Intermusica Artists' Management

 

 

Intermusica represents Diana Montague worldwide

Artist Manager:
Maria Mot

Assistant to Artist Manager:
Steven Gietzen

Diana Montague

Mezzo-soprano

Outstanding British mezzo-soprano Diana Montague has been enjoying one of the most distinguished and prolific careers in leading opera houses, concert venues and recording studios. Engagements have led her to the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden; the Metropolitan Opera, New York; La Monnaie, Brussels; Opéra de Paris; Rome Opera; and the Bayreuth, Glyndebourne and Salzburg Festivals, to name a few.

Opera engagements have included Benvenuto Cellini for Rome Opera; Iphigénie en Tauride in Madrid and with Welsh National Opera; Albert Herring, Le nozze di Figaro, Rossini Ermione and Ludmilla in Smetana The Bartered Bride for Glyndebourne; Le Comte Ory in Lausanne and Rome and for Glyndebourne; Monteverdi Orfeo and Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria for De Nederlandse Opera; Sesto La clemenza di Tito in Madrid and Athens; Marguerite La Damnation de Faust in Geneva; Composer Ariadne auf Naxos for Scottish Opera and Lisbon; the title role in Handel Susannah with Andrew Davis and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment; Meg Page in Verdi Falstaff, The Bartered Bride and Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg at the Royal Opera House (ROH); Octavian Der Rosenkavalier for English National Opera (ENO) in Bilbao and in Madrid; Marguerite in Vienna; Idomeneo in Bilbao; and Le nozze di Figaro for La Monnaie and Opéra National du Rhin in Strasbourg.

On the concert platform she has performed with leading conductors including Sir Georg Solti, James Levine, Riccardo Muti, John Eliot Gardiner and Seiji Ozawa. Notable highlights include Mozart C Minor Mass at the Salzburg Festival and at concerts in London and Vienna with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields; Beethoven Symphony No.9 with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment; Ravel Shéhérazade and Mozart C Minor Mass in Madrid; and Elgar Sea Pictures in Antwerp and with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

Diana Montague's recordings include Bellini I Capuleti e i Montecchi (Bruno Campanella/Nuova Era) and Norma (Richard Bonynge/Decca); Donizetti Lucia di Lammermoor (Bonynge/Teldec); Franck Les Béatitudes (Helmuth Rilling/Hänssler); Gluck Iphigénie en Tauride (John Eliot Gardiner/Phillips); Handel Dixit Dominus and Nisi Dominus (Simon Preston/Deutsche Grammophon); Janáček The Cunning Little Vixen (Simon Rattle/EMI); Monteverdi Orfeo (Gardiner/DG); Mozart Idomeneo and Le nozze di Figaro (David Parry/Chandos); Rossini Le Comte Ory (Gardiner/Phillips); Strauss Der Rosenkavalier (Parry/Chandos); and a solo CD of French repertory and a CD devoted to nineteenth-century bel canto rarities.

Recent opera engagements include Marcellina Le nozze di Figaro for the Royal Opera House, Glyndebourne, ENO and the Zürich Opera and Cleveland Orchestra under Franz Welser-Möst; Storge Jephtha at Welsh National Opera; Miss Prism in the world staged premiere of Gerald Barry’s The Importance of Being Earnest at Opéra National de Lorraine; Larina Eugene Onegin at ROH in a new production by Kasper Holten; Gertrude Roméo et Juliette at the ROH; Venus The Coronation of Poppea and Ericlea The Return of Ulysses for ENO; Carmela I Gioelli della Madonna for Opera Holland Park and Damira in the UK premiere of Vivaldi’s La verita in cimento for Garsington Opera.

Last season she made an acclaimed debut at La Haine in a new Barrie Kosky production of Gluck’s Armide for Dutch National Opera and Gertrude in a new Hänsel et Gretel at Théâtre du Capitole, Toulouse. Further engagements included Marthe in an all-star cast of Faust at ROH; Larina Eugene Onegin for Glyndebourne and Mrs Grose The Turn of the Screw at Opera Holland Park.

