Jonathan Best
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The Blind Man
Composer: Rachmaninov Other Artists: Tony Legge (piano) Date: 1999
06:43

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Jonathan Best was born in Kent and educated at St John’s College‚ Cambridge and at the Guildhall School of Music. He made his operatic debut in 1983 with the Welsh National Opera‚ and has since sung with all the major British Opera companies.

Recent and future plans include Bartolo The Marriage of Figaro (Opera North)‚ Lesbo Agrippina (The Grange Festival)‚ Father Traurnacht (Festival d’Aix en Provence in Arras and Lisbon)‚ Sarastro The Magic Flute‚ Benoit/Alcindoro La Boheme and Le Bailli Werther (Scottish Opera)‚ Judge Turpin Sweeney Todd (Théâtre du Châtelet‚ Paris and Münchner Rundfunkorchester)‚ Drunken Poet The Fairy Queen (in concert with the Handel and Haydn Society‚ Boston)‚ title role Saul (The Sixteen and Boston’s Handel & Haydn Society)‚ Capellio I Capuleti e i Montecchi‚ Don Fernando Leonore‚ Zebul Jephtha‚ Notary Intermezzo and Maître Jean La Colombe (Buxton Festival)‚ Don Alfonso Cosi fan tutte and Lord Henry The Picture of Dorian Gray (Den Jyske Opera)‚ Quince A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Speaker The Magic Flute (Garsington Opera)‚ 3rd Seller / Dignitary The Portrait and Achilla Giulio Cesare (Opera North)‚ Pastor Oberlin Jakob Lenz and Bartolo The Marriage of Figaro (English National Opera)‚ Sacristan/Lunarbore/Domšic The Adventures of Mr Broucek (Opera North/Scottish Opera)‚ Missa Solemnis (Gloucester Cathedral)‚ Arthur The Lighthouse‚ Narrator The Waste LandThe Soldier’s Tale and the world première of Sally Beamish’s The Sins (Psappha Quartet).

A regular guest with Opera North‚ roles have included Des Grieux Manon‚ Barbe-bleue Ariane et Barbe-bleue‚ Sparafucile Rigoletto‚ Don Alfonso Così fan tutte‚ Leporello Don Giovanni‚ Bottom A Midsummer Night’s Dream‚ Villabella The Thieving Magpie‚ Speaker The Magic Flute‚ Bishop Caritas‚ Sirocco L’étoile‚ King The Love for Three Oranges‚ Radcliffe Billy Budd‚ Bartolo The Marriage of Figaro and Rambaldo La rondine. Further appearances in the UK include Garibaldo Rodelinda‚ Zuniga Carmen‚ Alcindoro La Boheme‚ Valens Theodora and Kramer Tangier Tattoo (Glyndebourne)‚ Drunken Poet The Fairy Queen (ENO and at the BBC Proms)‚ the world premiere of Sir Peter Maxwell Davies’ opera Mr Emmet Takes a Walk (Psappha)‚ Don Alfonso (Grange Park Opera and Garsington)‚ Doctor Wozzeck and Rocco Fidelio with BOCO‚ Quince A Midsummer Night’s Dream (ROH‚ Covent Garden)‚ Saul‚ Ralph The Fair Maid of Perth‚ Walter Raleigh Roberto Devereux‚ Oscar Bluebeard‚ Pancratius The Poacher‚ Harapha Samson‚ Gubetta Lucrezia Borgia‚ Sancho Panza Die Hochzeit des Camacho‚ Don Cassandro La Finta Semplice and Don Annibale Il Campanello (all Buxton Festival)‚ Leone Tamerlano (Scottish Opera) and Foreman of the Mill Jenufa (Opera Holland Park).

