Alwyn Mellor

Soprano

Alwyn Mellor
REVIEWS

Britten: War Requiem / Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

“Mellor’s voice had an arresting transparency, as devoid of piercing shrillness, it floated serenely above the groundswell of the orchestra. Mellor’s performance was controlled throughout; she demonstrated fine musicianship through her humility and emotive responsiveness to the orchestral backdrop.”

Seen and Heard International

 

Wally: La Wally / Chelsea Opera Group

“Alwyn Mellor put passion and drama into her fiery performance of Wally...”

The Guardian

 

 “As the free-spirited Wally Alwyn Mellor was moving in her big aria...”

The Times

 

Elgar: The Kingdom / MDR Symphony Orchestra

“She fulfilled easily the enormous demands of the piece, which are almost of a Wagnerian nature.”

Leipzig Almanach

 

Minnie: La Fanciulla del West / Opera North

“…Alwyn Mellor sounds perfect in the key role of saloon owner Minnie…”

The Arts Desk

 

“… with a winning toughness and resourcefulness…. her voice opens thrillingly to the climaxes, both romantic and dramatic.”

The Daily Telegraph

 

“Alwyn Mellor portrays Minnie as a doughty woman who tempers principle with pragmatism. There’s no mistaking who is boss when this Minnie is around, even when her heart is a-flutter, and Mellor hits her notes confidently and cleanly.”

The Financial Times

 

“Alwyn Mellor gets the balance between Minnie's dreams of personal happiness and her duties as foster mother to the miners just right, and copes heroically with the cruel demands of Puccini's vocal writing.”

The Guardian

 

“Alwyn Mellor is truly resplendent as Minnie…”

The Mail on Sunday

 

"In Opera North's new staging, directed by Aletta Collins and conducted by Richard Farnes, Alwyn Mellor sings the title role. An impressive Wagnerian with a growing reputation, she has many of the credentials for Minnie: might, presence, vocal strength. You believe her authority over these men, to whom she is teacher, comforter, nurturer and an awkward mix of mother and would-be lover. This is her story, of finding love among bandits and cheapskates, gamblers and drunks, in the end betraying her own standards by cheating to achieve her heart's desire."

The Observer

 

“…a splendid trio of principals, centred on Alwyn Mellor’s robust Minnie…(Richard Farnes) never had to fear for balance with Mellor, whose soprano is capable of Wagnerian thrills…when she cut back her tone with supreme restraint, it was genuinely moving.”

Opera

 

"Soprano Alwyn Mellor takes the title role, the lone woman who rescues Ramerrez and brings out the better side in the miners whom she tries to educate. She fills it splendidly, and makes a believable heroine. The scenes at the heart of the opera, in which see and Ramerrez get to know each other, are beautifully sung and acted.”

Opera Now

 

“Alwyn Mellor has, over recent years, been emerging as one of the world’s notable Wagnerians, not just by virtue of a big voice, but by one that is absolutely secure and capable of impressive range, colour and dynamic. Her scenes in the second act with the two main male protagonists were vocally and dramatically especially powerful.”

Seen and Heard International

 

“Alwyn Mellor’s grand-scale, warmly maternal Minnie is superbly sung.”

The Stage

 

"Alwyn Mellor's voice is supple and bright…(Aletta) Collins directs her so sympathetically that the audience roots for her enthusiastically."

The Sunday Times

 

“…she captures perfectly Minnie’s ingenuous open-heartedness.”

The Times

 

“Richard Farnes, whose control of this orchestra is by now legendary, finds exactly the right blend of poetry and power. Here his greatest ally is (Alwyn) Mellor herself. She is able to generate Wagnerian levels of sound when the going gets heavy, so that Farnes never has to worry about balance. Here she is thrilling, not least at the top of her range which is extraordinarily resonant. Yet at more intimate moments, such as her Act 2 prayer or when she calls in her various charitable favours in the final act, she can cut back her tone with supreme restraint. This contrast is one of the sensations of the evening.”

The York Press

 

"Alwyn Mellor plays the part of Minnie – a feisty yet vulnerable saloon owner who falls in love with the dastardly Mexican bandit Ramerrez, played by Rafael Rojas. She is spellbinding and captivates the audience from the moment she enters the stage and breaks up a fight in The Polka."

Wakefield Express

 

“Alwyn Mellor sings Minnie with warmth and (when required) passionate attack…”

What’s On Stage

 

Tosca / Opéra de Limoges

“It is true that the composer demands great vocal athleticism from his singers. Lovers of song would not have been disappointed with Alwyn Mellor and Francesco Anile…the soprano displayed a pure vocal line in Acts 2 and 3. Her Vissi d’arte, the celebrated aria in Act 2 after Scarpia has made his horrible proposition, was simply overwhelming.”

Le Populaire

 

Tosca / Welsh National Opera

“Many famous divas have tackled the role of Tosca taking advantage of the vocal and dramatic opportunities this role offers. With beautifully even rounded tones Alwyn Mellor was always fully in command of the role climaxing with a beautiful rendition of the famous aria Vissi d’arte. Her duets with Geraint Dodd's passionate painter Cavaradossi were equally enjoyable.”

