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Selected Reviews

Anamer Castrello

NEW! Reviews of Carmen in Havana (IN Series, Feburary 2016 (excerpts)

'Another highlight and the star of the show is Anamer Castrello (Carmen). Her full-bodied mezzo soprano is a delight on the famous “Habanera” and "Gypsy Song" with her dancer shadows Delaney Zieg, Kyra Wendelken, and Ao Wang.' Jessica Vaughan, DC Metro Theater Arts, February 6, 2016

'Better yet, the show's cast of talented singers more than match the dancers in skill and enthusiasm. At the top of the list, of course, is Carmen, the star of the show, vigorously and expertly portrayed in this production by the powerful and well supported voice of expert mezzo-soprano Anamer Castrello.' Terry Ponick, Communities Digital News, February 6, 2016

'More than a dozen dancers surrounded the sassy mezzo-soprano Anamer Castrello, although it must be said that she appeared to be having the time of her life, strutting around and singing about a rebellious bird while girls in white fluttered around her. Three ballerinas took turns donning a red brocade vest similar to the singer's to dance the role of Carmen.' Rebecca Ritzel, Washington Post, February 7, 2016

'In Series has teamed up with Washington Ballet Studio Company to produce a fusion of opera, ballet, and Cuban culture that’s teeming with personality. Bizet’s tempestuous story unfolds in a flurry of color, dance, and spirited song. Marked by the highlight of Anamer Castrello delivering a silky rendition of "La Habañera" in the titular role. Castrello’s powerful mezzo-soprano and playful manner fit nicely with tenor Peter Burroughs’ strong, earnest take on benighted suitor Don Jose.' Ben Demers, DC Theatre Scene, February 8, 2016

"Castrello’s voice holds serene clarity in her passionate and compelling lament as Turiddu’s mother". Maria Kuhns, DC Metro Theater Arts July 21, 2014

"Castrello viscerally connected to pieces by Virgilio and Homero Exposito (“Naranjo en Flor”) and Piazzolla (“Milonga de la Annunciacion”)" Anne Midgett, The Washington Post, April 28, 2014

"Mezzo Anamer Castrello took the lead in both works ['Dido and Aeneas' and 'El amor brujo'], bringing a dark, moving passion to the role of Dido, the queen of Carthage. It was Castrello’s evening, though, as she proved in the Falla piece. With music director Carlos Rodriguez at the piano, she sang the role of Candelas with elemental, smoldering heat." - Stephen Brookes, The Washington Post, November 19, 2012

"As Dido, Anamer Castrello demonstrated an impressive range and a genuine mastery of Purcell’s style…The program’s second half featured de Falla’s 'El Amor Brujo.' The In Series, as they often do, re-worked it again to highlight both the versatile talent of mezzo Anamer Castrello and dancer Heidi Kershaw who portrayed the person and the soul of this work’s central gypsy character, Candelas. This de Falla short gave Ms. Castrello the opportunity to show another side of her talent. She morphed impressively from the constraints imposed by a baroque concept of Dido, into the hedonism of the wild gypsy woman who inhabited the dark, dissonant, distinctly 20th century Spanish-Moorish nature of de Falla’s musical style." - Terry Ponick, The Washington Times, November 15, 2012

“[W]hat really allows the In Series to dump all of the emotional baggage of 'Dido and Aeneas' and 'El Amor Brujo' into your lap is the star of both, Anamer Castrello; the mezzo soprano is a dominating singer with a deep register and smoky timbre… She also has a wonderfully expressive face that is captivating to watch as she cycles through the full range of feelings symptomatic of a bad romance—twice.” - Mike Paarlberg, Washington City Paper, November 14, 2012

"The night belongs to Anamer Castrello as the star of both operas. Her mezzo-soprano voice is gorgeous and a true powerhouse, but one that never overwhelms...the only singer is Castrello, who sings four powerful arias in Spanish that seem as if they were written for her voice." - Jessica Vaughan, DC Metro Theater Arts, November 11, 2012

"In Gounod’s 'Romeo et Juliette,' Anamer Castrello as the Nurse, brought things to life whenever she appeared."  - Joan Reinthaler, The Washington Post, May 30, 2011

"I have always loved the music and verismo of Ernesto Lecuona’s “Maria la O” that again has the perfect lead played by Anamer Castrello."  - Alan Savada, Opera-L, January 23, 2011

"With her earthy, sultry mezzo, Anamer Castrello embodies Maria la O’s title character, smoldering and passionate." - Terry Ponick, Washington Times, January 14, 2011

"When Anamer Castrello as Maria, the mulatta songstress, takes the stage, with her generous smile and curves all swaying to the Latin dance rhythms, she carries the audience with her to Havana. Castrello sings with a sultry, smoky yearning and she gives her all." - Susan Galbraith, DC Theatre Scene, January 11, 2011

