Live review: Albert Herring (Opera Australia) – Classical Music – Limelight Magazine.
Attached is a link to the full review in Limelight Magazine for the new, Albert Herring at Opera Australia. The originally cast Albert, Tenor, Kanen Breen unfortunately had to cancel due to an infection and Brad, with little rehearsal, jumped in and not only saved the day but gave a stunning performance. I hope Kanen recovers quickly. Sad to for Kanen’s wife, the lovely mezzo who was to sing Lady Billows, Jacqueline Dark, who was a Tait Trust Awardee in 2001, who was also struck low by the same virus
“The cast are, without exception, on excellent vocal form, and several can be singled out, but the laurels on opening night were most definitely won by Brad Cooper in the title role. Albert is a tricky part, an avowed ‘simple soul’, it’s important to understand what that means in a more sensitive age. Given his adeptness at maths and sharpness of mind, nowadays we would probably have him down as a mild case of Aspergers. Cooper is totally convincing – both as a young man and as one coming to terms with the complex and frustrating sexual side of his character in an entirely closed society. The relationship with his mother and his burgeoning feelings for his best friend’s girl are delightfully explored. He captures better than anyone I’ve seen previously in the role the sense of Albert as outsider – his first monologue relating him firmly to characters like Grimes and Paul Bunyan’s Johnny Inkslinger. He also proves vocally ideal, exhibiting a perfect ‘light’ Britten tenor and bearing comparison with the likes of Bostridge, Padmore and Gilchrist. He is equally capable of a hushed pianissimo and a ringing forte and every word is clean and audible. His drunk scene was exemplary, pacier than is sometimes the case, and genuinely touching. A most auspicious debut.” By Clive Paget on Aug 17, 2013