Reviews & Features

Recent press reviews, interviews & articles
Vespers of 1610

★★★★
"The overall beauty of the orchestra's sound is outstanding."
Sam Smith, Music OMH, 29 July 2019

★★★★★ 
"A thrilling, operatic take on this spectacular musical showcase."
Boyd Tonkin, Artsdesk, 26 July 2019

"Garsington, as might be expected, has done full justice to this choral masterpiece."
Nicola Lisle, Ox in a Box, 25 July 2019

"If Laurence Cummings's performance was the most virtuosic of the evening, it was damned near equalled by the early instrument orchestra, and the five soloists."
Paul Levy, Arts Journal, 29 July 2019

"The English Concert and The English Cornett and Sackbutt Ensemble gave an electrifying account."
Lark Reviews, 26 July 2019
 

The Turn of the Screw

"Richard Farnes led a gripping performance."
Hugh Canning, Sunday Times, 7 July 2019

​★★★★★ 
"Exceptional quality...the casting is impeccable."
David Mellor, Mail on Sunday, 7 July 2019

★★★★★ 
"A hauntingly great show."
Richard Morrison, The Times, 2 July 2019

★★★★★ 
"A truly great achievement, devastating and unforgettable."
Tim Ashley, The Guardian, 3 July 2019

★★★★ 
"One of Garsington's best achivements yet."
Fiona Maddocks, The Observer, 7 July 2019

★★★★ 
"Intensely spooky...as gripping as it can be."
Richard Fairman, Financial Times, 2 July 2019

★★★★★
"Bevan gives a radiant performance."
Clare Colvin, The Sunday Express, 14 July 2019

★★★★ 
"Gripping and truly haunting."
Barry Millington, Evening Standard, 2 July 2019

"Deft, elegant and genuinely chilling."
Alexandra Coghlan, The Spectator, 13 July 2019

★★★★★
"Outstanding in every way."
Amanda Holloway, The Stage, 4 July 2019

★★★★★
"Outstanding."
Mark Pullinger, Bachtrack, 2 July 2019

★★★★★
"By far the most powerful production of this work that I can remember seeing."
Stephen Walsh, Arts Desk, 5 July 2019

★★★★★
"Louisa Muller's new production scores almost on too many points."
Peter Reed, Classical Source, 1 July 2019

★★★★
"Louisa Muller has given Garsington yet another hit."
Melanie Eskenazi, Music OMH, 8 July 2019

"Master Jemison has the makings of a star."
Paul Levy, Arts Journal, 29 July 2019

★★★★
"Sophie Bevan's spellbinding Governess, a triumph of vocal and dramatic intensity."
Andrew Green, Opera Now, 1 August 2018

★★★★★
"Sung and staged to perfection."
Claudia Pritchard, Culture Whisper, 2 July 2019

"Garsington's approach is a revelation. Gripping stuff."
Rebecca Lipkin, The Arbuturian, 3 July 2019

"Bevan splendidly evokes the troubled mind of the Governess...thrillingly sung."
Mike Smith, Art Scene in Wales, 2 July 2019

"One of the great events at Garsington...haunting and unforgettable."
London Theatre Views, 20 July 2019

"A hauntingly memorable interpretation."
Mark Ronan, The Article, 6 July 2019

★★★★
"A superb production."
Owen Davies, Plays to See, 9 July 2019

"Richard Farnes and Louisa Muller have produced a dramatic, musical and visual experience which is truly memorable."
Susie Cogan, Daily Info, 9 July 2019

"Sophie Bevan sings consistently with innate musicality and authority."
Curtis Rogers, Seen and Heard, 13 July 2019

"There is no weak link in the cast."
Gina Thomas, Frankfurter Allgemeine, 18 July 2019

"The cast's immaculate performance was utterly absorbing."
John Burleigh, Henley Standard, 12 July 2019

"When carried through as well as this there is little room for doubt it is a masterpiece and masterly done."
Lark Reviews, 6 July 2019