In 2014/15, Diana Montague enjoys another busy season with two exciting productions at Teatro Real: Gertrude Hansel and Gretel in an all star cast including Alice Coote, Bo Skovus Sylvia Schwartz; and Gertrude Romeo et Juliette with Roberto Alagna and Sonya Yoncheva; Marcellina Le nozze di Figaro for Dallas Opera; Larina in a new production of Onegin at Angers Nantes Opéra; and Marta Iolanta in Peter Sellers’ outstanding production at the Aix-en-Provence Festival.

Diana Montague is represented by Intermusica.
September 2014 / 629 words. Not to be altered without permission. Please destroy all previous biographical material.

Mrs Grose The Turn of the Screw / Opera Holland Park
Cond. Steuart Bedford / dir. Annilese Miskimmon

“Montague's Mrs Grose was lighter, less Giles' Grandmother than some and the role was all the better for it, with the subtlety of Montague's singing and characterisation”
Planet Hugill, July 2014

“Diana Montague’s Mrs Grose effortlessly holds the stage.”
Barry Millington, Evening Standard, July 2014

“Diana Montague’s buttoned-up Mrs Grose is potently characterised as the voice of denial and repression.”
Neil Fisher, Times, July 2014

“Diana Montague reprised one of her signature roles as Mrs Grose. A veteran amid this young, generally light-voiced cast her experience showed in her confident vocal projection and ability to convey a sense of apprehension and concern without appearing to do too much.”
David Gutman, Classical Source, July 2014

“Diana Montague brings bags of experience to her concerned Mrs Grose.”
George Hall, The Stage, July 2014

Madame Larina Eugene Onegin / Glyndebourne Festival Opera
Cond. Omer Meir Wellber / dir. Graham Vick

“The ageless Diana Montague showed that Mme Larina is much more than a supporting role”
Rodney Milnes, Opera, July 2014

“Diana Montague and Irina Tchistjakova expertly conjured the homely domesticity of Tatyana’s childhood”
Mark Valencia, Classical Source, May 2014

L’Issipile / Wigmore Hall
Cond. David Bates

“Diana Montague’s high-tragic mezzo was answered by John Mark Ainsley’s soaringly beautiful tenor.”
Michael Church, Independent, January 2014

Carmela I Gioelli della Madonna / Opera Holland Park
Dir. Martin Lloyd-Evans

“…a glorious Act I duet between Gennaro and his mother Carmela (Diana Montague)...”
Oxford Times, August 2013

“[the] stiflingly traditional adoptive mother (touchingly sung by mezzo Diana Montague)...”
One Stop Arts, July 2013

“Carmela was played by Diana Montague perfectly, portraying the pain of a mother at the point of utter exhaustion.”
The Upcoming, July 2013

“Diana Montague as [Gennaro’s] mother sang as ever with great poise and dignity”
Miranda Jackson, Opera Britannia, July 2013

“Diana Montague offers [Gennaro] unstinting maternal support as Carmela”
George Hall, The Guardian, July 2013

“Diana Montague is a movingly detailed Carmela, the dark, suffering shadow-side of this game of brutish life and love.”
Hilary Finch, July 2013

“Diana Montague (as Gennaro’s mother, Carmela) [offers] five-star support.”
Metro, July 2013

“Diana Montague is perfectly cast as the caring if restricting mother”
Classical Source, July 2013

Miss Prism in Barry L’importance d’etre constant / Opéra National de Lorraine
cond. Tito Muñoz / dir. Sam Brown

“Diana Montague as Miss Prism performed with great honesty and a touching humanity.”
Michel Thomé, resmusica.com, March 2013

Storge in Handel Jephtha / Wales Millennium Centre
WNO / dir. Katie Mitchell / cond. Paul Goodwin

“Storgé’s recitative, 'Twill be a painful separation, Jephtha and aria In gentle murmurs will I mourn provide the most heart-rending moments in this exceptional work. The mezzo-soprano, Diana Montague, gave such great depth to these moments, that there were gasps throughout the house when she had finished. Whilst I have seen and heard many great moments in Handel’s works, there was nothing, that I recall, to match this”.
Denis Joe, Manchester Salon, October 2012

