June 2011 - newsletter 17
MRM Artists Jump In
In March Sally Matthews sang Strauss Four Last Songs at short notice for the London Symphony Orchestra and Sir Colin Davis.
In May Andrew Foster-Williams sang Don Pizzaro Fidelio at the Brighton Festival with the OAE and Ádám Fischer, also at short notice.
MRM Artists Success in the Press
Sally Matthews - STRAUSS Der Rosenkavalier - Netherlands Opera - Sir Simon Rattle
Sally Matthews' captivating Sophie endows the girl with uncommon depth of personality and vocal allure.
George Loomis, The New York Times, 24 May, 2011
Sally Matthews - STRAUSS Four Last Songs - London Symphony Orchestra - Sir Colin Davis
Her voice, in Strauss, is ravishing...and Davis’s tempi allowed us to appreciate her quite exceptional breath control.
Tim Ashley, The Guardian, 23 March, 2011
Elizabeth Watts - THOMAS ARNE Artaxerxes - Classical Opera Company - Ian Page - Linn Records recording
…the more brilliant tone of Elizabeth Watts combines with her more vivid treatment of the words (try her first aria Fly, soft ideas)
John Steane, Gramophone, April 2011
…Mandane, a role that culminates in the virtuoso showpiece The soldier tir’d, here sung with dazzling accuracy and gleaming tone by Elizabeth Watts. Her voice is bigger than we’re today accustomed to in this kind of work, but it’s used throughout with great musicality.
Brian Robins, Opera, May, 2011
Elizabeth Watts - BACH Cantatas and Arias - The English Concert - Harry Bicket - Harmonia Mundi recording
…stunning…Watts does full justice to Bach’s long-lined vocal writing with sensitive phrasing and she consistently sings with plush, luscious tone…Watts also possesses the rare and enviable ability to communicate emotion through the sound of her voice alone, a gift that makes her a particularly strong interpreter of this repertoire…highly recommended for lovers of Bach and beautiful singing.
Derek Greten-Harrison, Opera News, June, 2011
Elizabeth Watts - BEETHOVEN Fidelio - The Royal Opera, Covent Garden - Sir Mark Elder
Elizabeth Watts’ Marzelline overcame her ironing routine and ridiculous chef’s hat to produce a steady stream of beautiful phrasing, and she mustered the necessary vocal heft for the ensembles.
Roger Parker, Opera, June, 2011
…Elizabeth Watts was a vivid and appealing Marzelline.
Hugo Shirley, The Telegraph, 30 March, 2011
…Elizabeth Watts’s Marzelline is unfailingly skillful.
George Hall, The Guardian, 30 March, 2011
Elizabeth Watts sings Marzelline with a warm and free voice.
Richard Fairman, The Financial Times, 31 March, 2011
…with Kurt Rydl and Elizabeth Watts perfectly embodying Rocco and Marzelline…
Michael Church, The Independent, 30 March, 2011
Katherine Broderick - Britten Complete Songs - Vol 1 - Malcolm Martineau - Onyx Classics recording
They are brilliantly performed by eight young singers. Katherine Broderick’s The Poet’s Echo is especially fine, her timbre appropriate to music composed for Vishnevskaya.
Michael Kennedy, The Sunday Telegraph, 29 May, 2011
Edgaras Montvidas - VERDI Rigoletto - Scottish Opera - Tobias Ringborg
...Edgaras Montvidas shines as the smarmy, honey-voiced Duke.
Kate Molleson, The Guardian, 18 May, 2011
...Edgaras Montvidas’ virile, virulent Duke...Montvidas’ sex addict Duke, a man whose dissembling sweet talk disguises a sledgehammer seduction technique. His La donna e mobile is callous, lusty, lyrical and carefree, with a frustrated edge that borders on the psychopathetic.
Sarah Urwin Jones, The Times, 13 May, 2011
...a notably graceful account of Parmi veder le lagrime...everything he sang showed musical intelligence and good style.
Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, 13 May, 2011
Edgaras Montvidas - Joyce DiDonato - DivaDivo - Virgin Classics recording
The Lituanian Montvidas, Almaviva in the Barbiere item and Tebaldo in the Capuleti, has a tenor voice one would be particularly glad to hear more of.
