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  Baritones: Ben McAteer - Reviews

From The House of the Dead‚ Welsh National Opera
Opera Magazine (December 2017)

'The bonding of Ben McAteer’s Goryanchikov with Paula Greenwod’s Alyeya was touching‚ recalling Dostoyevsky’s experience of teaching while incarcerated in Siberia. '

From The House of the Dead‚ Welsh National Opera
Seen & Heard International (October 2017)

' As Goryanchikov‚ Ben McAteer has less to do and sing than one might have expected‚ given that the character’s experience‚ in a sense shapes the work‚ he is there as a political dissident‚ not as a thief and/or a murderer like most of the others‚ and the work begins with his entry into the prison and ends with his release from it; even so‚ McAteer made one warm to the character’s dignity and humanity‚ both in the way he resisted the taunts of some of the other prisoners and in the kindness of his treatment of Aleya.'

From The House of the Dead‚ Welsh National Opera
The Financial Times (October 2017)

'Outstanding among a consistently fine ensemble are Ben McAteer as Dostoyevsky’s representative‚ the resilient aristocrat Goryanchikov...'

From The House of the Dead‚ Welsh National Opera
The Telegraph (October 2017)

'But the ensemble cast is beyond reasonable criticism‚ not least for the uniform excellence of its enunciation of Pountney’s serviceable translation...while Adrian Thompson‚ Ben McAteer and Mark Le Brocq shine in lesser roles.'

From The House of the Dead‚ Welsh National Opera
What’s On Stage (October 2017)

'With immense contributions from‚ among many others‚ Ben McAteer...'

Die Fledermaus‚ Welsh National Opera
Opera Magazine (July 2017)

'Ben McAteer made a strong company debut as Dr Falke. '

Die Fledermaus‚ Welsh National Opera
Classical Source (June 2017)

'Ben McAteer is a dapper Dr Falke...'

The Marriage of Figaro‚ Scottish Opera (October 2016)

'Gravitas was finally achieved by Act IV in Figaro’s misogynistic aria “Aprite un po’ quegli occhi”‚ lit with almost gothic brilliance by a single white spotlight‚ and in Susanna’s “Deh vieni non tardar”. Indeed‚ Ben McAteer’s Figaro and‚ in particular‚ Anna Devin’s Susanna were the two stand-outs...'

Così Fan Tutte‚ West Green House Opera
MusicOMH (August 2016)

'Ben McAteer similarly reveals a firm and pleasing baritone and presents a strong portrayal of a Guglielmo who thinks rather too much of himself.'

Così Fan Tutte‚ West Green House Opera (July 2016)

'McAteer sang with a soft-grained baritone that was rarely forced and a well-honed tone.'

The Mikado‚ Scottish Opera (May 2016)

'Ben McAteer was a wonderfully camp Pish-Tush using semaphore to reveal his inner desires in “Our great Mikado‚ virtuous man”.'

The Mikado‚ Scottish Opera (May 2016)

'In an almost universally solid cast‚ a few stars shine bright:... Ben McAteer is a wonderfully witty Pish-Tush'

The Mikado‚ Scottish Opera
Opera Britannia (May 2016)

'Ben McAteer‚ fresh from Scottish Opera’s stunning recent new commission The Devil Inside‚ demonstrated that he could hold his own in a very different genre. Here he was an absurdly camp comic Pish-Tush who was considerably more funny than most absurdly camp comic turns usually are.'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera
Opera (March 2016)

'...the cast inhabited their roles with panache. Ben McAteer explored the Wotan-esque extremes of James'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera
Schmopera (March 2016)

'Ben McAteer (the John Mather Charitable Trust Scottish Opera Emerging Artist‚ 2015/16) was definitely the highlight of our night. He sang with a modern‚ contemporary sound that cut through the ample orchestra and over some extremely dramatic scoring for the pit. His range was astounding and the ease of production was inspiring.'

