Die Walküre
July 10, 2017
Fiona Maddocks, The Guardian

At West Horsley, Grange Park Opera continued its impressive inaugural season with a new production of Die Walküre, played for the first time – and beautifully, too – by Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Stephen Barlow and directed by Stephen Medcalf…

Jenufa
July 10, 2017
Fiona Maddocks, The Guardian ★★★★★

It hadn’t been my intention to return to West Horsley…. But word of an extraordinary cast, led by Natalya Romaniw, tormented yet gentle in the title role, with Susan Bullock, raw, unsparing and impassioned singing her first Kostelnicka, made the trip imperative.

Die Walküre
July 10, 2017
Clare Colvin, Daily Express ★★★★

Claire Rutter as Sieglinde and Bryan Register as Siegmund bring conviction to their dawning discovery of their transgressive love. Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra under conductor Stephen Barlow captures the urgency and passion of Wagner’s extraordinary score.

Die Walküre
July 7, 2017
Mark Ronan

From the orchestra pit, Stephen Barlow and the Bournemouth Symphony orchestra fully brought out the high points of the score. Grange Park Opera’s first fully staged Wagner opera with Jamie Vartan’s imposing set and excellent lighting by David Plater, this was a resounding success.

Die Walküre
July 7, 2017
Robert Hugill, Planet Hugill

Thanks to the combination of Stephen Barlow, Stephen Medcalf, the admirable cast and orchestra, this was a profoundly satisfying account of Wagner’s Die Walküre. It made for an engrossing evening of musical theatre which belied the length of the piece…

Die Walküre
July 5, 2017
Andrew Benson Wilson

The singing was powerful and generally excellent. The cast was Siegmund: Bryan Register, Sieglinde: Claire Rutter, Hunding: Alan Ewing, Wotan: Thomas Hall, Fricka: Sara Fulgoni, and Brünnhilde: Jane Dutton. The Valkyries… made a suitably dramatic contribution to the final act.

Die Walküre
July 4, 2017
Richard Fairman, Financial Times ★★★★

Wagner’s characters come alive as living, believable people… A potent, romantic glow. Bryan Register sings Siegmund with strength. Claire Rutter is a trustworthy Sieglinde, Alan Ewing a vivid Hunding, and Sara Fulgoni more vivid still as a blazing Fricka.

Die Walküre
July 4, 2017
Richard Morrison, The Times

Under Stephen Barlow’s steady direction the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra sounds confident. This new theatre has a deep, very Wagnerian pit, and the voices easily come across. Thomas Hall’s Wotan sounds formidable… Claire Rutter’s Sieglinde… finds thrilling tone.

Die Walküre
July 4, 2017
Jim Pritchard, Seen and Heard International

Stephen Barlow did a fine job of accompanying the singers and drew some accomplished playing from the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. Stephen Medcalf extracts some wonderfully nuanced performances from his cast.

Die Walküre
July 4, 2017
Melanie Eskenazi, MusicOMH ★★★★

The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra played wonderfully for Stephen Barlow, whipping up far more excitement from the pit than one might expect. This Walküre is a fitting closing production to the first season in the Theatre in the Woods.

Die Walküre
July 4, 2017
George Hall, The Stage

Grange Park Opera is nothing if not adventurous. Just three weeks after it moves into a newly built theatre at a new venue, it takes aim at the second segment of Wagner’s Ring – the ultimate challenge in the entire standard repertoire.

Die Walküre
July 3, 2017
Louise Lewis, British Theatre Guide

Bryan Register (Siegmund) and Claire Rutter (Sielglinde) let rip, their passionate duet brings act I to an exciting end. Rutter really shines in this production, her excellent articualtion and quicksilver tone contains all the power required without becoming too approximate.

Die Walküre
July 3, 2017
Mark Valencia, What's on Stage ★★★★

High-end, high-res and high-concept, Stephen Medcalf’s new production for Grange Park Opera is an eye-opener. Jamie Vartan’s sleek, solid designs for Wagner’s Die Walküre (and by inference probably for a full Ring cycle) are mightily impressive.

Die Walküre
July 1, 2017
Peter Reed, Classical Source ★★★★

This is very much a director’s staging, but one that Medcalf has applied with great imagination, lightness of touch and many a moment of sly humour. Jamie Vartan’s fixed, elegant set is probably the grandest design I’ve seen at Grange Park, and it sits majestically on the new house’s stage.

Die Walküre
July 1, 2017
Richard Ely, Bachtrack ★★★★

Stephen Barlow and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra gave a sensitive account of the score, hardly ever overwhelming the singers. On this evidence, a complete Ring from the Barlow/Medcalf/Vartan team would be an enticing prospect.

Die Walküre
July 1, 2017
Gavin Dixon, The Art's Desk ★★★★★

Imaginative and intelligent… Wagner’s epic shines in compelling staging with strong cast. The standout performance in Act I is from Claire Rutter as Sieglinde. Her tone is pure and clear, and her German articulation impeccable.

Jenufa
June 25, 2017
David Mellor, Mail on Sunday ★★★★★

Grange Park Opera comes of age with this brilliantly cast Jenufa, starring Natalya Romaniw, a soprano of world-class potential. Susan Bullock shows there is no apparent end to her talent, with a completely convincing performance as the grief-stricken stepmother.

Jenufa
June 25, 2017
Mark Ronan

This was a very strong cast that performed and sang superbly. The BBC Concert Orchestra under the baton of William Lacey gave bite to Janáček’s remarkable music… its harrowing power found expression most strikingly in Natalya Romaniw’s fine performance of the title role.

Jenufa
June 24, 2017
Robert Hugill, Planet Hugill ★★★★★

A remarkable ensemble: Janacek’s Jenufa at Grange Park Opera’s new home… Natalya Romaniw combined a vibrancy of tone with the right lyricism to ensure that Jenufa was a real character in her own right, yet with a voice which soared over the orchestra.

Tosca
June 21, 2017
Ashutosh Khandekar, Opera Now

The opening of a brand new opera house is not an insignificant event, so trust Wasfi Kani, the dynamic CEO to choose (albeit inadvertently) a day of the utmost national importance – the UK’s 8 June General Election – to inaugurate her company’s new home, the Theatre in the Woods at West Horsley Place.