Crackerjack Gloucestershire

 

“It's all dramatic stuff and the story unfolds with terrific gathering momentum. However, it's the music and performances that really matter and this is lifted by Alwyn Mellor in the title role. People emerged from the packed auditorium murmuring: "What a Tosca!" She captures the essence of the prima donna while also singing with emotional range and depth.”

This is Exeter

 

“Great direction needs great players, and in the lead-role, there could scarcely have been a better Floria Tosca than Alwyn Mellor, whose superb voice, immense power and dramatic presence proved the undoubted highlight.”

The Herald, Plymouth

 

Tove: Gurrelieder / Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra

"(Edward) Gardner was fortunate, too, with his Tove, the British soprano Alwyn Mellor. Mellor has an Isolde voice equal to everything Schoenberg throws at her: it soared over the Wagnerian orchestra with gleaming tone."

The Sunday Times

 

“Alwyn Mellor, already no stranger to Isolde, was a warm Tove.”

The Telegraph

 

Ariadne: Ariadne auf Naxos / Opera Ireland

“...Alwyn Mellor sang with power and passion, capturing well the abandoned Ariadne’s desperate plight.”
Sunday Business Post

 

“...soprano Alwyn Mellor (Ariadne) and mezzo Kinga Dobay (Composer) both sang and acted their roles splendidly.”
Opera

 

“...most impressive of all was the gloriously sung Ariadne of the soprano Alwyn Mellor...”
The Sunday Times

 

Chrysothemis: Elektra / Canadian Opera Company

“…Alwyn Mellor, who plays Elektra’s sister Chrysothemis, nearly stole the show with her performance.”

BLOGTO

 

“Alwyn Mellor makes for a very strong Chrysothemis, her voice rising evenly and powerfully to the precipitous heights of the role.”

Concerto.Net

 

“…the soprano Alwyn Mellor gives us a touching and convincing Chrysothemis with her luminous voice and presence.”

Forum Opéra

 

“Her laser-beam top notes and a touch of vocal wildness recalled none other than Leonie Rysanek.”

Opera

 

"British soprano Alwyn Mellor gave Elektra’s hapless sister Chrysothemis more heft than usual, to good effect.”

Toronto Star

 

"To round things out, soprano Alwyn Mellor claims her own piece of the stage as Elektra's sister Chrysothemis and holds her own in the face of these two powerful performances (Susan Bullock and Ewa Podles) to complete a performance triangle that is virtually unassailable.”

Toronto Sun

 

Chrysothemis: Elektra / Opera North

“Alwyn Mellor (Chrysothemis) sang with mellow beauty throughout and came into her own in the final duet.”

City Life, Manchester

 

“Alwyn Mellor, oozing repression and torrential top notes is the superlative Chrysothemis….”

The Guardian

 

“Susan Bullock had no trouble riding the orchestra. Alwyn Mellor as her sister, Chrysothemis, almost had power to match. This was unusual in my experience where Chrysothemis is normally pitched against a considerably more powerful soprano in the main role.”

Music Web International

 

“Bullock was perfectly coupled with Alwyn Mellor, playing the sister Chrysothemis. Her depiction of Chrysothemis, who wants life, was superlative.”

The Northern Echo

 

“Alwyn Mellor sang superbly and was especially moving in her wish for a normal life with children, sung with tender sincerity and no trace of self-pitying hysteria.”

Opera

 

“Alwyn Mellor’s thrilling, sensuous Chrysothemis…”

The Sunday Times

 

Senta: Der fliegende Holländer / Florentine Opera Company

“Soprano Alwyn Mellor gives a gripping performance as Senta, the woman who eventually sacrifices herself for the Dutchman, mixing vocal clarity, strength and facility with theatrical depth.”

Journal Sentinel

 

“…as the dramatic conclusion approached, her huge soprano opened to glorious high notes.”

Express Milwaukee

 

Senta: Der fliegende Holländer / Opera North

"Alwyn Mellor as Senta combines towering strength and vulnerability."

The Arts Desk

 

“The redoubtable Alwyn Mellor, born to be a Wagner principal, was Senta, and she got it just right at every level, from her sustained top notes to her ability to act – she was brilliant even when silent, gazing into those mesmerizing eyes on screen."

Bachtrack

 

“…Alwyn Mellor’s thrillingly ardent Senta.”

The Guardian

 

“…it was Alwyn Mellor who provides the most passionate, complete and detailed performance as Senta. Mellor was superb.”

The Independent

 

“Alwyn Mellor as Senta used her thrilling vocal power to make her self-sacrifice seem inescapable.”

Nottingham Post

 

"Alwyn Mellor‘s Senta combines a touching vulnerability, tenderness and obsessive moral strength…the voice was in sovereign form throughout its considerable range."

Opera Britannia

 

“Alwyn Mellor confirms her Wagnerian credentials with the glowing amplitude of her soprano and a rock steady ballad.”

The Telegraph

 

Senta: Der fliegende Holländer / Welsh National Opera

“…Alwyn Mellor's Senta was possessed of a strength and radiance of voice and presence sufficient to project a character capable of demonstrating that her convictions were more than mere infantile fantasy, hitting the notes fearlessly in her Act 2 ballad."

