“The only voice new to the COC audience was young French mezzo-soprano Clémentine Margaine. Born in 1984 in Narbonne, France, Margaine at 32 has already established herself as a definitive Carmen, having sung this role in Berlin, Munich, Rome, Naples, Washington, and Dallas. She’s slated to take it to the Metropolitan Opera next season …

Without a doubt, Margaine is a stunning Carmen, and I’ve seen many over the years, from Horne to Berganza to Baltsa to Crespin. More recently, Antonacci and Garanca made strong impressions.  To my eyes and ears, Margaine’s Carmen is among the most idiomatic and balanced in terms of voice, musicality and theatricality.

She has charisma in spades — you can’t take your eyes off her. Her Gypsy is alluring and impetuous, but never crude or vulgar. The voice is gleaming and opulent, with plenty of volume and power, completely even up and down the scale, with no discernible break between head and chest registers. By the end of Act 4, she has made a believer out of me. The audience certainly thought so, giving her the biggest ovations of the evening. The COC should bring her back as soon as possible.”

Read the entire review via Musical Toronto