Once he acquired for himself Donizetti’s style, the pen of Ferenc Erkel gave birth to the unique sound of Hungarian opera, incomparable to anything else in its colour and style. The opera is full of charming melodies – even in comparison to my whole repertoire Mária’s arias are exceptional, I have also a wonderful love duet, big finale tableau and dramatic scenes. I speak for all of the interpreters who take part in this monumental production, we can feel the responsibility: because if we manage to convince the audience to love it and embrace it, perhaps it might lead to a live, staged performance of this beautiful piece.
2016 Hungarian State Opera
MD: Kocsár Balázs
“The Erkel soprano of our times, Klára Kolonits, was shining in the murderously difficult part, and her interpretation cited Erzsébet Szilágyi’s bravura singing, tragical colours of Melinda and even lights of Mária Gara’s part. And let us underline, that this brilliant achievement took place 6 and 2 days after Verdi’s Requiem.”
13th November 2016, momus.hu, István Timár
“We found a great joy in the memorable singers’ productions. There is no better time to put this piece in the repertoire, than today when the title role has such a perfect interpreter! Klára Kolonits again presented her vocal versatility and spiritually rich character-building, her crystal clear voice is able to sound with dramatic power as well, and meanwhile the coloraturas run with impossible virtuosity. However, the role requires one more important feature, and this was fulfilled as well: Mária Bátori was a firm, strong, charismatic woman, who can easily put even the king in an uncomfortable situation.”
2nd December 2016, operavilag.net, Kata Kondor
2019 Hungarian State Opera
MD: Kocsár Balázs
The main singer are all in great form, let us say – at the top of their careers. Klára Kolonits flaunted her more lyric side with beautiful coloratura fireworks, which she performed with technical perfection and striking musicality. Her vocal characterisation is dynamically varied and sophisticated, full of emotions and radiantly soothing to the ear. All her movements and gestures showed the quality of a genuinely great artist – she goes deep into interpretation of her roles and thus is able to show a real, living person.
November 7th 2019, Melpomené, Zoltán Péter
In the two Budapest stagings, singing the mad scene lullabylike, I felt as little Kitti, and then Zizi – who were playing the child – got relaxed and heavier in my arms. They fell asleep, or got very close. This trust – they didn’t know exactly, what will happen – and this wholeheartedness during the show always brought tears to my eyes. In the course of the scene when it gets clear that Melinda is hallucinating and in the bird mentioned in the aria is really her own troubled soul, Kitti instinctively opened her eyes wide and drew away from me. Zizi was told, at which phrase ending she needs to get up from her dream and run into my arms, and she always managed this with impeccable timing. This was the first time when I realised how perfectly children can feel and follow the music. In Szeged, there was not a word about putting Zsombor to sleep, I needed to explain to an interested and concerned child, in the “bird-language”, all the tragedy that happened to me. He sat down cross legged, looked at me with his incredibly sensible and huge brown eyes and for me the stage “performance” ceased to exist. I felt, I can’t get my eyes away from his, I couldn’t do else, I only held into the gaze of ever-growing, ever-deeper eyes and I just sang, softly and gently, so the magic doesn’t evaporate. In that moment, in Zsombor’s sight and in the faint half-smile on his face I saw such an expression of compassion and sympathy, that I only rarely experience even with grown up partners.
2017 Szeged (original uncut version)
MD: Pál Tamás, Stage: Galgóczy Judit
2012 Hungarian State Opera (⟳ 2013, ⟳ 2013, ⟳ 2015)
MD: Héja Domonkos / Kollár Imre, stage: Káel Csaba
2010 Hungarian State Opera (original uncut version)
MD: Héja Domonkos
2006 Hungarian State Opera
MD: Dénes István, Stage: Kerényi Imre
“The great Melinda of our times did not get the role this season at the Opera House – despite having said many times that it’s one of her favourite roles, which three years ago she sang twice on one day (and wonderfully). This was an exceptional achievement, which presented not only her spotless technique but also her dedication. Now, Kolonits sung the role twice in Szeged (however, not in one day) in the original, longer, more virtuoso version of the opera which shows even better her best qualities.
