in Prokofiev's The Fiery Angel
A new production at Opernhaus Zürich directed by Calixto Bieito, conducted by Gianandrea Noseda
"Leigh Melrose, the emergent specialist of 20th century opera, is a chillingly barbarous Ruprecht crushed by unfulfilled lust."
Financial Times, 10th May 2017
"the two leads were remarkable for their vocal as well as acting prowess... Leigh Melrose, did tremendous work as Ruprecht, alternating between brooding intensity and clutching earnestness, consumed to the point of masochism by his hopeless passion."
Bachtrack, 12th May 2017
"Nicht minder beeindruckend ist der Ruprecht des Engländers Leigh Melrose: Mit seinem facettenreichen Bariton gestaltet er die Rolle des immer wieder zurückgewiesenen und doch hoffnungslos abhängigen Liebhabers ausgezeichnet."
Neue Zürcher Zeitung, 9th May 2017
"Leigh Melrose ist ideal besetzt für diesen Mann... Sein markanter, sauber und kraftvoll geführter Bariton vermag dabei genauso zu überzeugen wie seine Darstellung, welche die ganze Palette männlichen Verhaltens vom Macho im verschwitzten Unterhemd (wie Marlon Brando in ENDSTATION SEHNSUCHT) bis zum hündisch ergebenen Maso ausbreitet"
oper-aktuell, 7th May 2017
Wagner's Das Rheingold at the Ruhrtriennale
A new production by Johan Simons
conducted by Teodor Currentzis
"Ein Leidender, ein Cooler, ein Beschissener: Leigh Melrose ist das eigentliche Herzstück vom "Rheingold"
Alberich macht alles wieder gut. Leigh Melrose macht aus dem Nibelung die einzige tatsächliche Figur, geborsten, irre, ein Michael Fassbender in Nibelheim, man bedauert ernsthaft, dass er so lange verschwunden ist, während man den Göttern zuschaut."
Der Welt, 13th September 2015
"Unter den Sangern ragt Leigh Melrose als Alberich ob seines eindringlich demonstrierten bosartigen Irrsinns heraus."
Frankfurter Rundschau, 14th September 2015
"Aus der Schar der Sänger-Darsteller ragt stimmlich... Leigh Melroses Alberich, der Wagners Diktum des von der Sprache gesteuerten Gesangs geradezu exemplarisch"
www.nachtkritik.de, 14th September 2015
in Willie Decker's production of
Death in Venice
at Teatro Real, Madrid
A cambio, impresionó el barítono Leigh Melrose en su catálogo camaleónico de personajes, subrayando la calidad de un montaje con el que Joan Matabosch imprime carácter a su era como director artistico del Teatro Real.
Ruben Amon El Mundo, 5th December 2014
Leigh Melrose encarna a todas esas voces del mundo interior del escritor que le impulsan a dejarse llevar a la ciudad italiana, a rendirse a los placeres, y después a una playa del Lido que supondrá un punto de inflexión en el que alcanzará un amor supremo y prohibido que le conducirá a la vergüenza y a su último aliento sobre la arena.
Miguel Perez Martin El Pais, 5th December 2014
Heroico es también el papel del baritono Leigh Melrose, que se canta siete u ocho papeles. Melrose es una fuerza de la naturaleza como cantante y como actor.
Alvaro Guibert www.elcultural.es/ 10th December 2014
"Musically, it's astonishing. Melrose, giving the performance of a lifetime, charts Wozzeck's disintegration with unflinching veracity and an extraordinary expressive range that veers from lyrical intensity to snarl or eerie falsetto"
"It's hard watching Leigh Melrose as Wozzeck, a broken man shuffling from one abuse to another, fixated only on providing for Marie and his son in troubled times. That's the other thing this opera is about - poverty and what it does to people. And the way Melrose conveys the hopelessness of uncontrollable torment through the huge dynamic range of his vocal performance is both thrilling and deeply upsetting. It may be the performance of his life."
"But Leigh Melrose has done nothing better than this Wozzeck, never overplaying his doltishness and singing throughout with clarity and musicality"
Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, May 2013
Tim Ashley, The Guardian, May 2013
Edward Seckerson, The Arts Desk, May 2013
in Luca Francesconi's Quartett
"Kristin Chavez and Leigh Melrose give terrifically committed and skillful performances"
Rupert Christiansen The Telegraph, 19 June 2014
"It's not a joyous show, then, but in John Fulljames's intense production I found it engrossing, especially the interaction between two brilliant singer-actors: Kirstin Chavez as the dishevelled but still competitive Merteuil; Leigh Melrose, out-sneering even John Malkovich (if such is possible) as a posturing, sardonic Valmont who has clearly crossed into insanity and a nihilism born of an inability to love the one person who understands him."