“keenly-felt performance [from] Diana Montague (Storge)”.
Nigel Jarrett, Theatre-Wales.co.uk, October 2012

“As his wife [Storgé], Diana Montague was a warm, dignified figure but clearly with her emotions on a thread. [Her] delivery of Scenes of Horror [...] and her act three outburst were indicators of anxieties bubbling under [and] brilliantly intense. Both arias were sung with great beauty and affine sense of line”.
Robert Hugill, Opera Today, October 2012

“As Storgè, Diana Montague’s sappy mezzo makes ‘In gentle murmurs’ a thing of soothing pleasure - poised, note-centre singing from a knowing Handelian stylist. She's excellent also in the nightmare scene, and contributes powerfully to ‘O spare your daughter’...”
Terry Blain, Opera Britannia, October 2012

“Diana Montague was a powerful presence, visually and musically, as Storgè, utterly believable in emotional terms, exact and intelligently varied in her singing (not least in “Scenes of horror, scenes of woe)”.
Glyn Pursglove, Seen and Heard International, September 2012

Berginella in Offenbach La Périchole
Garsington Opera / cond. David Parry / dir. Jeremy Sams

“Luxury casting in the shape of Diana Montague ...”
Melanie Eskenazi, Music OMH, June 2012

Larina in Tchaikovsky Eugene Onegin / English National Opera
cond. Edward Gardner / dir. Deborah Warner

“But I did enjoy Diana Montague's Madam Larina ... Beautiful performances that, in their way, become the star turns of the show.”
Michael White, The Telegraph, November 2011

“The secondary roles, though, are uniformly superb... Diana Montague as Larina”
Paul Levy, The Wall Street Journal, November 2011

“Diana Montague as Madame Larina shows us how lucky we are to have such superb casting in one production.”
Melinda Hughes, SpearsWMS, November 2011

“Diana Montague (Larina) is exemplary.”
Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, November 2011

“… having Diana Montague as Madame Larina is luxury casting in the extreme. As expected she gave a beautifully etched cameo.”
Keith McDonnell, What’s On Stage, November 2011

“The singing is of high standard throughout Diana Montague (Madame Larina) is almost luxury casting (which deserves huge thanks to the ENO).”
Agnes Kory, Musical Criticism, November 2011

Damira in Vivaldi La Verità in cimento / Garsington Opera
cond. Laurence Cummings / dir. David Freeman

“…with outstanding vocal performance[s] from Montague.”
Anna Piccard, The Independent on Sunday, July 2011

“…it's Montague who steals the show”
Tim Ashley, The Guardian, June 2011

“Diana Montague… in terrific form.”
Richard Morrison, The Times, June 2011

“Diana Montague is superb, both scary and funny, and in wonderful voice as the concubine.”
Paul Levy, The Wall Street Journal, June 2011

“Montague is a powerful Damira.”
Clare Colvin, The Express, June 2011

“Best of all, however, were Jean Rigby and Diana Montague, slugging it out in Hollywood melodrama style as wife and mistress, with Montague in particular singing with total assurance and allure.”
Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, June 2011

Ericlea in Monteverdi Ulysses
ENO / cond. Jonathan Cohen / dir. Benedict Andrews

“Andrews truly knows his craft, and in the process gets outstanding performances from a cast that restores to the spotlight a number of singers not so often heard these days on London stages. Among several beautifully delivered cameos, Diana Montague plays the old nurse as a much put-open servant endlessly clearing up the royal household mess”
Michael White, The Telegraph, March 2011

“…the title role is beautifully nuanced, as is Diana Montague’s as Ericlea”
Michael Church, The Independent, March 2011

“Diana Montague brought all her experience to Ericlea.”
Alexandra Coghlan, New Statesman, March 2011

“…a welcome return to the stage of Diana Montague.”
Edward seckerson, The Independent, March 2011

“Diana Montague does have an individual voice – I would know it anywhere, and she has stolen every show in which I’ve seen her: the role of Ericlea seemed too brief here.”
Melanie Eskenazi, Music OMH, March 2011

