Tenor Soloist in DAS LIED VON DER ERDE

Los Angeles Philharmonic

“Russell Thomas sang with robust presence, and the last phrase, a delicate pianissimo, was a telling indication of the singer’s enormous dramatic range.”
–Douglas Dutton, Seen and Heard International

“Thomas had no trouble hanging onto the notoriously treacherous tightrope line of “Das Trinklied.” Even situated behind the orchestra and the scrim, while being asked to act as he sang, he could be heard over the massive orchestral onslaught in front of him; the strain that seems to be practically built into the part just melted away.”
–Richard S. Ginell, Classical Voice North America

“Both tenor and mezzo parts are notoriously difficult in range, expression and duration. Thomas and Mumford excelled in all areas. Thomas sang the stentorian parts with a thrilling tenor that almost always equaled the volume of Dudamel’s exuberant band. It is an acrobatic part and Thomas hit all the marks with thrilling high notes and impressive line. There is little room for dynamic nuance in the part and where there was, Thomas opted for vocal heft instead with thrilling results.”
–Matthew Richard Martinez, Bachtrack

“The hint of bitterly heroic despair gave Thomas’s interpretation such an individual touch…”
–Thomas May, Musical America

“The American tenor was a forceful presence in recent seasons when he starred in L.A. Opera’s Norma at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and in Dudamel and L.A. Phil’s concert performance of Tosca at the Hollywood Bowl, and he was typically strong at Disney Hall on Thursday.”
–Falling James, LA Weekly

“At the root of the experience was the sensuality of Dudamel’s interpretation, the superbly crafted musicianship of the orchestra and the excellent vocal styling of the two soloists: tenor Russell Thomas and mezzo-soprano Tamara Mumford. The digital stagecraft that made it possible to insert the two singers into a swirling visual cosmology was dazzling, [as was]Thomas declaim[ing] in his heroically scaled tenor voice…”
–Jim Farber, San Francisco Classical Voice

“Apart from singing their music, the tenor Russell Thomas and the mezzo Tamara Mumford interacted with the projections, precise in their movements as movie actors against a green screen. Up front beside the conductor, Russell Thomas swept through the tenor solos with tremendous authority, revealing the moods of his songs in all their layered complexity, from joy tinged with gloomy defiance to devil-may-care Falstaffian abandon [with] his muscular phrasing, burnished colors, and forceful projection…”
–Matthew Gurewitsch, Oper! Das Magazin

Beth Stewart17/18