Die Frau Ohne Schatten | Metropolitan Opera, New York | November 2013

“The cast was headed by the magisterial Anne Schwanewilms in her company debut…As the Empress, Ms. Schwanewilms brings a vocal refinement and dignity to her performance…her singing is warm and true. She spins high-lying phrases with focused sound and pliant lyricism.”

Anthony Tommasini, The New York Times, November 8, 2013

“From her opening monologue with its florid passagework to her final monologue in which she stops singing and speaks, Schwanewilms was a dominating presence on stage. Her voice is a massive one that showcased tremendous flexibility with Strauss’ coloratura passagework and monstrous leaps into the soprano stratosphere…The Empress has a big vocal break throughout Act 1 and most of Act 2, but Schwanewilms was still a powerful presence even when she was silent. She explored the Dyer’s house with tremendous curiosity that made it impossible to look away. Her concern for the broken marriage was visible on her face throughout most of Act 2….The third act belongs to the Empress as she sings non-stop and then has to deliver speech over Strausss’ cataclysmic orchestra.She delivered chillingly in these moments, the pain present in every utterance. There was no doubt that hers was a truly triumphant night.”  David Salazar, Latino Post, November 8, 2013

“The opening night performance was also notable for the excellent (and overdue) Met debut of Anne Schwanewilms as the Empress…The omnipresent Empress is important to the plot even when she has little singing. Schwanewilms brought elegance to the role, excelling in the coloratura-laden vocal line in the opening scene, allowing her affection and sympathy for Barak to grow convincingly, and singing with dramatic heft in the denouement.”

David M. Rice, The Classical Source, November 7, 2013