 

Fantasio

"Performances of star potential from Hanna Hipp, Jennifer France and Huw Montague Rendall."
Hugh Canning, Sunday Times, 23 June 2019

★★★
"A strong cast is well led by Hanna Hipp."
David Mellor, Mail on Sunday, 23 June 2019

★★★
"A terrific cast and razor-sharp routines."
Richard Morrison, The Times, 17 June 2019

★★★
"It is Justin Doyle's orchestra that make the strongest case for this long-neglected work."
Hannah Nepilova, Financial Times, 18 June 2019

★★★
"Jennifer France was outstanding as Princess Elsbeth."
Fiona Maddocks, The Observer, 22 June 2019

"Two central performances of terrific charisma and charm."
Richard Bratby, The Spectator, 22 June 2019

★★★
"The most striking numbers involve Princess Elsbeth, sung with brilliance and charm by Jennifer France."
Yehuda Shapiro, The Stage, 17 June 2019

★★★
"The terrific Garsington Opera Chorus...binding everything and everyone together into a single musical ensemble."
Matthew Rye, Bachtrack, 15 June 2019

★★★
"The singing is excellent. Jennifer France dazzles and enchants."
Alexander Campbell, Classical Source, 14 June 2019

★★★★
"Justin Doyle's excellent conducting gets to the very heart of the piece."
Sam Smith, Music OMH, 15 June 2019

★★★★
"Let pride of place in the plaudits go to the Garsington Opera Chorus and Orchestra."
Andrew Green, Opera Now, 1 August 2018

"This was a performance which both intrigued and engaged."
Robert Hugill, Opera Today, 18 June 2019

"A rare gem. At the production's centre is a pair of outstanding turns."
Russell Baily, Daily Info, 9 July 2019

"A rare treat."
Elestr Lee, Henley Standard, 13 July 2019

★★★★
"A classy revival - a merry romp in the festival's larkiest spirit."
Christopher Gray, The Oxford Times, 25 July 2019

"Hanna Hipp delivers a charming and spirited Fantasio."
Scarlett Roitman, Diary of a Londoness, 2 July 2019
 

The Bartered Bride 

"Garsington strikes gold again."
Hugh Canning, Sunday Times, 9 June 2019

★★★★
"Natalya Romaniw is the outstanding British lyric soprano of her generation."
Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, 30 May 2019

A lively production well worth waiting for. 
Simon Heffer, The Daily Telegraph, 16 June 2019

★★★★
"The outstanding performance is Natalya Romaniw, in grand, luscious voice."
Neil Fisher, The Times, 30 May 2019

★★★★
"A winning production. The four principals ensure you don't want the music to stop."
Martin Kettle, The Guardian, 3 June 2019

★★★★
"An excellent cast."
Nick Kimberley, Evening Standard, 30 May 2019

★★★★★
"The most felicitous production of it I could ever imagine."
Michael Church, The Independent, 31 May 2019

★★★★
"Natalya Romaniw gives a wonderfully rounded performance in glorious voice."
Clare Colvin, Sunday Express, 9 June 2019

The ideal summer opera.
Richard Bratby, The Spectator, 8 June 2019

★★★★★
"Garsington Opera at the top of its game."
George Hall, The Stage, 30 May 2019

★★★★
"Setting high operatic standards for Smetana."
Sebastian Scotney, theartsdesk.com, 3 June 2019

★★★★★
"This vivacious, meticulously executed production is a joyful experience from beginning to end."
David Karlin, Bachtrack, 30 May 2019

★★★★
"A wonderfully imagined and musically classy show."
Melanie Eskenazi, Music OMH, 31 May 2019

★★★★★​
"The sheer verve and vitality of the Garsington Opera Chorus and circus performers."
Alexander Campbell, Classical Source, 31 May 2019

"Wonderful new production."
Paul Levy, Arts Journal, 10 June 2019

★★★★
"There is a rare charm and warmth about this production."
Claudia Pritchard, Culture Whisper, 30 May 2019