Engagements abroad include Pitkin On the Town (Châtelet)‚ Don Pedro Béatrice et Bénèdict with Netherlands Opera‚ Valens in Strasbourg‚ King Ariodante‚ Zoroastro Orlando and Arkel Pelléas and Mélisande with Opera Theatre Company in Dublin‚ Drunken Poet in Barcelona‚ Antinoo Il Ritorno D’Ulisse in Patria for Teatro Sao Carlo‚ Lisbon‚ Father Trulove The Rake’s Progress in Israel and Count Robinson in Sir Jonathan Miller’s production of Il Matrimonio Segreto at The Brooklyn Academy of Music‚ USA‚ as well as appearances at the Salzburg Festival‚ Maggio Musicale-Florence and Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie.

He appears regularly in concert throughout the United Kingdom and abroad‚ has appeared at the Proms and has made many recordings for both television and radio. Appearances include The Fairy Queen with the Sixteen‚ Uberto La Serva Padrona with the Gabrieli Consort touring Norway‚ Mozart’s Requiem (Harrogate Choral Society and Cork)‚ Verdi Requiem and Christus St John Passion with the Bach Choir‚ Jesus St Matthew Passion in Sheffield and L’enfance du Christ with BOCO.

The Marriage of Figaro, The Grange Festival

Jonathan Best was in excellent voice as the morose Dr Bartolo…

Bachtrack (June 2019)

Jonathan Best’s lugubrious Bartolo completed as fine a ‘minor character’ cast as anyone could wish for.

MusicOMH (June 2019)

Old hands Jonathan Best and Richard Suart deliver closely observed character studies as Bartolo and Antonio respectively…

The Stage (June 2019)

Just as compelling are Jonathan Best’s sturdy Dr BartolO...

Opera Today (June 2019)

Agrippina‚ The Grange Festival

Jonathan Best – who can forget his ‘Fairy Queen’ Drunken Poet? added to his extensive list of character roles as Lesbo.

MusicOMH (June 2018)

La bohème‚ Scottish Opera

...and Jonathan Best entertained as Benoit and Alcindoro.

Opera Magazine (July 2017)

I Capuleti e i Montecchi‚ Buxton Festival

Jonathan Best’s Capellio was an uncompromising military leader whose ’principles’ led to him gutting his own daughter at the end‚ a neat way of reacting to the cry of "Da te‚ spietato!" in response to his "Uccisi! da chi?". His bass rolled cleanly over the orchestra‚ showing plenty of colour and a fine gravelly tone.

BachTrack (July 2016)

Jonathan Best was a wonderfully grim and severe Capellio‚ making the character’s monomaniacal focus on revenge really work‚ yet singing Bellini without distorting the music for emphasis.

Planet Hugill (July 2016)

Leonore‚ Buxton Festival

This was a strong cast... and Jonathan Best showing fine aplomb as the government minister Don Fernando...

Mark Ronan (July 2016)

Saul‚ Handel & Haydn Society

Baritone Jonathan Best sounded regal in the title role‚ and countertenor Iestyn Davies essayed a superb David. Both parts require a full range of expression‚ from assuredness to despair. Best seemed to me particularly powerful in the sequence of recitatives leading up to Saul’s attempt to murder his own son Jonathan at the end of Act 2.

Classical Scene (May 2016)

Samson‚ National Concert Hall Dublin

Best’s ease of projection and physically imposing stature gave conviction to these words from his aria “Though I could end thee at a blow”

BachTrack (January 2016)

...the commanding resonance of Jonathan Best in the bass role of Samson’s aggressor Harapha

GoldenPlec.com (January 2016)

Jonathan Best is the avenging Harapha

Irish Independent (January 2016)

The Marriage of Figaro‚ English National Opera

The cast was one of ENO’s strongest ensembles...There was a nicely fussy Bartolo from Jonathan Best

Opera Magazine (December 2014)

Lucy Schaufer‚ as Marcellina‚ and Jonathan Best as Dr Bartolo‚ make a good comic double

BachTrack (October 2014)

...other characters emerge with unusual vividness. Jonathan Best brings a stateliness to Doctor Bartolo which Lucy Schaufer as Marcellina plays off sparkily

The Independent (October 2014)

An excellent revenge aria by Jonathan Best as her employer and future husband Dr. Bartolo

Mark Ronan (October 2014)

Particularly amusing is the scene in which Bartolo and Marcellina realise they are Figaro’s parents

