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Musical World

Anne Sofie von Otter

  • Mezzo-Soprano

Reviews

Anne Sofie von Otter press reviews

“Von Otter delivers both versions with scrupulous attention to the words and a sultry tone. Every rhetorical device is skilfully explored, every phrase glows, whether blithely (La Calisto), or with suppressed violence (Poppea)... For many listeners, however, von Otter's duets with Sandrine Piau will be the highlight. Stylistically, temperamentally and in terms of timbre, the two voices are a sensational match. Rarely have 'Pur ti miro' or 'Dolcissimi baci' sounded so erotic.” (Anna Picard, BBC Music Magazine, January 2013)

"The mezzos are out in force this autumn - Bartoli, Kozena, Graham, Garanca ...but this programme of 17th century Italian opera from Von Otter is perhaps the most remarkable of the lot. ... Her still plush mezzo entwines ravishingly with Sandrine Piau's brighter soprano, but the most remarkable parts of her "baroque dream" are Rossi's Lament of the Swedish Queen and Provenzale's astonishing parody of it." (The Sunday Times, October 2012)

"What a treat Anne Sofie von Otter proved to be, too. Frequently, Brangäne can descend into a hectoring and boring spinsterish part, but von Otter, in powerful voice, was sympathetic. " (Classical Source, October 2010)

"Von Otter was the focus of the first concert, wringing emotion from each syllable of lyrics that sounded life-changing when she sang them. Mehldau impressed for adjusting touch and timbre for first-half readings of Brahms, Faure and Richard strauss, and bringing out the influence on jazz pianists today of Sibelius's sparse rhythmic pedals." (Financial Times,June 2010)

"Ms. Von Otter's performance was the picture of interpretive subtlety, with carefully calibrated dynamics and coloration and a velvety tone that perfectly suited these graceful world-weary texts." (The New York Times, October 2009)

'Natürlich darf sie in der Sammlung nicht fehlen: die Arie "Erbarme Dich" aus der Matthäus-Passion - eine der anrührendsten Schöpfungen von Bach überhaupt. Mit ihrer Interpretation zeigt von Otter genau die Qualitäten, die sie zu einer der weltweit renommiertesten Sängerinnen gemacht haben: ein warmes und edel gerundetes Timbre, eine sorgfältige Textbehandlung und ein natürliches Stilempfinden. Kaum eine andere Mezzosopranistin ist so wandlungsfähig wie die Schwedin...'

Anne Sofie Von Otter/Bach: NDR Kultur, 12/05/09

'The recording is excellent, the playing of the Concerto Copenhagen ditto and the many admirers of Anne Sofie von Otter can safely invest in this issue without further ado.'

Anne Sofie Von Otter/Bach: MusicWeb International, 21/05/09

'Von Otter was the focus of the first concert, wringing emotion from each syllable of lyrics that sounded life-changing when she sang them. Mehldau impressed for adjusting touch and timbre for first-half readings of Brahms, Faure and Richard strauss, and bringing out the influence on jazz pianists today of Sibelius's sparse rhythmic pedals.

The second set opened with a selection from Mehldau's song cycle Love Songs. His composed settings of Sara Teasdale's poems had all the Mehldau hallmarks - closely argued chords, subtly altered motifs and a light pulse - and when combined with von Otter's voice were the highlight of the evening...."

Anne Sofie Von Otter/Brad Mehldau, Wigmore Hall - Financial Times, 07/06/10

'Anne Sofie von Otter complements her as as sympathetic, stioc, quietly powerful Countess Geschwitz...'

Metropolitan Opera, New York - Lulu, Financial Times, 11/05/10

'As the Countess, mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter made her spiky vocal lines sound as pristine as Mozart...'

Metropolitan Opera, New York - Lulu, NY Post, 10/05/10

'Anne Sofie brought a sad dignity to the Countess Geschwitz'

Metropolitan Opera, New York - Lulu, NY Times, 10/05/10

'...Anne Sofie Von Otter, statuesque and impressive as she lithely moved to the forefront of the orchestra while the musicians leaned into the beginning strains of Sherezade. Otter's lilting soprano led us on the journey as we sat raptly while the orchestra accompanied her incredible storytelling. It was truly an amazing spectacle of sound and sight.'

Royce Hall, Los Angeles/Orchestra de Radio France - Sheherazade, Entertainment Today, 19/03/10

'Next up was the song cycle Sheherazade, featuring Von Otter. She's among the most assured and natural of singers, and the ease with which she navigated this otherworldly piece of Orientalism brought an intimacy to the music that was plapable. It's hard to imagine a subtler or more convincing marriage of orchestra and singer than was achieved in this sequence.'

Granada theatre, Santa Barbara/Orchestra de Radio France - Sheherazade, Santa Barbara Independent, 16/03/10

'Von Otter, attired in an Asian-style dress of teal-blue sheen trimmed in gold cloth, met the full measure of the composer’s demands. Her control over extreme dynamics, her flawless intonation, her rhythmic accuracy — all seemed so effortless as to be uncanny. She made everything sound as natural and as easy as projecting a chorale in whole notes. Here we heard vocal artistry at its finest.'

Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco/Orchestra de Radio France - Sheherazade, San Francisco Classical Voice, 09/03/10

'Yet in a way, the most memorable part of all this was Sunday’s glorious vocalism by mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter...Von Otter, attired in an Asian-style dress of teal-blue sheen trimmed in gold cloth, met the full measure of the composer’s demands. Her control over extreme dynamics, her flawless intonation, her rhythmic accuracy — all seemed so effortless as to be uncanny. She made everything sound as natural and as easy as projecting a chorale in whole notes. Here we heard vocal artistry at its finest.'

Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco/Orchestra de Radio France - Sheherazade, San Francisco Musical Voice, 09/03/10