The beginning of a new year inevitably prompts a reflection of the one just past and to that end several performances featuring Rayfield Allied artists have been recognised by critics as being some of the top classical musical events of 2013.
The Observer’s ‘Best Classical Music of 2013’ features a selection of the ‘Top 10’ performances of last year, with Aldeburgh’s groundbreaking Grimes on the Beach, NI Opera’s production of The Flying Dutchman, and Longborough’s Ring Cycle in first, second and fifth place respectively. Each artist from Rayfield Allied who sang in these productions received much critical acclaim at the time: Gaynor Keeble’s much-lauded Auntie was praised for her “rich tone and feisty spirit” (Opera Today) and was a “far cry from the raddled old character mezzo usually cast in the role” (The Sunday Times); Adrian Dwyer, whose “bright machismo Steersman deserves to be seen for more than two performances” (The Independent), “made a potent contribution” (The Sunday Times); and Eddie Wade - whose “sharply sung and characterised” (The Observer) performance of the role of Gunther in Götterdämmerung – was hailed as “outstanding” (The Sunday Times) and “strongly defined” (The Telegraph).
Meanwhile The Evening Standard’s ‘Best London Opera and Classical Concerts of 2013’ chooses two further performances featuring Rayfield Allied artists for their ‘Top 12’. Music Theatre Wales’s production of Salvatore Sciarrino’s opera The Killing Flower saw William Towers’ “fine countertenor” (The Times) give an “enraptured” performance as Guest; and the Royal Opera House’s new production of Parsifal, directed by Stephen Langridge, designed by Alison Chitty and featuring an “authoritative” (The Observer) and “magnificently sung” (The Financial Times) Gurnemanz in the form of René Pape was deemed a “triumph” (The Financial Times).