MusicOMH (October 2014)

Jonathan Best made an imposing Doctor Bartolo

Opera Britannia (October 2014)

The Waste Land‚ Psappha

The singer Jonathan Best‚ a truly outstanding narrator...together with Best’s effective fast pace here‚ made the “closing time” sequence more gripping than I’ve ever experienced it

The Sunday Times (March 2014)

La Colombe‚ Buxton Festival

The hit of the evening is the majordomo Jean’s aria about preparing a meal without any ingredients‚ yet another of the gems of characterization that the versatile Jonathan Best has sung at Buxton over the years

Opera Magazine (September 2013)

Maître Jean (played by Buxton favourite bass Jonathan Best)... Best‚ whose crystal-clear diction‚ intonation and warm colouring through the voice always make for pleasurable listening

BachTrack (July 2013)

The cast nevertheless give it their all...manfully supported by Emma Carrington as his mezzo male servant‚ as well as by Jonathan Best as the Countess’s butler

The Guardian (July 2013)

The highlight is an aria about cooking‚ sung by a majordomo (Jonathan Best) who has to prepare a meal in the absence of ingredients: Gounod’s admission‚ perhaps‚ that opera was a culinary art‚ pandering to the jaded palates of the Parisian bourgeoisie. I remembered‚ as I listened to Best’s gabbling patter‚ that Simon Callow once described Saint-Saëns as "the Escoffier of music"

Observer on Sunday (July 2013)

The whole production is splendidly played...Jonathan Best makes for a humorous butler

The Arts Desk (July 2013)

Good things too from Emma Carrington’s trousered servant Mazet and Jonathan Best’s Maître Jean‚ basilisk-eyed butler

The Times (July 2013)

Werther‚ Scottish Opera

Jonathan Best an affectionate Bailli

Opera Magazine (April 2013)

Jonathan Best is a kindly Bailli‚ educating his children and enjoying a quiet drink with his pals

The Opera Critic (March 2013)

Le Bailli‚ solidly sung by Jonathan Best

BachTrack (February 2013)

Jonathan Best had a nice patrician Bailli – father of all he surveyed

Opera Britannia (February 2013)

Jonathan Best makes a great deal of Charlotte’s widowed father

The Stage (February 2013)

Fairy Queen‚ Indian Queen‚ King Arthur‚ Handel & Haydn Society

There were other vocal pleasures: The dialogue between Fame‚ also sung by Wilder‚ and Envy‚ sung by British import Jonathan Best‚ featured colorful scene painting. When Best sings of snakes hissing‚ the music hisses‚ which Best‚ a wonderful character actor‚ makes vivid...In the “Scene of the Drunken Poet” from “The Fairy Queen‚” Best hilariously depicted the Drunken Poet (said to be a portrait of an actual poet of the day)‚ staggering down the aisle of Jordan Hall onto the stage‚ where he was tormented by two “Fairies‚” two choristers who wore stylish nightlife-type clothes. Best’s voice is deep and sonorous and remarkably flexible‚ and the two Fairies‚ sung by sopranos Margot Rood and Erika Vogel‚ had light and agile voices with clear high notes. I don’t think there was anyone in the house who wasn’t laughing...“The Frost Scene” from “King Arthur” wins the prize of the week for best scheduling. On a night that was one of the most frigid in memory‚ it provided a brilliantly evocative scene. As the “Cold Genius‚” Best stole the show‚ singing with a stuttering trill that replicated precisely how the cold makes one feel...Best proved the best import of the evening‚ demonstrating the power of character acting in song

Berkshire Fine Arts (January 2013)

“Tho quiv’ring with cold we chatter and tremble‚” sang the chorus in the Frost Scene from Purcell’s “King ¬Arthur.” Moments before‚ the British bass-baritone Jonathan Best had charismatically sputtered out the pleadings of the Cold Genius (”I can scarcely move or draw my breath”)‚ with the H&H Orchestra flicking staccato ice-crystals behind him. ...Music from the rarely performed “Indian Queen” received top billing and was the focus of the second half‚ but Christophers seemed determined to find merriment along the way‚ opening the night with the scene of the drunken poet from “The Fairy Queen.” Here‚ Best stumbled his way onto stage and bent a rich‚ flexible bass-baritone around Purcell’s music of poetic inebriation

