Allyson McHardy mezzo-soprano In the Press
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Popera  
Opera Ontario

What a warm, beautiful and agile voice McHardy possesses, and what a range, so beautifylly displayed in Una voce poco fa and Ombra mai fu from Handel's Xerxes-better known as Largo-and the exquisite My Heart at Thy Sweet Voice from Samson and Delilah.
-  Harry Curry, Kitchener-Waterloo Record, Nov 28, 2005


A Midsummer Night's Dream  Hermia
Chicago Opera Theater

Allyson McHardy's dusky, velvety mezzo gave Hermia depth and character...
-  Heidi Waleson, Wall Street Journal, May 24, 2005


An Evening in Paris  
Manitoba Opera

Everybody's favourite femme fatale, Carmen, also made an appearance a la mezzo soprano Allyson McHardy, in Bizet's Cuban-inspired Habanera. Appropriately coquettish, McHardy's sense of drama and temperamental flair was exactly right.
-  Holly Harris, Winnipeg Free Press, February 27, 2005


Off Centre Recital  

McHardy has a particularly large and rich instrument, with gorgeous low notes and much expressivity.
-  John Terauds, Toronto Star, February 14, 2005


Eugene Onegin  Olga
San Francisco Opera

Mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy, a rich-toned and thoughtful graduate of the Merola Opera Program, made an impressive debut as Tatyana's sister, Olga.
-  Joshua Kosman, San Francisco Chronicle, November 26, 2004


Schwabacher Debut Recital
San Francisco Opera

Sunday's wondrous recital by mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy... was just the sort of event that shows the San Francisco Opera Center's series at its best: an exciting introduction to a hugely gifted young singer, with the promise of future boasting rights for anyone able to say we heard her when...

...[she] is a mezzo of the old school who combines vocal endowments, artistic cunning and theatrical panache in roughly equal measures. If her future holds anything but stardom, I'll be very much surprised...

McHardy proved herself a dazzling artist and entertainer... She has an opulent, throaty tone whose darkly hooded quality seems to imply as much as it reveals, yet she had no trouble at all conjuring up reserves of power in her upper register. The high climatic phrase of 'Zueignung' was as thrilling as the vertiginous drop to her chest register that immediately followed it. And in the Schumann cycle she proved a master at gauging the emotional tenor of each song and translating it into vocal terms...

She invested 'Die Stille' ('Silence') with plenty of light-footed charm - in another life McHardy could be a killer leading lady in operetta... she came out victorious...
-  Joshua Kosman, San Francisco Chronicle, January 27, 2004


L'Heure Espagnole  Concepcione
Tanglewood Music Centre

In L'Heure Espagnole... Allyson McHardy reminded us of the great Spanish mezzos who have claimed the role.
-  Richard Dyer, Boston Herald, July 26, 2001

Ariodante  Polinesso
Opera in Concert (Toronto)

McHardy was expressively mean and bold, inhabiting her part with a brash vigour that suited her ripe, lusty sound...
-  Geoff Chapman, Toronto Star, April 2, 2001

McHardy's rich mezzo-soprano and dominatrix-style sexiness, made it easy to understand how Polinesso could ensnare Dalinda.
-  Tamara Bernstein, National Post, April 2, 2001

Rags to Riches: One hundred years of American Song
with pianist Steven Blier
Schwabacher Debut Recital Series, San Francisco Opera Center

The Canadian artist [Allyson McHardy] invested Ives' "Tom Sails Away" with polish and aching nostalgia for the boy who went to war. She returned to dispatch "Nickel Under the Foot," the prostitute's song from Marc Blitzstein's Weillesque "Cradle Will Rock" with a world weary sophistication and an idiomatic attack; no feeling of slumming here.
-  Allan Ulrich, San Francisco Chronicle, February 20, 2001

Madama Butterfly  Suzuki
Canadian Opera Company

As Butterfly's companion, Suzuki, the Canadian mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy was first rate, both vocally and dramatically...
-  Ken Winters, Globe and Mail, March 31, 2003

Falstaff  Meg Page
Tanglewood Music Centre

The role of Meg Page can vanish into the ensemble textures, but the anchored mezzo-soprano of Allyson McHardy gave consistent pleasure; she was as cherishable in this part as her Tanglewood-trained predecessor, Mildred Miller, back in Bernstein's day.
-  Richard Dyer, Boston Globe, August 1, 2000

Allyson McHardy was a particularly warm, witty Meg...
-  Leighton Kerner, Opera News, November 2000

Bach Cantata 146
K-W Philharmonic Chamber Singers

The alto aria was sung by Allyson McHardy, whose rich, warm sound alone was worth the price of admission. McHardy delicately phrased and shaded, and while she paid careful attention to detail, she never sounded forced or pedantic. This was a rare treat, and one that was all too short.
-   Harry Currie, Kitchener Waterloo Record , March, 1999

L'Italiana in Algeri  Isabella
San Francisco Opera's Merola Program

Several of these singers were eminently worth hearing. Chief among them was Canadian mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy, who gave a delightful performance in the title role of Isabella....her singing was warm and forthright, her command of coloratura fearless and her stage demeanor never less than charismatic. She is a singer to watch.
-  Joshua Kosman, San Francisco Chronicle , August 2, 1999

She's a real stage creature, dark, slender, physically expressive and loaded with smoldering personality.
-  Stephanie von Buchau, Pacific Sun, (San Francisco) August 1999

McHardy, in fact, held much within the embrace of her vocal instrument, including both comedy and - in an Act II aria where Rossini seems to predate by several decades the sombre grandeur of his countryman Verdi- some darker qualities which hint at the young singer's probable success with tragedy. She's also blessed with a sparkly sexy allure, evoking a young Mary Tyler Moore and making it entirely credible that she'd be persued ardently by three suitors.
-  Jeff Kallis, Commuter Times (San Francisco) August 1999

Die Kr�g der Poppea  Ottavia
Kammeroper Schlo�Rehinsberg

Allyson McHardy's passionate mezzo rendered impressively the distress of the suffering, deceived Empress Ottavia.
-  Peter Buske, Berliner Morgenpost, August 1998

Concert performance with Kammeroper Schlo�Rehinsberg

A further high point of the evening was undoubtedly the mezzo soprano Allyson McHardy. She sang the difficult part of Dalila by Saint-S�s with an unusually warm, voluminous voice. The audience expressed its appreciation with applause that lasted for several minutes and shouts of brava.
-  Jeannette Lehmann, Granseer Tageblatt, August 1998

La Calisto (Cavalli)  Juno
Canadian Opera Company

Allyson McHardy's vengeful goddess managed to be both hilarious and alarming, and even, by her exit, rather poignant.
-  Urjo Kareda, Globe and Mail (Toronto), May 7, 1996

Mad for All Reasons
Queen of Puddings Music Theatre Company (Toronto)

McHardy gave a brilliant performance, improvising passionate Italianate- sounding gibberish in a strange counterpoint to the instrumentalists' cabaret music.
-  Tamara Bernstein, Globe and Mail, May 7, 1996