Wagner News

 

Brünnhilde: Der Ring des Nibelungen / Avie CD

"…a compelling Valkyrie from Seattle's latest Brit import. Alwyn Mellor (again, as we have heard at Leeds and Longborough) has an attention to detail and dynamics reminiscent of Anne Evans. She never forces, never shows off but steers through the part with a beacon-like concentration, especially effective in the moments with Wotan, Waltraute and Siegfried where Brünnhilde sings again after much listening. An impressive, valuable performance with a good balance of the role's vocal peaks."

GRAMOPHONE

 

“Alwyn Mellor’s Brünnhilde sings with burnished, vibrant tone and splendid fire and passion.”

BBC Music Magazine

“Mellor flings out a steely, exuberant “Hojotoho.” (Her) dialogues with other characters reveal stirring temperament and psychological penetration…achieves a rich presence in both fury and forgiveness.”

Opera News

 

“Alwyn Mellor appears as the Valkyrie Brünnhilde, daughter to Wotan as well as his rebellious conscience and bride to Siegfried. Rare is the artist who brings to this marathon a sound of such roundness and luster, or a spirit so transparent, youthful and feminine.”

Wall Street Journal

 

Brünhhilde: Der Ring des Nibelungen / Seattle Opera

“…Mellor’s lean and lyrical Brünnhilde – hers was an athletic, nuanced and feminine portrayal.”

Opera

 

“Alwyn Mellor’s first appearance as Brünnhilde was impressive: the treacherous cries of “Hojotoho!” were both accurate in pitch and heroically and confidently sung. She was both tender and heroic in the last scene of Siegfried and quite superb in Götterdämmerung. This was an extremely intelligent singer who paid careful attention to the text. She too is a good actor with a fine stage presence.”

Wagner Society in Queensland

 

Brünnhilde: Götterdämmerung / Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra

“The vocal soloists are strong, with Alwyn Mellor as Brünnhilde and Christian Franz as Siegfried very much the centre of focus…Brünnhilde’s great, summing up closing scene was magnificently interpreted by Alwyn Mellor.”

Göteborgs-Posten

 

Brünnhilde: Götterdämmerung / Opera North

“Alwyn Mellor’s Brünnhilde sings with accuracy, control and power.”

The Arts Desk

 

“Alwyn Mellor, a born Brünnhilde, previously seen as Minnie in La Fanciulla del West, was engaging, technically brilliant and fresh throughout, from her duet with Siegfried in the Prologue’s love scene to the final conflagration, when she gave a performance which was volcanically passionate.”

Bachtrack

 

“Alwyn Mellor the most touching Brünnhilde I have ever heard, subtle right to the end of her world-denouncing Immolation…”

Birmingham Post

 

“Alwyn Mellor's Brünnhilde…settled to deliver the production's most plushly impressive vocal display.”

The Guardian

 

“Mellor, introduced into this cycle as Sieglinde, impressed then, as now, with her animation, never afraid to wear her heart on her sleeve. Her disappointment at Siegfried’s treachery was tangible. Her no-holds-barred, open tone allowed her to ping her top notes with deadly accuracy while keeping a smile on her face, thus riding the orchestra exultantly. She has matured wonderfully, even over these past two seasons, and is unquestionably in the very top flight of Wagnerians anywhere.”

Opera

 

“This year’s Brünnhilde, Alwyn Mellor, was the gloriously sung, guilt-ridden Sieglinde in Opera North’s Die Walküre two years ago. Earlier this year she triumphed at Opera North in the “post-Wagnerian” role of the tender-hearted Minnie in Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West. Mellor’s Brünnhilde, like her Minnie, combines abundant tenderness with the necessary glint of steel, as well as astonishing vocal stamina, a rich middle register and fearless, laser-like top notes. She is an altogether more human, and for me, a more complete Brünnhilde than either Kelly Cae Hogan or Annalena Persson (the Die Walküre Brünnhildes). The voice deliciously melds with Turi’s Siegfried in the Prologue’s love duet. “Zu neuen Taten”, in which she exhorts Siegfried to new deeds sounds appropriately radiant and heroic. Mellor’s profoundly moving Immolation Scene is not all high-tensile steel but conveys nobility, a serene inner dignity and sense of resignation. Hers is an astonishing portrayal that I feel incredibly lucky to have experienced.”

Opera Britannia

 

“Alwyn Mellor maintained her dominating presence throughout, vocally improving as the evening progressed, her multiple high notes soaring without, mercifully, excessive vibrato. She had to ride an orchestral sound louder than any you might ever hear in a Wagner performance. For some time now she has suffered the tag of “up and coming” as potentially one of the great Wagner sopranos of her generation. It is time to declare that she has arrived.”

Seen and Heard International

 

“…the evenness of the vocal casting outclasses even Barenboim’s far better endowed Staatsoper. That’s not to say that Alwyn Mellor is a superior Brünnhilde to Nina Stemme. They are quite different, in fact: the British soprano is more Italianate in style, as Wagner himself would surely have enjoyed…She sings beautifully throughout, without forcing her big lyric soprano or blurring the words. This is her finest achievement to date — in my presence at least — and she crowns it with a rapt Immolation Scene, justly cheered to the rafters at her solo bow.”