Boston Globe (January 2013)

Handel and Haydn’s program opened with the “Scene of the drunken poet” from Act I of The Fairy Queen. The anonymous text is clearly a reworking of Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream. After an introductory series of lively French-style dances the poet‚ sung in suitably boozy manner by bass Jonathan Best‚ staggered on stage‚ only to be set upon by two sprightly fairies in sparkling black body suits (sopranos Margot Rood and Erika Vogel). They pinched him mercilessly‚ then slunk off‚ leaving him blindfolded and miserable... in the marvelous “Frost Scene” from King Arthur. But the scene was stolen by Jonathan Best as the allegorical character Cold Genius. Invoked by Cupid‚ he could sing only in a muted staccato‚ a vocal tour de force effectively echoed with detached bowing by the strings‚ pianissimo‚ and “kerchoos” from a chorus of cold people... Highlights included the opening scene for the Indian boy (Zachary Wilder) and girl (Jessica Cooper replacing Teresa Wakim)‚ and the dialogue between Fame (Zachary Wilder) and Envy (Jonathan Best) culminating in a chorus of praise with trumpet obbligato. Most impressive certainly was the famous invocation scene “Ye twice ten hundred deities.” Jonathan Best delivered the arioso-like recitative and following aria with wonderful attention to expressive detail

Classical Scene (January 2013)

In particular‚ the performance of Jonathan Best was exceptional. He is a vivid performer who exudes complete comfort on the stage. He puts as much effort into his acting as he does into his singing (a rare trait on the operatic stage‚ to be honest). His fervor was so effective in “The Frost Scene” from King Arthur that it reminded me of the nasty weather awaiting me outside. Touché‚ Mr. Best

New England Theatre Geek (January 2013)

The great exception to this general rule was bass-baritone Jonathan Best‚ who made a stunning Boston debut in two of Purcell’s most famous scenes: "Scene of the drunken poet" from The Fairy Queen (a kind of incidental masque devised for A Midsummer Night’s Dream) and the delightful "Frost Scene" from King Arthur (again‚ set to a text by Dryden). Best (at right) proved something like a force of nature - his deep‚ resonant baritone is the kind of voice that the word "burnished" was coined to describe‚ and what’s more‚ he’s an actor of startlingly command (after seeing this‚ I’d gladly watch him essay Falstaff‚ or any number of roles from Shakespeare). I’m actually not sure I’ve ever encountered a singer this talented who is also an actor of this stature; Best is nothing less than a phenomenon...Indeed‚ in some of these roles he was literally a force of nature - in Purcell’s "Frost Scene" from King Arthur‚ the baritone portrayed "The Cold Genius‚" a personification of nature in winter‚ who is stirred from beds of snow to life (and spring) by the power of love. The vignette‚ and Purcell’s music‚ are built around the amusing similarity between shivery coughs and the familiar staccato stroke of baroque strings - and the results are deeply bewitching in the manner of the oldest fairy tales. (The score also features perhaps the only fully-sung sneeze in the choral repertoire.) And Best was irresistible‚ as he was in the even tougher role of the drunken (but self-aware) poet from The Fairy Queen...Purcell was a mysteriously powerful choral writer‚ and there are some stunning choral passages in The Indian Queen‚ all of which got the full Harry Christophers treatment here. Best was in continued fine form

The Hub Review (January 2013)

In the "Drunken Poet" scene from Purcell’s music for The Fairy Queen‚ Jonathan Best staggered about hilariously...The fine group of soloists was led by Best’s powerhouse bass-baritone

The Phoenix.com (January 2013)

Intermezzo‚ Buxton Festival

I have nothing but praise for the rest of the cast: Jonathan Best as the bemused Notary

Opera Magazine (September 2012)