“Outstanding among the older cast members were Diana Montague's phlegmatic old nurse, Ericlea...”
Igor Toronyi-Lalic, The Arts Desk, March 2011

“There are wonderful performances from Diana Montague as Penelope’s old nurse...”
George Hall, The Stage, March 2011

Gertrude in Gounod Romeo et Juliette
Royal Opera House / cond. Daniel Oren / dir. Nicolas Joël

“Diana Montague’s Gertrude showed how much can be made of little.”
Andrew Clark, The Financial Times, October 2010

Madame Larina in Tchaikovsky Eugene Onegin
Royal Opera House / cond. Jiri Belohlavek / dir. Steven Pimlott

“In truth, though, I thought that Diana Montague showed everyone else up: not only did she play the part of Madame Larina with an eye for detail, but she also sang with a firmness of tone and feeling for the style of the music in a way that was unmatched.”
Dominic McHugh, www.musicalcriticism.com, March 2008

“Diana Montague an exemplary Larina”
Martin Kettle, The Guardian, March 2008

“Diana Montague was an elegant Larina”
Rupert Christiansen, The Daily Telegraph, March 2008

“Diana Montague … put over the role of mother with style and musicality.”
Richard Morrison, The Times, March 2008

Berlioz Les Nuits d’été
Lyon Opera Orchestra / cond. John Eliot Gardner (Apex 0927 95832-2)

“Diana Montague is intensely moving”
Richard Wigmore, The Daily Telegraph, November 2006

Marcellina in Mozart Le Nozze di Figaro
English National Opera / cond. Roland Böer / dir. Olivia Fuchs

“The most memorable performance in Figaro came from Marcellina – Diana Montague”
Andrew Clements, The Guardian, November 2006

“Diana Montague’s Marcellina is so scrumptious”
Andrew Clark, The Financial Times, November 2006

“A delightful performance from Diana Montague as a glamorous Marcellina”
Richard Morrison, The Times, November 2006

“Diana Montague’s stylishly sung Marcellina.”
Rupert Christiansen, The Daily Telegraph, November 2006

Marcellina in Mozart Le Nozze di Figaro
Royal Opera House / cond. Colin Davis / dir. David McVicar

“Diana Montague’s deft, intelligent Marcellina gave great pleasure.”
Peter Reed, The Sunday Telegraph, June 2006

"The normally frumpish Marcellina is a much more touching, fragile figure than usual (deftly played by Diana Montague)."
Neil Fisher, The Times, June 2006

"Diana Montague (Marcellina) provides wonderfully detailed support."
Andrew Clements, The Guardian, June 2006

Andromache in Rossini Ermione
Glyndebourne Festival Opera / London Philharmonic Orchestra / cond. Andrew Davis / dir. Graham Vick (DVD: Kultur D 2850, Glyndebourne 1995)

“The estimbale Diana Montague makes the most of her naturally noble bearing and aristocratic tone as the hapless war-prize Andromache, who must give herself to the loathsome Pyrrhus in order to save her young child Astyanax. Montague's voice is in top form, dipping easily into an expressive low register, yet generating plenty of electricity at the top of the range.”
Judith Malafronte, Opera News, March 2006

Various arias on the CD: Mozart The supreme decorator
Hanover Band / Charles Mackerras (Opera Rara ORR232)

“In the aria from Bach’s opera Adriano in Siria, and in an aria from Mozart’s Lucio Scilla, Diana Montague sings the unadorned original text with her trademark mastery of the Classical style, the tone warm and rounded, the phrasing elegant, the registers smoothly integrated.