The Sunday Times

 

“Outstanding among the cast is Alwyn Mellor, whose Brünnhilde gets better and better as the evening progresses…the Immolation was radiantly commanding.”

The Telegraph

 

“The gleaming soprano of Alwyn Mellor as Brünnhilde seems limitless in its power to sound out and to move.”

The Times

 

“Alwyn Mellor sang Brünnhilde effortlessly and supremely…”

Wagner News

 

“Alwyn Mellor is that rare beast, a powerful dramatic soprano whose voice still retains its youthful luminosity. If she can avoid singing Brünnhilde too often in the years ahead – or Isolde for that matter – she is set fair to become the great Wagner heroine of her day.”

What’s On Stage

 

Brünnhilde: Götterdämmerung / Seattle Opera

“Alwyn Mellor continued to do more than merely sing the role of Brünnhilde; she seemed to occupy it. Her performance was emotionally true in every important respect and, like Stefan Vinke, she moved in what we may call an age-appropriate manner.”

Huffington Post

 

“Mellor herself takes us on a journey, vocally and dramatically, and presents a very different character from the teenager of Die Walküre. She has power for the big moments - fire-snortingly so in Act 2 - and isn't afraid to sing softly. Her voice production is very reminiscent of Cheryl Studer's (a distinguished Wagnerian although never a Brünnhilde) and her tone is always beautiful.”

Taminophile

 

“On Saturday she sailed through her impossibly demanding part in Götterdämmerung with power and subtlety, performing with affecting dignity and commanding presence. Brünnhilde is the one character who develops and matures over the course of the Ring; it’s she who best comes to understand the anarchic power of love and its consequences. Mellor shows Brünnhilde’s journey from supernatural hoyden to smitten lover, then to betrayed, very mortal, but very powerful woman. When, near the very end of saga, she calmly intones the words “All is now clear to me,” we experience a shattering emotional truth that eludes many of the other singer/actors. This popular Ring will be remembered as one of the high points of Speight Jenkins’s extended tenure as General Director of Seattle Opera. But Alwyn Mellor’s Brünnhilde is its real triumph.”

The Vancouver Sun

 

Brünnhilde: Götterdämmerung (Scenes) / Wagner Society, London

“This scene paved the way for the biggest thrill of all: Alwyn Mellor and the Immolation. It was really her afternoon and she sang as though possessed and gave us a full measure of the ecstasy and hysteria, the “Wahn-illusion” that propels Brünnhilde to her destiny.”

Wagner News

 

Brünnhilde: Siegfried / Den Nye Opera

“Alwyn Mellor: a young, impressive Wagner soprano with formidable expressive power, crystal clear top notes and the power to soar to the rafters and deliver the final high C in radiant triumph.”

Bergens Tidende

 

“I was moved to tears by Alwyn Mellor’s magnificent Brünnhilde, as steady and sure as Flagstad.”

Hort

 

“Alwyn Mellor had the beauty of voice we expect of a Brünnhilde…”

Kultur Musik

 

Brünnhilde: Siegfried / Longborough Festival Opera

“…sings Brünnhilde with radiant tone and vivid dramatic intensity.”

The Arts Desk

 

“…and Alwyn Mellor is wonderful as Brünnhilde, waking to a radiance of voice which already makes us fear for the trauma she is to undergo in Götterdämmerung.”

Birmingham Post

 

“As the awoken Brünnhilde, Alwyn Mellor, singing with breadth of phrase and warmth of tone, once again proved that she is an exceptionally promising dramatic soprano in the Anne Evans tradition.”

The Daily Telegraph

 

“…Alwyn Mellor’s voluptuous-sounding Brünnhilde…”

The Guardian

 

“…Alwyn Mellor (no relation) as Brünnhilde gleams with promise.”

Mail on Sunday

 

“The Lancastrian soprano Alwyn Mellor, currently making a rapid ascent up the Wagner ladder, was an equally assured, impassioned Brünnhilde.”

The Observer

 

“Her voice has a full, old-fashioned sound with laser-bright top notes. It is usual these days for much lighter voiced sopranos to be cast as Isolde and Brünnhilde and it is good to hear a heavier voice again and Ms Mellor is in the great British tradition of Rita Hunter, Jane Eaglen and, more recently, Susan Bullock…”

Seen and Heard International

 

“As in last year’s Walküre, Alwyn Mellor ignited the final scene with her blazing voice and her committed acting.”

The Spectator

 

“British soprano Alwyn Mellor adds further to her Wagnerian reputation with her confident Brünnhilde.”

The Stage

 

“Both Daniel Brenna’s bouncy, youthful-looking Siegfried and Alwyn Mellor’s Brünnhilde have pingy Italianate timbres and sing musically and generously…”

The Sunday Times

 

“We have to wait till the end of the opera to glimpse Alwyn Mellor in the role of Brünnhilde, but she is well worth waiting for. Passionate and feisty, the iron maiden demonstrates she is no push-over as she thrills the audience with her top Cs.”

This is Gloucestershire

 

“Wotan’s great Valkyrie daughter is sung magnificently by Alwyn Mellor, the voice aglow and fiery.”

