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new-classics.co.uk, September 2016

Staged by one of the most visionary theatre directors of our age, the Québécois Robert Lepage, the neo-classical morality tale truly becomes a grand spectacle. Lepage’s visual imagination works its magic superbly, while Kazushi Ono’s energetic musical direction drives the sparkling ensemble to exhilarating heights. An excellent cast is headed by Laura Claycomb (Anne Trulove), the fine young English tenor Andrew Kennedy (Tom Rakewell), William Shimell (Nick Shadow) and Julianne Young (Mother Goose). © 2016 new-classics.co.uk Read complete review



Lynn René Bayley
Fanfare, March 2014

STRAVINSKY, I.: Rake`s Progress (The) (La Monnaie - De Munt, 2007) (NTSC) OA0991D
STRAVINSKY, I.: Rake's Progress (The) (La Monnaie - De Munt, 2007) (Blu-ray, HD) OABD7038D

…The Rake comes to life in a way that is not only vivid but impresses the fun side of the opera on you. Tongue-in-cheek it may be, but The Rake’s Progress, seen and heard by this mostly magnificent cast, impresses you as funny and genial tongue-in-cheek, not at all mean-spirited or sarcastic.

And what a cast this is…this cast absolutely captivates and mesmerizes you, combining the very best qualities of good stage acting and vivid vocal characterization. This was the first time I heard tenor Andrew Kennedy, and he quite blew me away. Laura Claycomb might well have been born for this role, so completely does she identify with the character and so magnificently does she sing it. William Shimell is, for me, a perfect Nick Shadow…his dark, penetrating baritone perfectly suited for the part, and all the other roles…are handled beautifully…I recommend this as the finest acted performance of the opera…as well as a generally well-sung performance. © 2014 Fanfare Read complete review



Lynn René Bayley
Fanfare, July 2008

The cast is generally splendid. Laura Claycomb, though very plain of features, has an upper range that simply shines out like a silver sword. Her performance of the treacherous aria “No word from Tom” and its cabaletta “I go to him” is quite simply magical. Andrew Kennedy, as Tom, has a splendid if typically British tenor voice, bright and focused as a laser beam, though a little dry in tone. William Shimell has a very dark baritone, something of a Don Pizarro voice, perfect for Nick. Darren Jeffery’s warm, ingratiating voice is fine as Trulove. © 2008 Fanfare Read complete review



James H. North
Fanfare, July 2008

The solo singing is fine all around, …Claycomb sings well—“No word from Tom” and “I go to him” are glorious… Kennedy is excellent in all respects, convincing as the early devil-may-care Tom, suitably bewildered by the experiences Shadow thrusts upon him, and stunningly effective in his final madness. Shimmel is a smooth singer and actor; he is strongly reminiscent—in bearing and manner—of the late Metropolitan Opera impresario Rudolf Bing, who had a devilish mien. © 2008 Fanfare Read complete review



Don O’Connor
Gramophone, May 2008

Andrew Kennedy takes all this in his stride, and his always fresh, appealing tenor… © 2008 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone





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