack Rance (La Fanciulla del West), Sharpless (Madama Butterfly,(available on DVD), Mozart’s Leporello (Don Giovanni), Count Almaviva (Le Nozze di Figaro), The Speaker (The Magic Flute), Don Alfonso (Così fan tutte), Peter (Hansel and Gretel), Jupiter (Orpheus in the Underworld), as well as Don Bartolo (Il Barbiere di Siviglia), Escamillo (Carmen), Dr Falke (Die Fledermaus), and Pooh Bah (Mikado).
Regarded as one of Australia’s most versatile and experienced baritones, notable engagements include the world premiere seasons of Richard Meale’s Voss 1986 (Adelaide Festival), and Richard Mills’ The Love of the Nightingale 2007 (Perth International Arts Festival). He has gained a reputation for excellence in contemporary opera, performing such roles as the Lieutenant in John Haddock’s opera, Madeline Lee for Opera Australia, Owen Hart in the Australian premiere of Dead Man Walking, Captain Gardiner Moby Dick (SOSA) and Roy Disney in Phillip Glass’ The Perfect American (OQ/ Brisbane Festival).
Other successful engagements have included the roles of Giorgio Germont (La Traviata), Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Figaro and Papageno, Marcello (La Bohème), Zurga (The Pearl Fishers), Valentin (Faust).
During his career he has worked for all the major opera companies and orchestras in Australia and New Zealand. with the Melbourne, Adelaide, Queensland, Tasmanian and West Australian Symphony Orchestras, and the Australian Chamber Orchestra as well as performing concerts in Italy and the UK, and as a guest artist at ‘Opera Under The Stars’ in Broome.
In concert and oratorio Douglas has a wide repertoire, performing in works such as Bach’s Magnificat, Christmas Oratorio, Mass in B Minor, St John and St. Matthew Passions, Purcell’s The Tempest, Berlioz The Childhood of Christ, Beethoven’s Symphony No.9, the Fauré, Brahms and Mozart Requiems, Handel’s Acis and Galatea, Messiah Mendelsohn's Elijah and The Bells by Rachmaninov.
Douglas McNicol resides in Adelaide, South Australia.
Douglas McNicol is managed by Graham Pushee: firstname.lastname@example.org
This biography is for general information purposes only and not for publication.
Please contact Arts Management for an up-to-date biography to suit your needs.