The Times

 

“But what can I say? Magnificent? Sublime? I have already said enough I think in my thoughts on her Isolde. And yet, perhaps vocally she was on even finer form – and now against the forces of a greater and more powerful orchestra, under the control of one of Britain’s leading unsung Wagnerian conductors and a wonderful Siegfried. Top, middle and bottom of her register were magnificent. Even with the excellent cast that the Grahams had somehow managed to assemble, on awakening it is as if a Brünnhilde of legend has entered the stage. It is no wonder that Seattle have selected her as their Brünnhilde for 2013.”

The Wagnerian

 

“Alwyn Mellor, so impressive as Isolde at Grange Park earlier in the season, is a fresh voiced and attractive Brünnhilde.”

What’s On Stage

 

“ …the radiantly voiced Brünnhilde of Alwyn Mellor.”

Whitaker’s Almanac 2012

 

“In the final scene with Siegfried, Alwyn Mellor showed immense power and presence as Brünnhilde…”

Word Press

 

Brünnhilde: Siegfried / Opéra national de Paris

“Alwyn Mellor makes a fine Brünnhilde…”

Altamusica

 

“I can’t fault Alwyn Mellor’s performance as Brünnhilde: she has a huge voice in very much the vocal tradition one associates with Brünnhilde.”

Bachtrack

 

“The combined visual and musical effect of the great awakening scene is spellbinding, and Alwyn Mellor shows us a Brünnhilde performed with sensitivity and incredibly radiant vocal control, especially when one considers the difficulty of taking the stage for this final scene without any previous singing.

Formalhaut

 

“Alwyn Mellor showed the acting skills first seen in Die Walküre and completely inhabited the role. Her voice is strong and beautiful, giving power to the sublime duet where Brünnhilde discovers human love.”

Francetv.fr/Culturebox

 

“"Alwyn Mellor was in a class of her own as Brünnhilde, as vocally secure as Nina Stemme, if not more so. Her voice was fresh and brilliant, as well as full-blooded and rich at the core. She conveyed above all the youthful energy and wonder of the goddess, as she discovers what it’s like to be human. Her expression of her alternating flows of fear and reluctance was flexible and humanly convincing."

New York Arts

 

“…she nailed her top Cs with thrilling precision, which brought the evening to a triumphant conclusion.”

Opera News

 

“The English soprano Alwyn Mellor has the spirit and warrior maiden timbre to embody Brünnhilde.”

Res Musica

 

Brünnhilde: Siegfried / Seattle Opera

“…she sang like the daughter of a God and moved like a teenager in full hormonal bloom.”

Huffington Post

 

“…from the legato phrases that immediately precede the “Siegfried Idyll” section until the end, the role posed no problems for her musically or interpretively.  And when both she and Vinke hit that high C at the end of the opera, I could only shake my head in disbelief as chills went down my spine…”

Murmurs from the Balcony

 

“…fielded plenty of bright, womanly tone and the top Cs were present and correct.”

Taminophile

 

Brünnhilde: Siegfried / Symphony Hall, Boston

"Alwyn Mellor as Brünnhilde gave the afternoon's standout vocal performance, multi-layered, tonally lustrous and riveting."

Boston Globe

 

“Though she got to offer no "Hojotohos" in this opera, Brünnhilde, as essayed by the gleaming-toned Alwyn Mellor, rather got to tell us of her awakening womanhood and yielding to human desire. Her chemistry with Siegfried was as exemplary as her high Cs."

The Boston Musical Intelligencer

 

“Alwyn Mellor, who must have one of the most sumptuous voices of anyone singing Wagner today, combined with the profoundest sensitivity to Wagner’s poetry.“

New York Arts

 

Isolde: Tristan und Isolde / Grange Park Opera

“Alwyn Mellor makes a highly promising debut as Isolde: her red-blooded soprano combines a firm middle with a confident top, manipulated with stamina, strong attack and clean intonation.”

The Daily Telegraph

 

“The quality of singing is also high, with Richard Berkeley-Steele and Alwyn Mellor strongly cast as the lovers…”

Evening Standard

 

“It would be wrong to categorise Grange Park's Tristan as a chamber musical just because the auditorium is intimate. Alwyn Mellor and Richard Berkeley-Steele, in the title roles, possess dramatic voices that they were not afraid to unleash where appropriate. But the proximity of stage to audience did encourage a more nuanced style than we are accustomed to in Wagner, and both singers sang with exemplary diction, betokening an uncommon understanding of the text and a desire to communicate it intelligently and musically.”

Financial Times

 

“Taking on the two vast and almost inhumanly demanding title roles here are Alwyn Mellorand Richard Berkeley-Steele. The pair possess the sheer stamina to see them through the long evening, with Mellor's fleshy-toned Isolde sounding amazingly fresh as she soars through the climactic Liebestod.“

The Guardian

 

“…the lovers’ characterizations are skilfully developed and the Liebestod is touchingly staged. Both Berkeley-Steele and his Isolde, Alwyn Mellor, have the emotional and vocal stamina for their roles…”

Independent on Sunday

 

“Alwyn Mellor is becoming a revelation as a Wagner Singer.”

Mail on Sunday

 

“As for Alwyn Mellor as Isolde, the tone was full and generous, her sound focused, her sense of attack and forward momentum almost faultless…But as she sang, so she performed – this was a wild, spirited Irish princess onstage, a character brimming with energy from her first notes to her last. I found her total convincing, bull-blooded, exciting and a born Wagnerian singer.”