"'Maria la O' stars Anamer Castrello as the titular character. Castrello’s effusive singing is a nice testament to the legend." - Mike Paarlberg, Washington City Paper, January 10, 2011

"Anamer Castrello was a wonderfully seductive Maria la O."  - Joan Reinthaler, The Washington Post, January 10, 2011

"Anamer Castrello is the talented prima donna of the show, belting out gooey melodies with a calming, round alto voice." - Andrea, Play DC, June, 20, 2008

"Singer (Cantante) Castrello, dressed to the max…bowls us over when she unleashes her lush, smoky power or simply stands on stage and snaps her fingers. Her presence is felt and lingers long after with memorable songs, like 'Veracruz' and 'Azul.'" - Rosalind Lacy,  DC Theatre Scene, June 17, 2008

"Ms. Castrello wowed the audience with her sultry voice and exuberant song delivery." - Bob Anthony, All Arts Review 4 U, June 2008

"In the title role, Anamer Castrello (as Cecilia Valdes) gave an uninhibited, sensate portrayal with a memorable mezzo-soprano – round and clear with a smoky finish." - Ronni Reich, The Washington Post, April 7, 2008

"[In the IN Series’ production of 'Carmen'] Mezzo-soprano Anamer Castrello sang the tile role with warmth and real beauty." - Stephen Brookes,, The Washington Post, March 8, 2007

"Anamer Castrello made a superb Carmen both singing and acting. Her voice was husky and saucy, seductive and mocking, taunting and accusatory."  - Stephen Neal Dennis, All Arts Review 4 U, March 2007

"The Kennedy Center was the venue for the Washington Ballet’s 'Noche Latina'…. The evening had many treats: gorgeous music, the beautiful voice of Anamer Castrello." - Beverly Cosham, All Arts Review 4 U, 2006

"[M]ezzo-soprano Castrello, one of Washington's most distinctive singers, ...performs in Mozart operas and tours nationwide with her program 'Soul of Latin America.' That program, devoted to song classics from south of the border, is the inspiration of this, her first CD, a provocative and beautifully sung mixture of many Latin American flavors, from the bouncy 'Cachita,' with chorus and dance band, to the nostalgic 'En Mi Viejo San Juan' and the sultry 'Besame Mucho.' There is even 'It's Impossible,' sung in perfectly phrased English." - Joseph McLellan, The Washington Post, October 7, 2005. Review on washingtonpost.com (if link has expired see this copy of the review).

"Anamer Castrello and Jorge Anaya singing the duet 'Cucurrucucu Paloma,' each singer boasts a powerful, passionate voice and has a turn at bringing the house down." The Washington Post, October 13, 2004

"Anamer Castrello’s rich, deep mezzo-soprano had exactly the vibrant, gutsy, flamenco-style sound the music requires." The Washington Post, June 8, 2004

"Ana M. Castrello laments Antífolo's infidelity with a show-stopping rendition of 'Perfidia.'" The Washington Post, November 15, 2001

"Anamer es una cantante con gran experiencia tanto en el género popular como en el clásico." Washington Hispanic, February 9, 2001

"Mezzo Ana Castrello's authentic stage presence and deep, earthy tones made her a standout as the fatalistic grandmother." The Washington Post, March 2, 1998

"Castrello, the company's music director, has enough wattage to light a small town—and talent to match. It would be hard not to pale in her presence..." The Washington Post, April 21, 1997

"Ana M. Castrello's full throated Morti, creates a bright gallery of oddballs." Washington Times, October 1, 1997

"Ana Castrello-Vázquez was pert and vivacious as Estrelda, her singing always refined, her phrasing accomplished with finesse." Opera News, February 3, 1996

"Ana Castrello-Vázquez performed these absorbing pieces eloquently..." The Washington Post, November 20, 1995

"Vocally secure Ana Castrello-Vázquez as Estrelda played quite the coquette." The Gazette Packet, October 26, 1995

"Ana Castrello-Vázquez, has the richest and most expressive voice..." The Washington Post, February 18, 1995

"Possibly the best voice in the production is that of mezzo-soprano Ana Castrello-Vázquez..." The Washington Post, July 1995

"Ana Castrello-Vázquez has a deeply resonant mezzo-soprano voice..." The Bethesda Gazette, July 21, 1993

"Ana Castrello acted well and stunned the audience with her beautiful mezzo-soprano. Her few minutes of pure voicing was well worth the price of admission." Jazz 90, WDCU-FM, July 1993

"Ms. Castrello-Vázquez managed to dominate the stage..." Washington Review, April/May 1993

"Castrello-Vázquez has the deep-toned, vibrant, gutsy sound...she brought out all the pent-up and volatile passion in this story." The Washington Post, December 4, 1992

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