Published by Opera Today, October 13, 2013
The Tragedy of Carmen, Syracuse Opera
There is much to love in the singing here, and Ola Rafalo — singing her first-ever role of Carmen — deserves the lion’s (or should I say tigress’s) share of the credit.
Rafalo’s dark and richly hued mezzo soprano during the sultry Habanera established her character immediately as a seductress par excellence, and her pitch in the devious Seguidilla was incredibly accurate — with no sign of seams when navigating through vocal registers during the spacious octave leaps that permeate this demanding aria.
Rafalo’s acting skills are quite satisfactory in this role, buoyed by her good looks and attractive figure that breathe life into her persona as a deadly siren. I especially loved her rendition of the famous Triangle Song, which she delivered in bravura fashion—
I'm glad I saw this production- the fine singing (and in particular the memorable performance of Ola Rafalo).
— David Abrams