Musical Criticism

 

“Lancashire-born Alwyn Mellor has sprung to the fore as a considerable Wagnerian soprano, full of heroic stamina and passion.“

The Observer

 

“The performances were tremendous: as Tristan and Isolde, Richard Berkeley-Steele and Alwyn Mellor gave their all…a performance of such heroism and poignancy that the audience was doubly drawn into their dilemma…the most successful Tristan und Isolde I’ve seen.”

Opera

 

“Alwyn Mellor (Isolde) displays a gorgeous Soprano, rich in expression, meeting all demands whether high and dramatic or sublime in piano. Her Isolde is vocally the complete package, and at no point needs to hold back to survive the long opera. She is intense and believable in all she does, never falling into false pathos. To experience her in this role is a revelation, and one hears many things anew.”

Segeberger Zeitung

 

“Besides her impressive voice, she has plenty of temperament, and encompasses the whole of Isolde’s emotional range, from the fury and frustration of Act 1, to the excited and expectant woman in love of Act 11, to the at first distraught and finally transfigured heroine of Act 111.”

The Spectator

 

“Tristan und Isolde is an impressive achievement all round, but most of all for Alwyn Mellor, making her debut as Isolde. Possessing the amplitude and genuine vocal resources of a Wagnerian soprano, she soars strongly all evening and is moving as the ultimately transfigured lover.”

The Sunday Telegraph

 

“But the roles of Tristan and Isolde are still massive vocal challenges, to which Richard Berkeley-Steele and Alwyn Mellor rose with admirable stamina, fervour and musicality. She was magnificently feisty in Act 1, but even better in the bedroom where she turned down the volume and let the lyricism flow. And she had enough left in the tank to deliver a Liebestod that must have shaken all of Hampshire.”

The Times

 

“Her Isolde is not only a revelation due to her fine acting – which manages to make this the most human of Isoldes – but so is her vocal performance. Rarely does one truly feel one is in the presence of an Isolde of exceptional beauty and quality but tonight was one of those nights.”

The Wagnerian

 

“Alwyn Mellor's Isolde is the vocal triumph of the night. It's a performance that can only grow and Mellor's first Isolde promises great and greater things.”

What’s On Stage

 

“ …Richard Berkeley-Steele’s Tristan, captain of a modern ferry boat, and Alwyn Mellor’s Isolde were splendidly sung.”

Whitaker’s Almanac 2012

 

“The entire cast is electric and Alwyn Mellor is simply captivating as Isolde. In a whirlwind performance of near boundless energy her voice and her actions explode across the stage in a purely raw performance.”

Word Press

 

Isolde: Tristan und Isolde / Opéra national de Bordeaux

“Alwyn Mellor hurled out powerful high notes with impressive commitment.”

Altamusica

 

“In a role familiar to her (as with that of Brünnhilde), Alwyn Mellor started with monolithic strength, adding ever more enriching nuances until the somnambulistic apparition that preceded the Liebestod.”

Concert Classic

 

“The British soprano Alwyn Mellor is an experienced Isolde and tore into her music with a brave attack. The top of her voice blazes with intensity — rarely has the opening of the Act II love duet and its awkward top C's been approached with such fearless brilliance.”

Opera News

 

Isolde: Tristan und Isolde / Washington National Opera

“…Alwyn Mellor also achieved dramatic and vocal dominance in her single performance of the role. The two sopranos could not have been more different in personality and technique. (Irène) Theorin was like a painter who used a fine brush to build a unified portrait composed of multiple details, while Mellor was like an abstract impressionist using a wide brush to splash bright colours across a broad canvas. Where Theorin was subtle, Mellor was volcanic.”

Wagner Society of New York Newsletter

 

Liebestod: Tristan und Isolde / Philharmonia Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall

“Alwyn Mellor an additional luxury as soprano soloist, followed with otherworldly ecstasy.”

Financial Times

 

”Alwyn Mellor surfed over the orchestral waves in the Liebestod with all the seamless authority you would expect.”

The Guardian

 

Liebestod: Tristan und Isolde / Philharmonia Orchestra at the Three Choirs Festival

“Alwyn Mellor, the rich-toned and impassioned Isolde…”

The Guardian

 

“Her voice is a sumptuous instrument and she had no trouble in projecting even quiet passages into the big space of the cathedral.”

Seen and Heard International

 

“Alwyn Mellor gave an appealingly intimate performance.”

The Telegraph

 

Brünnhilde: Die Walküre / Longborough Festival Opera

“Alwyn Mellor brought both stature and vulnerability to Brünnhilde…”

Birmingham Post

 

“Alwyn Mellor makes a storming entrance as Brünnhilde, but it is her closing honey-toned pleas to Jason Howard, an imposing Wotan, that made the most profound impression.”

Crackerjack Gloucestershire

 

“The high-fiving Valkyries were terrific, splendidly led by Alwyn Mellor’s Brünnhilde – bold and brazen in her whooping war-cries, warmly eloquent in her summons to Siegmund and her pleading with Wotan.”

The Daily Telegraph

 

“…her command of the part’s huge musical and dramatic demands is sensational.”