The Devil Inside‚ Peacock Theatre‚ Music Theatre Wales
Critics’ Circle (February 2016)

'Ben McAteer as James has a pleasing combination of warmth and solidity to his baritone'

The Devil Inside‚ Peacock Theatre‚ Music Theatre Wales
Mark (February 2016)

'Strongly convincing performances...baritone Ben McAteer as the steadier James who tries to find a way out their dilemma'

The Devil Inside‚ Peacock Theatre‚ Music Theatre Wales
Seen & Heard International (February 2016)

'All four members of the cast created their characters to equally fine effect; they sprang off the page into our mythical consciousness...Ben McAteer made James’s sorry descent utterly credible from beginning to end'

The Devil Inside‚ Peacock Theatre‚ Music Theatre Wales
The Reviewers Hub (February 2016)

'...crystal-clear diction of all the singers...Ben McAteer (James) and Nicholas Sharratt (Richard) are a well-balanced combination‚ McAteer singing and acting powerfully throughout'

The Devil Inside‚ Peacock Theatre‚ Music Theatre Wales
What’ (February 2016)

'Tenor Nicholas Sharratt and bass-baritone Ben McAteer are riveting as the hapless pair‚ neither of whom does well out of the Imp despite the material wealth it brings‚ while the excellent Steven Page bookends the opera in two pivotal roles'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera (February 2016)

'Ben McAteer (James) is a Scottish Opera Emerging Artist for 2015/16 and‚ on this performance‚ the accolade is justified. His love scenes with Catherine (Rachel Kelly) have warmth and sincerity. As he explains the wedding anniversary presents‚ or leaps to conclusions about what Catherine is trying to tell him‚ he engages our sympathy'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera (January 2016)

'Ben McAteer was James‚ the hapless first bottle buyer‚ using his riches to become a property magnate‚ his high baritone part expressing the range of initial wariness‚ delight and greed...there is not a weak link in this uniformly strong cast'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera
Financial Times (January 2016)

'MacRae’s vocal writing is less individual‚ but Scottish Opera’s well-chosen cast deliver it with clarity. Ben McAteer sings strongly as the opera’s central figure'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera
Guardian (January 2016)

'...baritone Ben McAteer is convincing as the steadier‚ less tormented James'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera
Observer on Sunday (January 2016)

'Surtitles are welcome but almost redundant since each of the four singers – Nicholas Sharratt‚ Ben McAteer (a Scottish Opera emerging artist)‚ Steven Page and Rachel Kelly – enunciate clearly. They also sing MacRae’s forgiving and conversational vocal style with rigour‚ and act well under the direction of Matthew Richardson'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera
Opera Britannia (January 2016)

'one of the most interesting‚ well sung and well produced pieces of opera that has been seen on the Scottish stage for quite a few years...James (Ben McAteer)...There’s nothing separating the two friends vocally. Each is strong‚ powerful and clear. This was a production when the surtitles seemed genuinely superfluous. The words are set incredibly well and though the score is complex and offers many challenges to the ear‚ the words shine through brilliantly throughout. The production seems a particular achievement for Ben McAteer as he is a Scottish Opera emerging artist 2015/16. This is a brilliant work to have under his belt. Like Sharratt‚ the strength of his singing was matched by his acting'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera
Seen & Heard International (January 2016)

'The singing cast never put a foot wrong throughout. Ben McAteer’s bluff baritone made James a sympathetic hero'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera
The List (January 2016)

'As Richard and James‚ Nicholas Sharratt and Ben McAteer are remarkable in how they convey what seems like life’s escalation in the fast track lane‚ but is really the complete opposite'

The Devil Inside‚ Scottish Opera
The Scotsman (January 2016)

'The cast is thoroughly consistent. The two male protagonists – Richard (Nicholas Sharratt) and James (Scottish Opera emerging artist‚ Ben McAteer) – are a potent match: Sharratt authoritative‚ and evoking Richard’s underlying common sense‚ in ever-increasing contrast to McAteer’s disturbing representation of the obsessive‚ unstable James'

Così Fan Tutte‚ Scottish Opera
Opera (December 2015)