A Buxton Festival regular‚ Jonathan Best (who sang excellently in the title role of Handel’s Saul last summer) held only the small part of the Notary in this production‚ but still shone as a bass of brilliance that I would pay willingly to hear with increased frequency

Bachtrack (July 2012)

Susanne Holmes’s Anna and Jonathan Best’s Notary provide strong cameos

Financial Times (July 2012)

A lively cast of cameos includes Susanne Holmes as Anna‚ the maid‚ and Jonathan Best as Notary

The Times (July 2012)

Jephtha‚ Buxton Festival

...the ever reliable Jonathan Best as Zebul

Opera (September 2012)

All the principals sing well...Jonathan Best sings powerfully as Zebul

Arts Desk (July 2012)

Jakob Lenz‚ English National Opera

As the compassionate if vexed pastor Oberlin‚ Jonathan Best brings welcome humanity

Classical Source (April 2012)

...it’s all deftly done‚ and both Jonathan Best as the pastor Oberlin and Richard Roberts as Lenz’s foppish friend Kaufmann provide Shore with fine support

The Guardian (April 2012)

Shore’s heroic performance is ably complemented by those of Suzy Cooper‚ Richard Roberts and Jonathan Best

Independent (April 2012)

Solid support comes from bass Jonathan Best as Oberlin

Observer on Sunday (April 2012)

Oberlin‚ sung by the gloriously dark-chocolate voiced Jonathan Best‚ is mainly tolerant‚ concerned‚ even puzzled at his friend’s behaviour‚ but finally loses his Christian compassion and leaves Lenz tied to a chair

Opera Britannia (April 2012)

Jonathan Best brought quiet nobility to Oberlin‚ the pastor who witnesses Lenz’s decline

The Telegraph (April 2012)

Support comes however from...the gentle gravitas of Jonathan Best’s Oberlin

The Arts Desk (April 2012)

Oberlin the Lutheran pastor is also a caricature - the sturdy but ineffectual man of God – but received a warm vocal presence in Jonathan Best’s smooth bass

What's On Stage (April 2012)

Mozart Requiem‚ Harrogate Choral Society

The choir were joined by a fine quartet of soloists among whom Jonathan Best‚ of operatic renown‚ stood out with his firm bass and immaculate phrasing

Harrogate Advertiser (November 2011)

Saul‚ Buxton Festival

Jonathan Best was strong in the title role‚ conveying the paranoia and jealous anguish of the eponymous ruler with intelligence and conviction

Opera Today (July 2011)

Jonathan Best’s presidential-style Saul leads an impeccable cast

Oxford Times (July 2011)

Sweeney Todd‚ Théâtre du Châtelet Paris

Jonathan Best imposing as Judge Turpin

New York Times (May 2011)

A Midsummer Night’s Dream‚ Garsington

The mechanicals‚ as ever‚ test the director’s inventive powers. I like very much Jonathan Best’s studious‚ besuited Quince‚ the petite Pascal Charbonneau as Flute (and a worryingly attractive Thisby)

The Arts Desk (June 2010)

The ‘rustics’ are a motley crew of tradesmen‚ nicely led by Jonathan Best as a befuddled Quince

What's On Stage (June 2010)

The Adventures of Mr Broucek‚ Opera North

Jonathan Best dominates the stage whenever he is on it

Opera (December 2009)

The cast around him (John Graham-Hall)‚ playing different characters in the Prague scenes‚ on the moon and back in time‚ are all strongly projected too‚ especially Jeffrey Lloyd-Roberts‚ Jonathan Best‚ Donald Maxwell and Anne-Sophie Duprels‚ all of whom get the English text across with maximum clarity

The Guardian (October 2009)

Jonathan Best is a lugubrious Sacristan‚ Lunabor and Domsik

Independent on Sunday (October 2009)

...with fine character support from the Opera North stalwarts Donald Maxwell‚ Jonathan Best and Frances McCafferty

Sunday Times (October 2009)

