Photo: Catherine Ashmore

“Kristine Opolais moves with the grace of a ballerina, her Tosca every inch the superstar of the Roman stage. She is hilariously funny in her jealous teasing of her lover, Cavaradossi, and later than a match for Scarpia, who has played submissive games with women for so long that he cannot recognise one who will fight back.”

Broadway World

“Latvian soprano Kristine Opolais in the titular role has the right combination of melodrama and steeliness, with an agile and lucid voice. This is showcased in her thrilling aria Vissi d’Arte. In Act Two, having come off stage, Tosca wears a heavy glittering dress which she has to drag behind her, all her finery merely adding to the pathos of what will come.”

The Upcoming

“Kristine Opolais conveys Floria Tosca’s coquettishness and insecurity in Act One in a way that’s both familiar and touching, and then she makes Tosca’s diva status and courage entirely credible in the Second. Gesture and movement are high-octane drama-queen stuff and she makes it all compelling to see and hear. Best of all, as Tosca runs out of options, is the way in which Opolais distils the drama down to a ‘Vissi d’arte’ of great beauty – reminding you that it’s a miracle the opera is built on four big if brief solo numbers – and even greater insight into the strengths and vagaries of Tosca’s character. It helps that she looks stunning and regal.”

Classical Source

“…opening night belonged to the Latvian soprano Kristine Opolais, whose glamour, power and theatricality is captivating. She rips through the music balanced on a dagger’s blade between singing and exclamation, her cries of despair coming from the heart.”

Culture Whisper

“As Tosca, Kristine Opolais sang with huge sincerity, beautifully expressing her jealousy in Act I, and her anguish in Act II as Scarpia orders the further torture of her free-thinking lover, the painter Cavaradossi. Her vissi d’arte, telling how she has lived for art and love, before finally turning on him with a knife, was beautifully nuanced, with tempo changes mirrored perfectly in the orchestra under the excellent baton of Alexander Joel. “

The Article

“Kristine Opolais returns to the production after her 2013 appearance in the title role. The Latvian’s silvery timbre is distinctive and the voice sounds larger now… She looks every inch the diva and sang “Vissi d’arte” with admirable restraint: “All right, Mr Puccini, I’m ready for my close-up.” She played the jealousy card well in Act 1, teasing Vittorio Grigòlo’s puppyish Cavaradossi when instructing him to paint the Madonna’s eyes black to reflect her own. And sparks flew in her confrontation with Bryn Terfel’s thuggish Scarpia, taking a candlestick to him at one point, and stuck the knife in (twice) with relish.”

Bachtrack

“[Kristine Opolais] has clearly put a lot of thought into her traditional drama queen portrayal; her character was volatile yet clearly used to getting her own way … Tosca’s despairing ‘Visse d’arte’ was deeply felt and sung with refined musicality.”

Seen and Heard International