'Of their male partners...Ben McAteer’s Guglielmo a stronger presence'

Così Fan Tutte‚ Scottish Opera
Guardian (September 2015)

'The boys – Trystan Llyr Griffiths and Ben McAteer as Ferrando and Guglielmo – sing brightly and stylishly'

The Magic Flute‚ Northern Ireland Opera
Opera (November 2014)

' enormously likable‚ robustly-sung performance from Newry-born baritone Ben McAteer...a natural comic actor with the bumbling‚ puppy-like demeanour of a youthful Oliver Hardy. His closing duet with Papagena was pure catharsis‚ the most simply joyful moment in the entire evening...a heartening and - yes - magical evening'

Madama Butterfly‚ Opera Holland Park (June 2013)

'Ben’s assumption of what is one of opera’s most difficult roles was an outstanding achievement for so young an artist – he made you feel all Sharpless’ decency and frustration'

Madama Butterfly‚ Opera Holland Park
Planet (June 2013)

'McAteer was a stiff yet sympathetic Sharpless‚ his performance emphasised the character’s youth and inhibition‚ combined with a finely sung baritone line. Sharpless isn’t a showy role‚ but McAteer impressed with the way he brought sympathy and musicality to the role‚ making me interested to learn what the singer can do in other roles'

Hansel & Gretel‚ Sinfonia d’Amichi
Classical (April 2013)

'All six solo singers delivered fully-rounded performances and sang with grace and individuality – and‚ in the case of Ben McAteer as Father‚ something more. This remarkable young baritone‚ who was runner-up at the 2012 Kathleen Ferrier of a calibre that bespeaks a great future'

Le nozze di Figaro‚ Guildhall School of Music & Drama
Classical (March 2013)

'Ben McAteer provided the most rounded account of any of the characters assigned to the singers. Initially he did not come across as an ogre on his first surreptitious advance to Susanna in her room in Act One‚ but rather as an imperfect human who is not in command of his passions and urges. Rightly this was not a reading about stark black and white moral opposites: there was nothing to suggest that somebody in Susanna’s position would automatically rebuff him out of horror or disgust. McAteer grew into an angrier and more forceful figure as Almaviva’s plans become increasingly thwarted‚ for instance when he tries to gain access to the Countess’s wardrobe in Act Two. In his reflective scena at the beginning of Act Three where the Count discloses more of his human foibles and flaws‚ McAteer remained outwardly and musically firm‚ conveying Almaviva’s frustrations and complexities. There was also a certain nobility at the denouement of the drama as he asked the Countess for forgiveness – in effect standing-in for all humanity in seeking remission for its shortcomings'

Le portrait de Manon‚ Guildhall School of Music & Drama
Bach (November 2012)

'One comes to events like these listening out for stars of the future‚ and several of the voices impressed...Ben McAteer sang fluently and passionately as Des Grieux'

Kathleen Ferrier Awards 2012
Opera (April 2012)

'I felt that McAteer’s communication of the text‚ as he effortlessly embodied a range of characters in different dramatic and emotional situations‚ put him in the running for first prize. Whether outpouring Romantic angst or relishing the ironic wit of Classicism‚ every word was crystal clear and every musical gesture perfectly matched to the sentiments of the text'

Kathleen Ferrier Awards 2012
Telegraph (April 2012)

'I would have handed the Song Prize to 24-year-old Ben McAteer‚ who showed a maturity of musicianship beyond his years. His immediate engagement with the text of Schumann’s ballad Belsazar was exemplary and he pitched wistful songs by Gurney and Harty just the right side of sentimentality. In arias from Eugene Onegin and Così fan tutte he was scarcely less impressive‚ singing with an engagingly understated ease and fluency. His tuning was immaculate‚ his tone focused. Another one to listen out for'

Kathleen Ferrier Awards 2012
The Times (April 2012)

'The Irish McAteer also deserved his own spotlight: with his attractive timbre and musical intelligence‚ he’s a singer of genuine potential'