She is just as impressive in Corri’s artful embellishment of Cherubino’s “Voi che sapete”. The duet “Ah, perdona” from La Clemenza di Tito, tenderly sung by Futral and Montague, makes an envoi of serene beauty.”
Richard Wigmore, Gramophone

“Especially gratifying is Montague’s account of Cherubino’s “Voi che sapete”, ‘decorated’ by Domenico Corri.”
Hugh Canning, The Sunday Times

Isolier in Rossini Le Comte Ory
Glyndebourne Festival Opera / cond. Andrew Davis / dir. Jérôme Savary

(DVD Warner/NVC Arts 0630-18646-2, Glyndebourne 1997)
“As the page Isolier, Diana Montague sings brightly and displays consummate stage presence.”
Judith Malafronte, Opera News

“Diana Montague is in fine voice as Ory’s love-lorn page Isolier.”
Christopher Cook, BBC Music Magazine

“Diana Montague deserves unlimited praise in the playful coloratura role of the page Isolier, secure on the top notes.”
A Laska, Das Opernglas

Ludmilla in Smetana The Bartered Bride
Glyndebourne Festival Opera / cond. Dietfried Bernet / dir. Nickolaus Lehnhoff

“Particular thanks for Diana Montague’s acutely musical, delicately phrased Ludmilla.”
Roger Parker, Opera

Mrs Grose in Britten The Turn of the Screw
City of London Sinfonia / cond. Richard Hickox / dir. Katie Mitchell
(BBC Opus Arte DVD OA 0907 D, 2004)

“Diana Montague, with her striking voice and urgency of acting, brings the double-sidedness of the house-keeper Mrs Grose’s character to life.”
W Borchers, Das Opernglas

“Diana Montague is one of the best sung of Mrs Groses.”
William R Braun, Opera News

“Diana Montague’s Mrs Grose is unusually tall and patrician, but utterly convincing.”
Michael Scott Rohan, BBC Music Magazine

“Diana Montague’s youngish, uncomprehending Mrs Grose is the best I have seen or heard, touchingly acted and beautifully sung.”
Hugh Canning, Opera

Adalgisa in Bellini Norma
Opera Holland Park / City of London Sinfonia / cond. Brad Cohen / dir. Mike Ashman

“The real casting coup was Diana Montague’s superb Adalgisa, Norma’s rival in love. Her athletic, even mezzo has never sounded lovelier, she is a supremely intelligent and subtle actress, and she had both a galvinising and steadying effect on the long Act I duet as she and Norma inch nearer to the realization that they both love Pollione. This was sublime music-making, and the sound of their voices twining round each other was spellbinding.”
Peter Reed, The Sunday Telegraph

“Alone among the cast, Montague decodifies the multiple trills and roulades of her role; translating Bellini’s period-specific syntax into a timeless language of feeling with a tone that is warm, fresh, flexible and secure in a performance worthy of any major opera house.”
Anna Picard, The Independent on Sunday

“Miricioiu’s duets with Montague’s Adalgisa, half an hour of pure emotion in sound straddling the interval, were just miraculous: these voices pirouetting as gracefully as ice-dancers somewhere in the musical ether. Montague conceded nothing in quality, giving a profoundly moving performance of vast vocal accomplishment and concentrated feeling. This was hypnotic, heartstopping musical beauty.”
Robert Thicknesse, The Times

“Most of all, there is the glorious singing of Diana Montague as Adalgisa, which deserves a far better showcase than this. But the majestic Montague is simply in a different class, vocally and dramatically, from everyone else involved.”
Andrew Clements, The Guardian

“It was luxury casting to have Diana Montague, fresh and generous of tone, as an Adalgisa who for once made her part a major role.”
Richard Fairman, Financial Times

Berlioz Les nuits d’été
Frankfurter Museumsorchester / cond. John Nelson

“Montague’s voice effortlessly dominated the orchestra, even in the quietest moments, and the moments of greatest sentimentality. The tender lament “Sur les lagunes”, in which she mourns the death of her beloved, is deeply moving. Diana’s facet-rich voice in the “Clair de Lune” is thoughtful and resonant.”
Klaus Ackermann, Offenbach Post

“All the different facets of this poetic world were lit up by the English singer Diana Montague. Montague’s mezzo-soprano timbre is capable of brilliant surprise moments – an ideal pre-requisite for this emotionally laden sound-world, and which completed this important and celebrated Frankfurt event.”
Harald Budweg, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