...unmissable for John Graham-Hall’s brilliant assum¬ption of the title role and a fine cast‚ from which Anne-Sophie Duprels and Jeffrey Lloyd-Roberts stand out in Janacek’s wondrously youthful love music‚ with fine character support from the Opera North stalwarts Donald Maxwell‚ Jonathan Best and Frances McCafferty

The Times (October 2009)

Donald Maxwell’s friendly publican‚ Jonathan Best’s earnest Sacristan and Claire Wild’s waiter/prodigy/scholar add useful contributions

York Press (October 2009)

The Fairy Queen‚ Edinburgh International Festival

...vocally and instrumentally it was first rate. Christophers ensured that the instrumental numbers had a good sinewy energy‚ and all of the soloists made the most of his or her party pieces. The bass Jonathan Best and counter-tenor Iestyn Davies camped up the dialogue of Coridon and Mopsa to the manner born

The Guardian (September 2009)

Jonathan Best as the Drunken Poet supported himself with an arm round conductor Harry Christophers. As Hymen‚ his deep bass was deliciously grumpy‚ until persuaded to relent. His Dialogue‚ with alto Iestyn Davies‚ of Coridon and Mopsa‚ drew knowing chuckles from the audience

Opera Critic (September 2009)

The Lighhouse‚ Psappha at St Magnus Festival

...with three excellent performances...Jonathan Best as the stentorian Bible-thumping Arthur...this was a memorable‚ rather chilling performance

Opera Magazine (September 2009)

...the cast of three pitch their material with plenty of force and clarity as Maxwell Davies’s writing eases. Jonathan Best’s sepulchral tones slot right into Arthur‚ the keeper who sings a Salvation Army hymn and expects the arrival of an apocalyptic beast from the sea‚ due to dine on sinners

Times (July 2009)

...there was a well-differentiated trio of performances‚ with Jonathan Best menacing as the aggressive‚ Bible-thumping Arthur

The Guardian (June 2009)

The Lighhouse‚ Psappha

There are three fine singers...and the bass-baritone Jonathan Best as the Bible-bashing Arthur are splendidly at home in their roles‚ including in Best’s case‚ that of the Voice of the Cards: for he delivers an ominous Tarot interpretation of a game of crib

Sunday Times (March 2009)

On The Town‚ Théâtre du Châtelet

The best singing comes from Judge Pitkin W. Bridgework‚ Claire’s long-suffering fiance (Jonathan Best); his booming bass proves that Bartolo‚ Leporello and the other roles he has sung at Britain’s Opera North are well within his reach

Bloomberg (December 2008)

Samson‚ Buxton Festival

Jonathan Best is outstanding as Harapha

The Guardian (July 2008)

Jonathan Best makes a sonorous Harapha

Independent (July 2008)

Jonathan Best (Harapha) and Russell Smythe (Manoah) added notes of menace and gravity

Telegraph (July 2008)

Il Matrimonio Segreto‚ Brooklyn Academy of Music

The English laird‚ Jonathan Best‚ is equally silly‚ appearing first in muddy boots‚ incessantly miming cricket‚ stiff‚ pompous and—in his Act II scene with the father‚ bargaining for the girls—quite delightful.

ConcertoNet.com (May 2008)

Jenufa‚ Opera Holland Park

Special mention should be made of Jonathan Best’s Foreman: with thoughtful‚ well-shaped phrasing and warm tone he turned a minor role into a major one.

Opera (August 2007)

Fairy Queen‚ BBC Proms

...an excellent vocal ensemble led by Jonathan Best...

Sunday Times (July 2005)

There were some high points. Jonathan Best reprised the role as the Drunken Poet he did so well at English national Opera some years back.

The Telegraph (July 2005)

Maria Stuarda‚ Grange Park Opera

Jonathan Best made a sympathetic Talbot’‚ especially in the beautiful duet in the penultimate scene‚ when he hears Mary’s confession

Opera Magazine (September 2005)

Excellent contributions too from Jonathan Best as Talbot.

The Guardian (June 2005)

By engaging two artists as strong as Jonathan Best (Talbot)...Grange Park ensured that those small but important roles were taken as strongly as possible

Music & Vision (June 2005)

Jonathan Best offers warmth as Talbot.