★★★★
"An exuberantly performed, perfectly pitched first show of the season."
Alexandra Coghlan, Broadway World UK, 30 May 2019

"This show was perfectly cast."
George Hall, Opera Magazine, 1 August 2019

"The perfect headliner for Garsington Opera's 30th Anniversary Season."
Claire Seymour, Opera Today, 2 June 2019

★★★★
"A production that overwhelmingly justified bringing a popular favourite into a serious opera setting."
Andrew Green, Opera Now, 1 August 2019

"The kind of zing that defines a world-class outfit."
Mark Valencia, Musical America, 29 May 2019

"The Philharmonia Orchestra gave an emotionall charged and frequently thrilling account of the score."
 Lark Reviews, 10 June 2019

"The delicious antics on stage are matched by playing from the pit."
Mike Smith, Arts Scene Wales, 2 July 2019

"One of Garsington Opera's most thrilling productions yet."
Amanda Sadler, Henley Standard, 10 June 2019

"The Philharmonia Orchestra shone throughout under the baton of Jac van Steen."
Christopher Gray, The Oxford Times, 4 July 2019

"A winning summer's evening."
Curtis Rogers, Seen and Heard, 12 June 2019

 
Don Giovanni

★★★​★​
A group of talented young singers. Jonathan McGovern is splendid. 
David Mellor, Mail on Sunday, 9 June 2019

★★★​
"This staging has flair and a splendid lead."
Richard Morrison, The Times, 3 June 2019

★★★​
"The women of the cast are excellent."
Clare Colvin, Sunday Express, 9 June 2019

Douglas Boyd's bouncy period-instrument orchestra rippled with colour. 
Richard Bratby, The Spectator, 8 June 2019

★★★​
"A taut account of the score delivered under Douglas Boyyd's sure-footed direction."
George Hall, The Stage, 31 May 2019

★★★​
"Sky Ingram scored a personal triumph."
Mark Valencia, Bachtrack, 31 May 2019

★★★★
"This is the most exciting and well thought-through Don Giovanni I have seen for years."
Claudia Pritchard, Culture Whisper, 31 May 2019

★★★​
"Sky Ingram's was the performance of the Summer Festival scene so far."
​Melanie Eskenazi, Music OMH, 3 June 2019

★★★​
"Jonathan McGovern's lithe acting and seductive baritone carry the evening."
Peter Reed, Classical Source, 30 May 2019

"I, and the loudly cheering audience, hugely enjoyed Michael Boyd's production."
Paul Levy, Arts Journal, 10 June 2019

"The Garsington Opera Orchestra was excellent, and Douglas Boyd made the overture and ensembles crackle with energy."
Roger Parker, Opera, 1 August 2019

"Sky Ingram sang with a winning combination of strong and colourful emotion and control of melodic line."
Claire Seymour, Opera Today, 3 June 2019

"Singer of the evening was David Ireland as Leporello - a voice to eagerly follow in the future enhanced by the most natural dramatic gifts."
Andrew Green, Opera Now, 1 August 2019

"Trystan Llŷr Griffiths is one of the most convincing Don Ottavios I can recall. His singing is magnificent."
Lark Reviews, 10 June 2019

"A lively and refreshing take."
Maureen Idowu, Henley Standard, 10 June 2019

"The stage direction is first rate...the production achieves wonders."
Curtis Rogers, Seen and Heard, 23 July 2019

30th Anniversary Season previews

Garsington Opera: the future's bright
Sunday Times

Garsington's resurrection of an opera by Offenbach
Country Life

Pastoral Harmony: How Garsington's verdant setting plays a starring role in its world-class performances
Harper's Bazaar

How Garsington's grand designs grew even grander
Opera Now Magazine

Martin Duncan & Francis O'Connor on the challenge of a naturally-lit stage
Opera Magazine

Garsington Opera launches programme with fun, thrills and tingles down the spine
Oxford Mail

Sweet symphony
Wildflower Magazine