“Diana Montague dispensed with all the airs and graces of the primadonna. But when you can sing with such a perfect legato, supported by an ideal breathing technique, and when you can keep your different registers so completely even with so little pressure, you don’t need those airs and graces.Where heavier voices would drill into every note of the melody, and lighter voices would offer hysterical, edgy stabs; here the singer allowed the songs to retain the shape of their texts and melodies, evenly differentiated and characterfully voiced.”
Bernhard Uske, FR

Diana Montague – Great Operatic Arias, Volume 2
Chandos / Peter Moores Foundation Opera in English (CHAN3093)
“Diana Montague is a lyric mezzo with a keen musical intelligence and a fine way of making a character come alive. This collection, all sung in English (remarkably understandable), contains some surprises and in general is better balanced and keeps the interest longer than many mezzo recital CDs. After an airy “Non so piu” there is a dignified, articulate and fluid “Parto, parto”. Two austere, grave selections from Gluck’s Iphigenia in Tauris convince us of Montague’s gifts as a tragedienne. “Verdi prati” from Alcina is gorgeous. From Cosi we get the trio, beautifully handled, a sharp and melodramatic “Smanie implacabili”, “Il core vi dono” and “Prendero quell brunettino”, right on the money. Two Mozart concert arias are fresh and pointed, “Chacun a son gout” from Fledermaus is funny and flavourful, and a lovely scene from Borodin’s Prince Igor makes you want to hear more of the lovely opera. In short, this CD is a pleasure.“
Robert Levine, Classics Today

“Opera in English is much better represented by Diana Montague’s second recital for Chandos, which comes hard on the heels of her success of her first. Both show off her gratifying gifts in a wide repertoire for bringing her own language to life and making every word tell. Her Cherubino is appropriately palpitating, her Dorabella at once willful and loving, her Sesto is a troubled, impassioned fellow, her Iphigenia properly plangent. Then she switches giddily from operetta (a cheeky, unexagerrated Orlofsky and the Valencienne / Camille duet with Bruce Ford on impassioned form) to seductive Konchaknova in Prince Igor and to Siébel. Finally there is a poised account of Stölzel’s “If you are near” (“Bist du bei mir”). Montague’s generosity extends to two famous arias by Handel – Ruggero’s “Verdant pastures” (“Verdi prati” from Alcina) and Melagro’s “Noble Forests” (“Care salve” from Atalanta).”
Alan Blyth, Gramophone

“An excellent recital highlighting Diana Montague’s admirable voice and technique. Reviewing Diana Montague’s first volume in this series (11/98), Alan Blyth pronounced it “undoubtedly one of my CD’s of the year”. About her second I can certainly say that the rest of the year will have to come up with something pretty good if it is not to be one of mine. The same admirable qualities of voice and technique are in evidence here. Entirely free of wobble, the registers so well integrated as to be virtually undetectable. The technical difficulties are mastered so completely that they are made to sound easy – the triplets of Sesto’s aria in La Clemenza di Tito, for instance, or the scales of the concert aria “Chi sa”, are so neatly taken that one forgets these are virtuoso pieces and that earlier, more starry, singers of the arias have been held up as the wonders of the age. She is also, essentially, a ‘clean’ singer – in taste and timbre as well as in her way of passing from note to note.”
John Steane, Gramophone

Marcellina in Mozart Le Nozze di Figaro
Glyndebourne Festival Opera / London Philharmonic Orchestra / cond. Mark Wigglesworth / dir. Daniel Farncombe

“There is luxury casting in Diana Montague’s red-blooded Marcellina.”
John Allison, The Times

Octavian in Strauss Der Rosenkavalier
English National Opera / cond. Vassily Sinaisky / dir. Jonathan Miller

“Listening to Diana Montague’s Octavian, it’s hard to believe this has not been her signature role. She puts her stage experience to good use in portraying his coming-of-age, but has credibly boyish looks – and still sounds wonderfully fresh.”
Andrew Clark, Financial Times

“This is beautifully cast, wonderfully acted and gloriously sung. Montague looks great in drag and sings Octavian’s music with a tone that oozes sensuality.”
Tim Ashley, The Guardian

“Diana Montague’s pliant, willowish Octavian is a fine foil to Janice Watson’s Marschallin, aflame with adolescent sulks and ardour. Their affair drips with fabulously ambiguous sexuality.”
Robert Thicknesse, The Times