The Guardian

 

“Mellor put in a tremendous effort and her vocal entrance alone, staggering in the rising arpeggiated form that Wagner requires from her, was a triumph.”

The Independent

 

"Mellor is physically strong, with impeccable articulation and beautiful phrasing, never over-emphasising individual words, but always expressive. The range is extensive with strong support as the voice expands above the passagio. The Valkyrie's cry was fierce but well controlled and perfectly in tune. The voice is secure and lustrous with a touch of bite reminiscent of Régine Crespin or Gré Brouwenstijn, which makes it particularly attractive. Passages like "Zu Wotans Wille sprichst du" and "War es so schmälich" were beautifully executed...I was often reminded of Polaski in her sense of commitment to and vivid expression of the drama, and her ability to communicate that elusive blend of privacy and intelligence in the exploration of Wotan's will. She also knows how to communicate the epic grandeur of the character in her scenes with Siegmund and Sieglinde, especially in the scene with the Valkyries before Wotan's arrival...Already an outstanding performance far surpassing those of Linda Watson and Lisa Gasteen, the Brünnhildes of Bayreuth and Covent Garden."

Mundo Clásico

 

“Alwyn Mellor, the most impressive Brünnhilde I can remember seeing since Deborah Polaski, phrases with an intensity similar to the latter and sings better, with a voice both warm and penetrating and no forcing in the passagio or gloriously placed high register.”

Ritmo

 

 “…Alwyn Mellor’s voice sounded excitingly enormous…”

The Spectator

 

“Alwyn Mellor sang with convincing authority and her interactions with Jason Howard’s Wotan were beautifully done.”

The Stage

 

“Alwyn Mellor’s feisty, Italianate Brünnhilde and Jason Howard’s imposing Wotan are already estimable portrayals.”

The Sunday Times

 

“As for Mellor, her first war-cries are thrilling…”

The Times

 

“Alwyn Mellor was a Brünnhilde rich in sonority and musicality…”

Wagner News

 

Brünnhilde: Die Walküre / Opéra national de Paris

“As for the excellent Brünnhilde of Alwyn Mellor, she sings perfectly, with a welcome vocal stability, a strong, clear timbre, and the necessary intensity for Act 111.”

Altamusica

 

 “What a lovely, brave girl. One to watch.”

Concert Classic

 

“Alwyn Mellor’s expressivity and presence enable her to create an almost childish Brünnhilde, very different from the stereotypical image.”

Formalhaut

 

“The British soprano lacks nothing in technique or power, the high tessitura of the Battle Cry causing no more difficulty that the middle range of the confrontation with Siegmund. Neither does she lack the youthful, naïve presence, too often overlooked for a character who is almost an adolescent.”

Forum Opéra

 

“As Brünnhilde, the English soprano Alwyn Mellor has the timbre, the range and the courage.”

Francetv.fr/Culturebox

 

“The greatest pleasure is to find such an evenly balanced cast…the highly promising Brünnhilde of Alwyn Mellor…”

Le Monde

 

“Alwyn Mellor is a Brünnhilde with a crystal-clear timbre.”

La Règle du Jeu

 

“In her debut at the Paris Opera, Alwyn Mellor makes a most interesting Brünnhilde, clear and fresh, spontaneous and youthful, ideally suited to the first day of the Ring. The voice is easy at the top, with an attractive timbre and she surmounts without any difficulty the demands of a difficult role.”

Opérachroniques

 

Brünnhilde: Die Walküre / Seattle Opera

“Alwyn Mellor’s Brünnhilde had fabulous top notes… She also sang with perfect diction that allowed me to catch every word – a rare feat for a dramatic soprano!”

Bachtrack

 

“Mellor’s artistry showed in Walküre, as did her lyricism, her vocal strength and the sheer beauty of her voice…”

CityArts

 

“The real discovery, however, is the “Brünnhilde” of British soprano Alwyn Mellor.  She was the unknown quantity going into this cycle, and she has proved to be a stunning singer in this repertoire.  I first heard her several years ago when she was still singing Mozart and much lighter repertoire, and although I had read about her transition into singing Wagner, I wasn’t prepared for how thoroughly convincing she was.  Her opening war cry was thrillingly secure with every trill and high note in place—something most “Brünnhilde’s” have to fake.”

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell, Dallas Opera

 

“Alwyn Mellor played a youthful Brünnhilde in Die Walküre with a bright upper register and near perfect ‘Hojotohos.’”

GBOpera

 

“…an extraordinary singer who happens to be an extraordinary actress.”

Huffington Post

 

“…the British soprano Alwyn Mellor, whose portrayal of Brünnhilde in Die Walküre had the dramatic range to match her enthralling vocal presence. It’s been said that the Ring contains three Brünnhildes, but already in this opera Mellor homed in on different layers of her character beyond the exuberant war cry that first introduces her – above all in the Death Annunciation scene, where she learns compassion from the doomed Wälsung twins, but also in the bewilderment displayed in her last confrontation with Wotan. More than ever before, I was riveted by the “gulf of misunderstanding” that tragically separates her from the “warfather” god – but that will set her on the path to her own liberation.”

Memeteria

 

“Seldom has the Valkyrie’s famous calling card sounded so opulently secure: no vague swoops or screeches, just thrillingly accurate quality.”