Richard Morrison The Times, 19 June 2014
"The intensity of the performances by Kirstin Chavez and Leigh Melrose - claustrophobic, heady, unfiltered - depict a pair who are intimate enough to openly parade their most deplorable features. Melrose in particular enters the role with abandon and sings with great stamina."
Edward Bhesania The Stage, 19 June 2014
in Birtwistle's Gawain and the Green Knight with the BBCSO at the Barbican
"with Leigh Melrose incandescent in the title role..."
Anna Picard The Times, 19 May 2014
"Leigh Melrose was Gawain, charting his character's personal journey from cocksure innocence to pained experience very surely"
Andrew Clements The Guardian, 18 May 2014
"In a role he created John Tomlinson remains utterly peerless, but was matched by new-to-the-title-role Leigh Melrose, with just the right amount of bravado to start and emotionally shattered to end."
Nick Breckenfield classicalsource.com, 17 May 2014
News & Future Projects
Golaud at the Ruhrtriennale
"Die warme, unglaublich modulationsfähige Baritonstimme von Leigh Melrose verrät unterdrückte Aggression unter väterlicher Verantwortung..."
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 21st August 2017
"Leigh Melrose ist ein vor gestauter Gewalt bebender Golaud von imponierender Stimmkraft"
Stuttgarter Zeitung, 19th August 2017
"Der Rollendebütant Leigh Melrose hat stimmlich und darstellerisch das Potential, das hinter Golauds Zuneigung, Leidenschaft und dem Besitzanspruch genau die Unbeherrschtheit und latente Gewaltbereitschaft aufblitzen lässt, die ihn so bedrohlich düster und zum Leben untauglich macht, wie hier."
neue musikzeitung, 20th August 2017
This summer was a role debut as Golaud in a new production of Pelleas et Mélisande by Krzysztof Warlikowski at the Ruhrtriennale. Barbara Hannigan was Mélisande and it was conducted by Sylvain Cambreling. Further information can be found here.
"Advertised to London as a star vehicle for the baritone Christian Gerhaher, Wozzeck was instead a triumph of ensemble and nerve. Stepping in for Gerhaher at 24 hours’ notice, Leigh Melrose gave a sensational performance of the title role: tense, taut, harried and bullied by the random rattling interrogations of his superiors. If you’re going to be an outsider, this is the role to be an outsider in."
The Times, 5th October 2015
"In short, Melrose triumphed in a magnificently all-embracing portrayal in one of the most dramatic concert performances of an opera that I’ve experienced..."
Golaud comes back twice in the coming season: in a new production for Vlaamse Opera and Les Theatres de la Ville de Luxembourg, which features sets by prominent artist Marina Abramovic.
There is also a return to Teatro Real for their new productions of Britten Gloriana, staged by Sir David McVicar, and Zimmermann’s Die Soldaten directed by Calixto Bieito.
Further ahead there are role debuts at Teatro alla Scala and Wiener Staatsoper as well as returns for new productions at Dutch National Opera and Opernhaus Zürich. Details to follow!
"The loss of Gerhaher turned out to be no loss at all. Indeed, although I was certainly curious to hear what a voice of such beauty would have made of the role, I cannot believe that the dramatic achievement of Leigh Melrose’s portrayal could possibly have been superseded. Melrose’s Wozzeck in English remains unforgettable, like much else from ENO’s brilliant Carrie Cracknell production. Here, he showed that, in the original language, his match of verbal and musical acuity with first-class acting – yes, although this was a ‘concert’ performance, much of what we saw as well as heard was in character – could, if anything, penetrate still deeper. Much nonsense has been spoken, probably more often written, about Fischer-Dieskau’s allegedly too ‘intellectual’ assumption of the role. One needs a mind to be able to understand and to communicate the darkest, most profound reaches of Berg’s – and of Wozzeck’s. This Wozzeck was as thoughtful and as sensitive as he was downtrodden and, ultimately, angered."
Jumping in as Wozzeck at the Royal Festival Hall & Zürich Opera
Copyright 2017 Melrose Tynan Ltd