“Diana Montague, tall, lithe and in superb voice, made an ideal Octavian. In the dance of gender that has her in and out of trousers, she displayed high comic skill as well as touching dignity, especially at the crucial presentation of the rose scene.”
Fiona Maddocks, Evening Standard

Magdalene in Wagner Die Meistersinger
Royal Opera House / cond. Mark Wigglesworth / dir. Graham Vick

“Diana Montague’s feisty, classy Magdalene is an asset.”
David Murray, Financial Times

Sesto in Mozart La Clemenza di Tito
Glyndebourne Festival Opera / London Philharmonic Orchestra / cond. Sir Andrew Davis / dir. Nicholas Hytner (Arthaus Musik 100 406, 1991)

“The sincere, steadfast Sesto of Diana Montague provides a perfect foil, her ripe but always focused low notes contrasting clearly with the soprano quality of Putnam in the same register, while their interaction also attests to Mozart’s inspired understanding of vocal colour.”
Stephen Pruslin, International Record Review

“At the heart of the performance on stage are Philip Langridge (…) and Diana Montague’s equally committed account of Sesto’s part, a character so obviously torn, almost fatally, between his erotic love for Vitellia and his deep friendship for Tito. Montague also acts movingly with her eyes, and her singing is noble, warm and technically flawless.”
Alan Blyth, Gramophone

Marcellina in Mozart Le nozze di Figaro
Glyndebourne / cond. Louis Langrée / dir. Graham Vick

“The casting really is luxurious. We get Diana Montague, no less, as Marcellina, bringing sexuality and depth to a role that is often underplayed or caricatured.“
Tim Ashley, The Guardian

“Diana Montague’s eminently marriable Marcellina – can there be a man in the audience without a proposal of some sort or other in mind? – is luxury casting. Montague sings her aria most beautifully.”
Rodney Milnes, The Times

“Diana Montague’s Marcellina would grace any Figaro anywhere; fresh sounding and with a healthy interest in remarriage, far removed from the old parrot of so many stagings.”
John Allison, The Times

“Diana Montague was star casting as Marcellina: as yet no sibilla decrepita but a plausible and formidable rival for Figaro’s hand, and the most vivid presence on stage.”
Andrew Porter, Opera

“Diana Montague as a very sexy Marcellina was superb.”
Anna Picard, The Independent on Sunday

“A more eligible Marcellina than Diana Montague is hard to imagine, and she justifies her Act IV aria.”
Andrew Clark, The Financial Times

“There was a fine, glamorous Marcellina from Diana Montague.”
Andrew Clements, The Guardian

“Add Diana Montague’s warm sympathetic Marcellina, and you really are talking of a dream cast.”
Rodney Milnes, The Times

“Luxury casting in the character roles: Diana Montague as Marcellina is caustically funny.”
Edward Seckerson, The Independent

Bella imagin: Opera Rara Recording (OR 210)
cond. David Parry

“The Opera Rara disc honours a singer who richly deserves such attention. The recordings date from between 1983 and 1998 and testify to the soundness of her method and usage, for the voice has remained fresh and firm over these 15 years. This is music that tests a singer’s technique. The florid work is even and fluent, and in a relatively simple melody such as the delightful song of Alfred the Great she combines a scrupulously preserved legato line with unexaggerated warmth and expression.”
John Steane, Gramophone

“An opportunity to hear this lithe, exquisitely centred, beautifully proportioned mezzo voice is always welcome. Montague’s flexible, sure-footed ability to imbue every phrase she sings with meaning is without compare among her immediate peers. She brings a heart-rending reality to the hysteria-tingerd finale of Mercadante’s Amleto, and exhilarating panache to Donizetti’s Zoraida.”
Michael Quinn, Classic CD

“With its early-Romantic sensibility, Rossini’s L’Inganno felice makes a wonderful vehicle for Montague’s ability to chart a long lyric line, as does a prayer from Winter’s Zaira. Her sheer technical accomplishment is well displayed in the florid finale to Donizetti’s Zoraida di Granata. These qualities combine throughout with first-rate musicianship and a keen dramatic sense.”
George Hall, BBC Music Magazine

