Ariana Strahl in the exquisite “Libera me”[...] Strahl’s radiant, opulent soprano provided the ideal proportion for this large-scaled production, yet with her commanding vocal power came the finesse of subtle phrasing and intimate gesture when the composer required such virtues.
From here on OSJ fans will keep their eyes and ears out for the radiant soprano Strahl, a fast-rising Berkeley resident who had spent two years at the Komische Oper in Berlin.
The casting is superb. Soprano Ariana Strahl possesses a wide-ranging voice that delivers Blanche’s more tender moments – like the Carlisle Floyd-like “Soft People” – but can also throw lightning bolts when needed, as in the final line (“One light!”) in her memory of a gay friend’s suicide. She matches this in the acting department, bringing as layered and nuanced a Blanche as I’ve ever seen, singing or nonsinging.Her account of the opera’s best-known set piece, “I want magic!,” is tender and gorgeous.
In the pivotal role of Blanche DuBois, Ariana Strahl was a real star presence. This is arguably one of the most complex roles in the English language theatrical canon, and Ms. Strahl did not shrink from its mighty challenges. She sings it beautifully, with a ringing soprano possessed of considerable beauty, assured technique, even production throughout the range, and consummate musicianship. Every move she made was motivated by the drama, and ably conveyed the script as musicalized by Mr. Previn. [...] Ms. Strahl is young, she is highly gifted and smart, attractive and empathetic, so there is no doubt she will grow into this part and fully discover its many facets. She deserves to have many more outings as Ms. DuBois.
Soprano Ariana Strahl also had a fine debut with the role of Blanche DuBois, and sang with a devastating brilliance and incredible ease. Her clarion tones were a wonderful contrast to Tappan’s, you could never mistake one for another. In the end the drama does come through in the music, Stahl portrays Blanche’s harrowing experiences with conviction...
But perhaps the standout role is Ariana Strahl as Blanche. Her powerful [...] voice is as delicate as it is glass-shattering. It is a high compliment to say that within minutes you have forgotten Brando, Leigh, Hunter and Malden’s iconic film portrayals.
Ariana Strahl, a California soprano with a powerful vocal instrument, as Blanche, is in a hellish free-fall from the opening scene of her arrival until the final humiliation of being taken away to a mental institution. She agrees to go because she’s always depended “on the kindness of strangers.”
Ariana Strahl (Fiordiligi) was the most compelling: her high notes carried easily, and seemed to float over the courtyard, and she maintained a beautiful sound in the often-feared low register. Her moving passages were especially successful.
The discovery of the evening was the beautiful American Ariana Strahl in the role of Kurfürstin Marie. This jubilant soprano surely has a great future ahead.
American soprano Ariana Strahl, who only made her professional debut in 2009, proved an impressive and sincere Fiordiligi, her voice clear and firm, her chest register strong, with fearless, accurate vocalism.
As Fiordiligi, Ariana Strahl sprung from bare musical execution into the drama with ease...
Ariana Strahl was especially enchanting as the Sandman/Dew Fairy...