We could experience again on how strikingly is she able to depict the miserable fate of the character. The part of Melinda is unmatchably difficult, consists of dramatic, lyrical and coloratura sections. The voice of Kolonits is in its essence bright, but full of colours and graceful, even in the highest register rich and secure. Its greatest quality, however, is the human, radiating warmth which enchants our ears and speaks directly to our hearts at the same time. The singing of Kolonits is always shockingly direct, and what she sings about, immediately becomes our own love, our suffering, our own hope or hopelessness.
It’s a treat to analyse this great stage character formation, but it’s impossible to describe what happened at the end of second act (…). Feel of guilt, accusation, forgiveness, love – all pulsating between two people, and the two great artists, with incomparable emotional richness, presented us with complete destruction of a family, a marriage, two human fates. We could literally live through how vulnerable gift happiness is and how much we can loose in just one moment.
Who wasn’t present at the show, can only accuse himself – because there is something in this world that he will never understand. The audience in Szeged celebrated with a standing ovation, four different pirate recordings began to go around the internet the day after, watched by thousands of people since then. The audience said clearly, that they need this very kind of opera singing and acting.”
March 21st 2017, momus.hu, Tamás Márok
“Melinda is THE role for Klára Kolonits – who sung the matiné AND the evening performance on that day. What I heard was one of the most wonderful opera moments in the last years. I would not like to use big words but here it is just a must and only them can express: Kolonits became really a bright star in the history of Hungarian opera culture. Her voice is very powerful, but able to express slightest nuances as well. She sings with a fantastic, even unreal light and resonance without any effort – and masterfully in all the registers, the high one being the most wonderful. There is no orchestra tutti, no ensemble, that she wouldn’t be able to cover with her rich and beautifully soaring soprano. When she hits a high C in the aria, makes it just appear out of silence and volumes it up, without any jump or portamento: unforgettable experience and great technical virtuosity. (…) Kolonits gives back the faith in this art.”
March 20th 2014, momus.hu, ppp
“Klára Kolonits sung Melinda; her Ölj meg engemet aria was wonderful, but in fact it was the third act where she was truly amazing: her precise but expressive, virtuoso coloraturas, rich depictions of the extreme states of the souls put her above all the other performers.”
November 13th 2010, papiruszportal.hu, szabói
“Very high notes, demanding coloraturas were performed spotlessly: which means, that the singer perfectly mastered the technical part of the role. In addition she successfully depicted Melinda’s spiritual world, pain and madness with timbres, and expressive vocal gestures.”
November 11th 2010, operavilag.net, Gábor Bóka
“Both protagonists, Klára Kolonits and Attila Kiss B., were just soaring in the piece – their production, full of human emotions and vocally excellent as well, was supreme. Aria of Melinda and the mad scene were the clue points of the whole evening.”
November 9th 2010, Eszter Máry Szabó
“Klára Kolonits gave us the most balanced and beautiful vocal production of the evening: in addition her part is significantly longer and more difficult in the original version of the opera which was performed. I was following career path of this lovely and very musical singer for the last years. Kolonits was unmatched in her lyrical subtlety, but she was enchantingly secure in all of the numerous virtuoso coloratura passages as well. I planned not to compare to the old masters, but I cannot resist: since Karola Ágai I haven’t heard the mad scene performed so amazingly. Bravo!”
November 7th 2010, Antal Z. Tóth
“Klára Kolonits with a pure voice performed the role of Melinda. Her soprano fits in all the the coloraturas with such an ease and a technical perfection, as they can rarely be experienced in this piece.”