The Times (June 2005)

The Thieving Magpie‚ Opera North

...her father Fernando’s (Jonathan Best) rich baritone.

Eastern Daily Press (April 2005)

Jonathan Best has the right gravitas for Fernando.

Irish Times (April 2005)

Jonathan Best’s Fernando...making a noteworthy impression.

The Leeds Guide (March 2005)

Jonathan Best again impresses as Ninetta’s father.

The Stage (March 2005)

The performances are flawless‚ especially the aria between Ninetta (Mary Hegarty)‚ her father‚ Fernando (Jonathan Best) and the mayor (Robert Poulton).

BBC - South Yorkshire (February 2005)

Carmen‚ Glyndebourne

Jonathan Best (Zuniga)...all make their mark.

The Times (July 2004)

Cosi fan Tutti‚ Garsington

Had central Casting taught Dennis Price to sing‚ and sent him to Cosi from Kind Hearts and Coronets‚ he couldn’t have made a suaver bastard of an Alfonso than the mustachioed Jonathan Best.

Observer (June 2004)

Julietta‚ Opera North

Jonathan Best’s stage presence works so well.

Manchester Evening News (May 2003)

Jonathan Best shone in multiple roles.

Musical Opinion (May 2003)

The rest of the cast‚ many playing several small roles‚ played as a true ensemble and made all their cameo appearances very telling - Jonathan Best... making very strong and witty contributions.

The Classical Source (May 2003)

There was characterful support from...Jonathan Best.

The Times (April 2003)

Strong support from...Jonathan Best in multiple roles.

The Observer (March 2003)

Jonathan Best...first-rate.

Sunday Telegraph (March 2003)

Ariodante‚ Opera Theatre Company

Jonathan Best has a stillness and solidity in his singing that rightly counteracts the florid music passages sung by others.

Galway Independent (March 2003)

The bass Jonathan Best brought dignity and gravitas to his part as the senior male figure.

Irish News (February 2003)

Carmen‚ Glyndebourne

...the fabulous Jonathan Best...

Independent on Sunday (August 2002)

Jonathan Best’s Zuniga is a particularly effective study.

Financial Times (July 2002)

Jonathan Best is an impressive Zuniga‚ the only character on stage with the central character’s self-knowledge.

New York Times (July 2002)

Jonathan Best’s Zuniga elevated the role to major status.

Sunday Telegraph (July 2002)

Rodelinda‚ Glyndebourne

Jonathan Best’s villainous but complex Garibaldo delivers an entire aria while puffing a cigar‚ even in full vocal flood.

Financial Times (October 2001)

Cosi fan Tutti‚ Grange Park

The men were all good: Mark Stone and Jonathan Best as (respectively) Guglielmo and Alfonso.

Opera Now (December 2001)

Linda Kitchen’s Despina and Jonathan Best’s smoothly sinister Alfonso – like the sort of commercial traveller you’d never buy from - kept the plot spinning along.

Sunday Telegraph (July 2001)

Linda Kitchen and Jonathan Best‚ both excellent.

Sunday Times (July 2001)

Jonathan Best (Don Alfonso) and Linda Kitchen (Despina) are terrific voices‚ armed with the range of Gambon and comic timing of Julie Walters respectively.

The Independent (June 2001)

Don Alfonso is the hotel manager sung strongly by Jonathan Best.

The Guardian (June 2001)

La Rondine‚ Opera North

Mary Hegarty gives a gorgeous performance as the maid‚ Lisette‚ with the admirable Jonathan Best as Rambaldo showing just how to play a key supporting role without detracting from the major characters.

Yorkshire Post (October 2000)

Mr Emmet Takes A Walk‚ Psappha

The three singers – Adrian Clarke’s pathological victim‚ Jonathan Best as a Commendatore-like waiter-cum-spy-cum-technical engineer and Rebecca Caine’s flighty telephonist-cum-femme fatale - were top rate.

The Independent (July 2000)

Played with consummate skill.

Scotland on Sunday (July 2000)

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