The Seattle Times

 

“Alwyn Mellor, in Die Walküre, brings the punch the role requires, but at softer volume shows off her voice’ s silken surface.”

Seattle Weekly

 

“The sound is beautiful and she is accurate in alt –the battle cry unusually so”

Taminophile

 

Gerhilde: Die Walküre / Royal Opera, London

“…the eight fearsome sisters (all well cast, especially Alwyn Mellor’s Gerhilde and Katherine Broderick’s Ortlinde)…”

Opera

 

Sieglinde: Die Walküre / Opera North

“But the evening’s crown was Alwyn Mellor’s Sieglinde. Coached by Anne Evans a great Wagnerian soprano of the Reginald Goodall era, she phrased eloquently in lucid German and produced evenly polished tone through Du bist der Lenz and her mad scene to the breathtaking climax of O hehrstes Wunder. You’d be lucky to hear as good at Bayreuth.”

The Daily Telegraph

 

“…the evening belongs to Erik Nelson Werner’s Siegmund and Alwyn Mellor’s Sieglinde –glorious, the pair of them, their erotic rapture, heroism and guilt all entirely credible.”

The Guardian

 

“Alwyn Mellor's conscience-wracked Sieglinde was never better than when wallowing in self-revulsion, but was not afraid to cut down her tine and was the mist animated of the cast."

Opera

 

Alwyn Mellor made a fine Sieglinde, with a focused, well-rounded and powerful voice with excellent diction. Her long and high notes were particularly impressive; ringing yet commanding.”

Opera Britannia

 

“…I was very taken with the Siegmund…It was even more satisfying to hear Alwyn Mellor’s Sieglinde and discover how she has become even better than as Isolde last summer at Grange Park. Her opening exchanges showed that her lower registers have taken on more warmth and fullness: she now seems to ease her voice into her vocal lines instead of kick-starting it, and her vibrato seems to have taken on a new meaning. Vibrato – such a strange subject. Alwyn Mellor’s is quite an entity, but it seems to colour what she sings with expressive intensity and never to undermine the pitch…”

Wagner News

 

“No quibbles, though, about the Sieglinde of Alwyn Mellor, who gave the most three-dimensional performance, with a warm tone, tender pianissimo, and emotional gestures that really made her character come alive.”

The Times

 

“With movement at a minimum, vocal characterisation is all-important. Erik Nelson Werner (Siegmund) and Alwyn Mellor (Sieglinde), after a restrained start, communicate with real ardour, even when singing out from opposite sides of the stage, he rather more lyrical than the typical Heldentenor, she exhibiting fearless control and a deepening emotional range.”

Whats On Stage

 

“Musically it was an unqualified success, nowhere more so than in the debut performance of Sieglinde from Alwyn Mellor, her large, radiant and perfectly focused voice, responding to the nuances of every word.”

Yorkshire Post

 

Wagner Concerts / Boston Philharmonic

"Alwyn Mellor sang with emotional commitment, ample power, and a tone of dark beauty."

Boston Globe

 

"Much has been made of Mellor’s potential as the future of Wagnerian soprano singing, and her performance on Wednesday evening proves that her instrument is well suited to the task. Her voice is round, full, lush and warmer perhaps than the kind of sound traditionally associated with this repertoire - as Brünnhilde she delivered her command “Fliegt heim, ihr Raben!” with every bit of the electrifying power one expects from Wagner’s greatest heroine."

Boston Musical Intelligencer

 

Bronwen Jones: Carbon 12 / Welsh National Opera

“…vividly characterised and sung by Alwyn Mellor…”

Music Web International

 

“Jason Howard sang the role of John Jones with noble passion…while Alwyn Mellor’s portrayal of Bronwen was equally fiery.”

Opera

 

Christmas Gala / Ten Tors Orchestra

“But the absolute jewel in the crown came from guest soprano, Alwyn Mellor, in favourite arias from Dvorak, Puccini, Catalani, Bizet and Lehar. Rarely have we heard a voice of such supreme quality, delivered in such an unassuming yet totally engaging fashion.”

Thisis Plymouth

 

German Romantic Evening / Longborough Festival Opera

“His Sieglinde, soon to be revealed as his long-lost twin sister as they hurtle into an incestuous relationship, was poignantly sung by Alwyn Mellor, her immersion in this wonderful music conveying the part beautifully…her Leonore in Fidelio had been simply stunning.”

Birmingham Post

 

Speight Celebration / Seattle Opera

“…Mellor’s very fine Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde…”

Seattle Times



DISCOGRAPHY

Sullivan The Yeomen of the Guard (role of Elsie Maynard)
with Pamela Helen Stephen, Felicity Palmer, Neill Archer, Donald Adams, Peter Savidge, Richard Suart, Donald Maxwell
Chorus and Orchestra of Welsh National Opera / Sir Charles Mackerras
Telarc CD 80404

Wagner Der Ring des Nibelungen (role of Brünnhilde)
Margaret Jane Wray, Stephanie Blythe, Stefan Vinke, Stuart Skelton, Greer Grimsley, Daniel Sumegi
Seattle Symphony Orchestra / Asher Fisch
Avie CD AV 2313