Anne Sofie von Otter
Mezzo-soprano

“She possesses one of the most flexible and natural vocal instruments of any living artist.” (Opera Now)

Contacts

Shirley Thomson +44 (0)20 3725 9173
Christopher Lawson +44 (0)20 3725 9108

Biography

Grammy award-winning mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter is one of today's most recorded artists with an unrivalled discography built across a career spanning more than three decades at the very top of her profession. A lengthy and exclusive relationship with Deutsche Grammophon produced a wealth of acclaimed recordings and her double CD, Douce France, on naïve received a Grammy Award in 2015 for Best Classical Solo Vocal Album.  

A busy concert schedule takes Anne Sofie to all corners of the globe where she appears with the world’s leading conductors and orchestras. An ever-evolving repertoire has played a key role in sustaining Anne Sofie's international reputation as an operatic force.  

Grammy award-winning mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter is one of today's most recorded artists with an unrivalled discography built across a career spanning more than three decades at the very top of her profession. A lengthy and exclusive relationship with Deutsche Grammophon produced a wealth of acclaimed recordings and her double CD, Douce France, on naïve received a Grammy Award in 2015 for Best Classical Solo Vocal Album.  

A busy concert schedule takes Anne Sofie to all corners of the globe where she appears with the world’s leading conductors and orchestras. An ever-evolving repertoire has played a key role in sustaining Anne Sofie's international reputation as an operatic force.  

This season Anne Sofie von Otter continues her collaboration with trailblazing string quartet, Brooklyn Rider, presenting music from their naïve recording ‘So many things’. Other season highlights include: Mme de Croissy (Dialogues des Carmelites) at Théâtre des Champs-Élysées; she creates the leading role in the world premiere of Sebastian Fagerlund's  Höstsonaten based on the iconic Ingmar Bergman film; and she collaborates with Barrie Kosky and Komische Oper Berlin on a special project with the title “Ich wollt ich wär ein Huhn”.

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Contacts

Shirley Thomson +44 (0)20 3725 9173
Christopher Lawson +44 (0)20 3725 9108

Reviews

“Anne Sofie von Otter makes her Finnish National Opera debut in the role of the lauded pianist Charlotte, a grand ‘artiste’ with little ability to empathise with the struggling daughters she visits for the first time in seven years…von Otter plays the aloof diva with total conviction” (Gramophone, November 2017)

“Here is another addition to the flood of high-calibre Sibelius recordings prompted by the composer’s 150th anniversary… Aulis Sallinen picked eight of Sibelius’s songs and reworked the piano parts for orchestra. The voice he had in mind was Anne Sofie von Otter’s and she sings them beautifully here. Sallinen strikes a skilful balance between a dark, typically Sibelian soundworld and something supportive of von Otter’s mezzo-soprano, with its easy poise and natural flow” (The Guardian, November 2017)

“With her aristocratic demeanour and her ability to express a great range of conflicting emotions, von Otter was perfectly cast as Charlotte, her commitment to the role complete.” (Opera Magazine, November 2017)

“Anne Sofie von Otter makes her Finnish National Opera debut in the role of the lauded pianist Charlotte, a grand ‘artiste’ with little ability to empathise with the struggling daughters she visits for the first time in seven years…von Otter plays the aloof diva with total conviction” (Gramophone, November 2017)

“Here is another addition to the flood of high-calibre Sibelius recordings prompted by the composer’s 150th anniversary… Aulis Sallinen picked eight of Sibelius’s songs and reworked the piano parts for orchestra. The voice he had in mind was Anne Sofie von Otter’s and she sings them beautifully here. Sallinen strikes a skilful balance between a dark, typically Sibelian soundworld and something supportive of von Otter’s mezzo-soprano, with its easy poise and natural flow” (The Guardian, November 2017)

“With her aristocratic demeanour and her ability to express a great range of conflicting emotions, von Otter was perfectly cast as Charlotte, her commitment to the role complete.” (Opera Magazine, November 2017)

“Anne Sofie von Otter creates the role of Charlotte, the mother, in a characterisation that relies as much on the Swedish mezzo-soprano’s own star aura as on her remarkably versatile voice.” ***** (Financial Times, September 2017)

“Anne Sofie von Otter beguiled as the ailing Leonora, addicted to various substances” (Fiona Maddocks, Guardian, May 2017)

“Anne Sofie von Otter made a moving, repressed Countess Geschwitz, singing with considerable heft as well as her trademark class.” (Hugo Shirley, Opera Magazine, May 2017)

“All praise to a superbly integrated cast – Anne Sofie von Otter among its brightest stars” (Rupert Christiansen, Telegraph, April 2017)

“Anne Sofie von Otter brings bags of character to the ailing Leonora” (The Stage, April 2017)

“Anne Sofie von Otter – on searing vocal form – portrayed Countess Geschwitz with brooding intensity, a woman with a quiet obsession and constantly snatching sorrowful glances at the object of her infatuation.” (Bachtrack, February 2017)