Max Loppert, Opera, June, 2011
Marcus Farnsworth - (World première) MAXWELL DAVIES Kommilitonen! - Royal Academy Opera, London
Kommilitonen! is an ensemble piece that prioritises collective singing – which from start to finish was magnificent…led by a conspicuously shining star in Marcus Farnsworth who sang the role of the black student Meredith with classic dignity and elegance.
Michael White, The Telegraph, 21 March, 2011
Marcus Farnsworth - MOERAN Complete Solo Folksong Arrangements - Adrian Thompson, tenor - John Talbot, piano. British Music Society recording.
…you should get hold of this outstanding disc. It is not far short of a revelation…every word sung by Marcus Farnsworth and Adrian Thompson is crystal clear. Both singers – the baritone has the lion’s share – are a pleasure to listen to; even in tone, injecting just enough variety into the usual strophic settings to dispel any threat of tedium.
Piers Burton-Page, International Record Review, March 2011
Mark Padmore - VAUGHAN WILLIAMS, RAVEL - Roger Vignoles - Navarro String Quartet - Queen Elizabeth Hall, London
In all songs, Padmore demonstrated his characteristically unforced approach, allowing himself to be carried by the music’s natural tides rather than producing them artificially.
Hannah Nepil, The Financial Times, 28 April, 2011
The later Three Poems by Walt Whitman inhabit that rapt, visionary sphere that Vaughan Williams made his own. Here Padmore, searching and poignantly expressive, was at his best. But he was impressive too in On Wenlock Edge...a new-found spirituality captured superbly by Padmore.
Barry Millington, The London Evening Standard, 28 April, 2011
Vignoles’ sonorous piano and Padmore’s ringing tenor were ideally balanced and the words came across directly...But the climax was the song cycle On Wenlock Edge...Padmore’s delivery of Housman’s poems had an impassioned intensity that was little short of feverish itself.
Erica Jeal, The Guardian, 1 May, 2011
...opening with Ravel’s Cinq mélodies populaires grèques the voice soared gracefully above; each song...was a perfectly-realised miniature...Padmore was on top form. It was less the beauty of his sound than its burning intensity, the sense of emotion stripped bare...All in all two hours in a sound-world of exceptional refinement and purity.
Michael Church, The Independent, 2 May, 2011
Andrew Tortise - BRITTEN Billy Budd - Muziektheater, Amsterdam - Ivor Bolton
… Andrew Tortise very touching as the Novice.
Richard Fairman, The Financial Times, 10 March 2011
Andrew Tortise - BRITTEN Complete Songs - Vol 1 - Malcolm Martineau - Onyx Classics recording
…Martineau has gathered a gratifyingly formidable array of young British talent…Andrew Tortise conveys rapturously intense emotions in Canticle 1, My Beloved is Mine…
Stephen Pettitt, The Sunday Times, 29 May, 2011
Andrew Foster-Williams - BEETHOVEN - Fidelio - Opera North - Sir Richard Armstrong
The finest singing came from Andrew Foster-Williams’ evilly beautiful Pizarro.
Tim Ashley, The Guardian, 16 April, 2011
Andrew Foster-Williams’ superb Pizarro…
Richard Morrison, The Times, 16 April, 2011
Andrew Foster-Williams’ Eichmannesque bureaucrat of a Pizarro sang his aria expertly.
Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, 17 April, 2011
Andrew Foster-Williams brings lieder-like clarity to the jealous ravings of Don Pizzaro.
Anna Picard, The independent, 24 April, 2011
Andrew Foster-Williams - BEETHOVEN - Fidelio - Brighton Festival - Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment - Ádám Fischer
In keeping with Fischer's approach, Andrew Foster-Williams gave us a demonic Pizarro, a very different characterisation from the corrupt bureaucrat he plays in the current Opera North production...
Tim Ashley, The Guardian, 10 May, 2011
MRM Artists forthcoming highlights
Ingela Bohlin sings performances of Brahms' Requiem in June, with the Residentie Orkest and Claus Peter Flor, in Amsterdam and The Hague.