November 2010, Opernglass, P. Wurze
Looking at my stage children, each and every of them gave me some kind of exceptional, rare experience that I will remember forever. Honestly I am grateful to the stage director of this production, because it gave me a new mother-role that I could experience and live-through – traditionally Mátyás is a Hosenrole and the area of young mezzos. I am sure that Dénes, with whom I played in Hunyadi, is a gift for me. I met him in a very sensitive and vulnerable period, and we did together not only a couple of shows but all runs and rehearsals linked to them. This was really a lot time that we spent together and got to know each other thoroughly – and in the effect, we didn’t merely play our roles but we lived on stage. We enriched the relationship between Erzsébet and Mátyás with numerous tiny scenes, and in the 2017 run we crowned it in the finale. After the cathartic execution Erzsébet doesn’t run off from the stage, but stands firm in the scene, looking at the destiny bringing the crown to Mátyás.
2013 Hungarian State Opera (⟳ 2014, ⟳ 2015, ⟳ 2016, ⟳ 2017, ⟳ 2019)
MD: Kocsár Balázs, Stage: Szűcs Gábor
“First, there is a wonderful and mostly unknown Hungarian soprano Klára Kolonits. Upon hearing her live for the first time last week I was immediately taken by the beauty of her wonder timber live. It’s such a luxury to hear a secure voice ring out with such passion and fire. How she is not singing at the top houses in the world is a complete mystery to me? I’m always honest and candid with my opinion, and I would not say this if I wasn’t completely and utterly blown away…. But I urge everyone to check out her schedule and give her a try.”
March 22nd 2016, facebook.com, Dillon Haynes (Coloraturafan)
“Klára Kolonits without any stage items and special effects is able to make us focus entirely on her: so the never-ending applause that remains even minutes after she has left the stage, is no surprise.”
March 13th 2016, mezeinezo.blog.hu, Zsuzsanna Makk
“Klára Kolonits interprets the dramatic coloratua role from the coloratura side – nevertheless, the trills always burst out of her soul, there is absolutely nothing superficial in the interpretation. Her attitude and movements are radiating with nobleness and her suffering hits the hearts of the younger audience as well. They were listening with tense attention and then celebrated her with boisterous applause. Its reassuring how the genuine art is still directly and strongly moving for them as well.”
16th March 2015, tiszataj.hu, Tamás Márok
“From the second act of Hunyadi we get to see practically the whole story through the eyes of mother, Erzsébet Szilágyi, whose role is the most dramatic and the most gratifying. Mother worrying for her son is always credible, especially if the composer provides her with meaningful arias as well. We suffer with her and we admire her coloraturas. The audience rewarded both arias with rare, neverending applause; on that evening as well this was the case with Erzsébet Szilágyi. I appreciate Klára Kolonits not only in her arias, but also when she is listening silently to the king („your son is a murderer”) and I can see all the counterarguments running throuh her body, all the unspoken words. She has her honour, has her diplomatic skills, she keeps silent: but she does not hold in high regard the unsure monarch.”
March 2nd 2015, mezeinezo.blog.hu, Zsuzsanna Makk
“She is really good in this role, wins our compassion. The public appreciated her vocal production during both evenings, she got a lot of applause during the spectacle and in the end she was the most celebrated one as well.”
June 23rd 2014, mezeinezo.blog.hu, Zsuzsanna Makk
“We actually waited from Klára Kolonits that La Grange aria shall finally sound as it should in its beauty without any difficulties or limits. We are not disappointed, the artist shows fantastic coloratura skills, performing gracefully and brilliantly even the most beautiful passages.”
June 17th 2013, operavilag.hu, Kata Kondor
“From any point of view we were listeners and spectators of an impeccable interpretation. Klára Kolonits is a perfect dramatic coloratura, who is not only absolutely secure singing the unbelievably difficult part, but is also able to depict the complex figure staggeringly, yet not hysterically. During the performance the enthusiastic young audience put her in even bigger trial of strength – not knowing that the more difficult part of the La Grange aria is still to be sung they interrupted after the first one with a bursting applause.”
June 6th 2013, momus.hu, Antal Z. Tóth