“Her mezzo-soprano retains its special quality throughout: a richness at the bottom balanced by a shining top, making her an especially flexible artist. With strikingly elegant stage presence, she is suited to both trouser roles and the most feminine characters.”
John Allison, The Times

Abenamet in Donizetti Zoraida di Granata
Opera Rara recording (ORC 17) / Academy of St Martin in the Fields / cond. David Parry

“Diana Montague with her warm sound and accurate passagework proves to be a major addition to this worthy and admirably produced resurrection.”
George Jellinek, Fanfare

“Montague makes a splendid effect in the part of Abenamet. She sings handsomely, with true brio in Abenamet’s newly written, Rossinian cavatina and cabaletta, and comes together with Ford’s Almuzir in a freshly composed and finely written Prison scene that both artists make the most of. Altogether, both Montague’s and Ford’s contributions to this substantial appendix are as good a reason as any for investing in this extended enterprise.”
Alan Blyth, Gramophone

Octavian in R. Strauss Der Rosenkavalier
Chandos Opera in English (CHAN 3022) / Philharmonia Orchestra / cond. David Parry

“The lustrous Octavian of Diana Montague, whose gleaming, ardent sopranoish mezzo is so perfect that one marvels that no British company has yet thought of casting her in the part.”
Hugh Canning, The Sunday Times

“Diana Montague’s Octavian is brimful of ardent love for both the women in his life.”
Alan Blyth, The Daily Telegraph

“Diana Montague is warm-voiced and ever courteous as Octavian.”
John Higgins, The Times

“The voices of Yvonne Kenny’s luscious, wistful Marschallin and Diana Montague’s coolly beautiful Octavian twine round each other in exhausted, post-coital delirium.”
Tim Ashley, The Guardian

Great Operatic Arias
Opera in English (CHAN 3010) / Philharmonia Orchestra / cond. David Parry

“This superbly executed programme of French opera arias, sung in the vernacular with incredible diction and full of dramatic import, must be reckoned the jewel so far in the Chandos Opera in English series. Above all it is Montague’s distinctive timbre, sense of the correct style and complete identification with each character in turn that makes the recital so thrilling, exciting and pleasing at once to the ear and the senses. An account of Orfeo’s “What is life?” that equals if not surpasses Ferrier’s, a Delilah to die for, each of her arias given a different character as required, a Marguerite (Berlioz’s) who yearns with the best on disc (Montague’s low tones here so eloquent, the climax given all its due before the intense reprise), a Mignon who is suitably mysterious (“Have you heard of the land?” so full of longing for a lost ideal with a marvelous lift at the words “my home”) and a Donizetti Leonore who ‘speaks’ so tenderly of her love for her Fernando, with a cabaletta, to show off the singer’s forceful attack. All these emotional states are contained within a line and tone that respect vocal verities. In sum, I so admire the sincerity and generosity of every item here – no gloss, no hype, just the real thing.”
Alan Blyth, Gramophone

“Her singing is lustrous and stylish. A lovely disc.”
Michael Kennedy, The Daily Telegraph

“Diana Montague’s readings are given particular distinction by her instinctive sense of style and her thorough involvement with each character she is portraying. Allied to her highly individual timbre and her impeccable diction, this makes for a potent brew as she digs deep into the personalities of Donizetti’s Leonora, Saint-Saens’ Delilah, Berlioz’ Marguerite and Thomas’ Mignon. Montague is equally adept, as she has often shown on stage, in trousers roles, such as Siebel in Gounod’s Faust, and she proves herself a witty interpreter of Offenbach’s Perichole. This is certainly one of my discs of the year.”
Alan Blyth, The Daily Telegraph

Junon in Rameau Platée
Royal Opera House for Edinburgh Festival / cond. Nicholas McGegan / dir. Mark Morris

“In Act 3 there was at last a voice of impressive proportions: Diana Montague as Junon, commanding, lustrous, awesome.”
Raymond Monelle, The Independent

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