Katherine Broderick during June and July will sing Helmwige in concert performances of Die Walküre; in June for Oper Leipzig and Ulf Schirmer and in July, in Manchester with the Hallé Orchestra and Sir Mark Elder.
Sally Matthews sings Mozart Mass in C Minor and Vesperae Solennes de Confessore during June and July, with Le Cercle de L'Harmonie and Jérémie Rhorer, throughout Europe, including Paris, Dortmund and London.
Elizabeth Watts in June, sings Serpetta in Mozart La Finta Giardiniera with the Academy of Ancient Music and Richard Egarr in Paris and London and in August sings Mozart Exsultate Jubilate and concert arias, at Snape, with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Donald Runnicles.
Fflur Wyn will sing A Young Blond Woman in the world première of Oscar Bianchi Thanks to My Eyes at the Festival d'Aix en Provence, during July.
Karen Cargill will be in San Sebastián in August to sing Mahler Symphony No 3 with the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin and then will sing Mahler Symphony No 2 at the Edinburgh Festival with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Donald Runnicles.
Edgaras Montvidas during June, sings further performances of the Duke in Verdi Rigoletto for Scottish Opera, on tour in Scotland and Ireland, and in August will be in Canada to sing The Fisherman in Stravinsky Le Rossignol and the tenor in Renard for Opéra de Québec.
Jeremy Ovenden sings Nerone in Monteverdi L'Incoronazione di Poppea for the Festival del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and Alan Curtis, in June. Then in July Jeremy will sing in Haydn Die Jahreszeiten at the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival; the conductor is Paul McCreesh.
Mark Padmore in June will sing Britten Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings at the Vienna Konzerthaus with the ORF Radio-Symphonieorchester Wien and Peter Eötvös. Also in June, Mark will sing performances of Schubert Die Schöne Müllerin with Paul Lewis at Wigmore Hall, London, and at the Schubertiade Schwarzenberg where he will also appear alongside Till Fellner in Schwanengesang.
Andrew Tortise in June will sing in Handel Occasional Oratorio at the Halle Festival with MDR Leipzig Radio Choir and Howard Arman.
Thomas Walker will sing Evangelist in Bach St John Passion with Al Ayre Español and Eduardo López Banzo for the Bachfest Leipzig and Mozart Requiem at The Sage Gateshead with the Northern Sinfonia and Thomas Zehetmair; both in June.
Marcus Farnsworth sings Eddy in Mark-Anthony Turnage Greek with Music Theatre Wales; performances throughout the UK beginning in June and concludes a tour with the Academy of Ancient Music singing Bach Ich habe genug and Zelenka Lamentations for Good Friday at the Spitalfields Festival, London.
Stephan Loges during June sings Maximilian in performances of Bernstein Candide at the Staatsoper Berlin and in July sings Schubert Schwanengesang with Juhani Lagerspetz and Winterreise with Jeremy Menuhin at the Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival, Finland.
Viktor Rud sings further performances of Dandini in the new production of Rossini La Cenerentola during June and Count Luna in Pfitzner Palestrina for the Staatsoper Hamburg.
Andrew Foster-Williams in June sings Nardo in Mozart La Finta Giardiniera in Paris and London, with the Academy of Ancient Music and Richard Egarr, joining Elizabeth Watts. In July Andrew sings in performances of Haydn Die Jahreszeiten at the Schleswig-Holstein Festival with conductor Paul McCreesh, here joining Jeremy Ovenden. He then sings Oroès in Catel Sémiramis at the Montpellier Festival with Le Concert Spirituel and Hervé Niquet, and in July and August, sings in performances of Brahms Requiem in Siena and Warsaw with Philippe Herreweghe and L'Orchestre des Champs Elysée.
Lukas Jakobski during June and July sings Angelotti in Tosca for The Royal Opera, Covent Garden and Antonio Pappano.
Simon Lepper gives a recital with Malin Christensson for the City of London Festival in June, including music by Handel, Mozart, Debussy and Chabrier. On July 7 he joins Elizabeth Watts and Stephan Loges for a recital at the Neuss Shakespeare Festival, in a programme to include arias and duets from Thomas Hamlet, Britten A Midsummer Night's Dream and Bellini I Capuleti ed I Montecchi.