“The best thing about this eclectic recital is Anne Sofie von Otter’s handsomely rich voice…Highlights include Shaw’s “Cant voi l’aube”, setting a 12th century French love poem to music of rare beauty and delicacy. Otter’s delivery is superb, reaching feverish heights in the final verse…Von Otter’s immaculate French is heard to advantage in the closing aria from Rufus Wainwright’s opera Prima Donna, and there’s a beguiling extract from John Adams’ Doctor Atomic. Best among the cover versions in a sultry version of “Love Sublime” by Brad Mehldau.” (The Arts Desk, November 2016)

“Not every singer could bring this off. You need one who can approach all music without prejudice, preconceptions or star mannerisms and simply communicate through song — a rare gift. Von Otter has honed the art of singing to such a point that she is purely expressive, no matter what she’s singing. Hers is not a powerhouse voice, but this only furthers her artistry. She can be brassy (in an ABBA encore, “Gimme Gimme Gimme”), she can be straightforward or she can be purely, limpidly beautiful, as she was in Anders Hillborg’s “Kväll,” lyrically accompanied by Johnny Gandelsman on solo violin, and in Caroline Shaw’s “Cant voi l’aube,” a luminous setting of a 12th-century troubadour text that was one of the evening’s standouts.” (Washington Post, October 2016)

“Anne Sofie von Otter stood out for her portrayal of Leonora, a tragic, desperate patient of the Doctor” (Opera Magazine, October 2016)

“The mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter, singing with richness and vulnerability, plays Leonora” (New York Times, August 2016)

“The singers were more than fine; stand outs included Anne Sofie von Otter as a nuanced Leonora” (Frankfurter Rundschau, August 2016)

“Making these characters convincing required power and consistent vocal presence, which was especially apparent from Anne Sofie von Otter as senile Leonora” (Opernnetz, August 2016)

“the male trio fawn over von Otter who dazzles every second, with every prominent gesture, as the central figure for the evening. From barmaid to glamorous vamp, from Dowland to Elvis Costello and everything in between, she slips into the various roles and falls right back out of them again with ease” (Die Presse, June 2016)

“The performance was driven primarily by the great artist and legendary mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter…vocally, she is the absolute central power of the production. She sings with unmatched dedication and is perfect as the object of ultimate desire.” (Kurier, June 2016)

“Anne Sofie von Otter’s Jenny…[is] a classy number as one would expect from this imaginative performer.” (Opera Critic, January 2016)

“Anne Sofie von Otter’s Muse/Nicklausse, [is] a role she can still deliver with plenty of lissom tone” (Opera Magazine, December 2015)

“Anne Sofie von Otter is not the overripe contralto battleaxe one might usually cast as Leokadja Begbick but, resplendent in a platinum-blonde, hot-pink-dip-dyed wig, she gave a memorable performance on her own terms, singing with point and delivering her spoken lines in a tone-perfect Estuary accent.” (Opera Magazine, May 2015)

“Anne Sofie von Otter is a memorable Leokadja Begbick, strutting and commanding the stage, singing with eerie beauty. Always a treat when singing” (Backtrack, March 2015)

“von Otter has a beautiful voice and, as the evil widow Begbick, joyously attacks her lines with bitingly vicious phrasing” (Londonist, March 2015)

“Anne Sofie von Otter sings and struts splendidly as the widow Begbick whose brothel-keeping skills more or less run the town” (Express, March 2015)

“Anne Sofie von Otter brought a natural vocal ease and willowy presence to the glamorous actress Clairon.” (Chicago Classical Review, October 2014)

“Von Otter delivers both versions with scrupulous attention to the words and a sultry tone. Every rhetorical device is skilfully explored, every phrase glows, whether blithely (La Calisto), or with suppressed violence (Poppea)... For many listeners, however, von Otter's duets with Sandrine Piau will be the highlight. Stylistically, temperamentally and in terms of timbre, the two voices are a sensational match. Rarely have 'Pur ti miro' or 'Dolcissimi baci' sounded so erotic.” (Anna Picard, BBC Music Magazine, January 2013)

“The mezzos are out in force this autumn - Bartoli, Kozena, Graham, Garanca ...but this programme of 17th century Italian opera from Von Otter is perhaps the most remarkable of the lot. ... Her still plush mezzo entwines ravishingly with Sandrine Piau's brighter soprano, but the most remarkable parts of her "baroque dream" are Rossi's Lament of the Swedish Queen and Provenzale's astonishing parody of it.” (The Sunday Times, October 2012)

“What a treat Anne Sofie von Otter proved to be, too. Frequently, Brangäne can descend into a hectoring and boring spinsterish part, but von Otter, in powerful voice, was sympathetic.” (Classical Source, October 2010)

“Von Otter was the focus of the first concert, wringing emotion from each syllable of lyrics that sounded life-changing when she sang them. Mehldau impressed for adjusting touch and timbre for first-half readings of Brahms, Faure and Richard strauss, and bringing out the influence on jazz pianists today of Sibelius's sparse rhythmic pedals.” (Financial Times, June 2010)

“Ms. Von Otter's performance was the picture of interpretive subtlety, with carefully calibrated dynamics and coloration and a velvety tone that perfectly suited these graceful world-weary texts.” (The New York Times, October 2009)