In May his vocals helped give Norway a top-ten finish with JOWST’s “Grab the Moment”. But now Aleksander Walmann has moved in a totally different direction: opera. He performed a difficult piece from the classic opera The Barber of Seville on Norwegian television — and he nailed it.
The performance was part of the long-running Norwegian series Stjernekamp (Battle of the Stars). Each week, some of Norway’s top performers tackle different musical genres. This week was opera week — a formidable challenge for any pop singer.
But Aleksander was able to grab the moment and deliver a bold, confident opera performance.
The piece, “Largo al factotum” is known as one of most challenging baritone arias to sing, due to the rapid pace and fiddly nature of the words which make it difficult for singers to manage. But Aleksander nailed it.
Judge Mona B. Riise was impressed. She told Aleksander, “From the Melodi Grand Prix entry “Grab the Moment” to this, there is a world in between. You were in the role and you had a great voice. You have control and sing with your abdominal muscles. I am very pleased!”
Aleksander has been delivering solid performances over the series. In Stadium Rock week he performed The Killers’ “Human”, in EDM week he got contemporary with Martin Garrix and Dua Lipa’s “Scared to be Lonely”, followed by Country week with Brad Paisley’s “Whiskey Lullaby”.
Last week was Hip Hop week, where Aleksander performed Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’s “Can’t Hold Us”. As well as giving a flawless delivery of the rapid-fire rap, he effortlessly switched to singing Ray Dalton’s chorus, making Aleksander a favourite to win the series.
Next week’s show has the theme of Blues/Group, followed by Hard Rock/Acoustic, then Musical/Reggae, then Disco/Joik, ending with the grand final.
The series also features many former stars of Melodi Grand Prix and two former Eurovision acts: Benedicte Adrian (ESC 1984), Hilde Lyrån (MGP 1994), Didrik Solli-Tangen (ESC 2010), Gaute Ormåsen (MGP 2010, 2013), Erlend Bratland (MGP 2015) and Ina Makeda Halvorsen Dyhre (MGP 2016). However, Benedicte, Makeda, Erlend and Hilde have since been eliminated from the contest.
What do you think? What genres would you like to see Aleksander perform? Are you looking forward to Disco/Joik week? Share your thoughts below!