In Review: Babcock and Livengood impress in COT "The Consul"

"Audrey Babcock was on the same level as Magda’s nemesis, the Secretary–the consul gatekeeper whose mindless subservience to rules, forms and appointments keeps the desperate emigrants waiting forever for their visas. With crystal-clear diction and an ample mezzo voice, Babcock managed to convey both the comic and sinister side of this inflexible authority figure, while bringing plausibility to her belated moment of compassion. Victoria Livengood—an acclaimed Secretary in this opera throughout her long career–has graduated smoothly to the role of the Mother. The veteran mezzo-soprano was dramatically effective, bringing poignance to her lullaby to Magda’s sickly child."

-Chicago Classical Review Read full review.

"Audrey Babcock is wonderful as the automaton-like Secretary" -Chicago Tribune Read full review.

"The Secretary, as portrayed by Audrey Babcock, did a terrific job in portraying every vocal and dramatic nuance of her part. She moved the audience by saying or singing one word “Next.” Her character develops from initial officious indifference to empathetic active involvement in Magda and John Sorel’s plight."

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"Livengood’s performance was one of the highlights for me; she is truly a theater buff’s singer, projecting and articulating wonderfully, and putting her acting on an equal plane with her singing. The mezzo’s low growl at the end of Lullaby was something to behold! . . . There was truly no weak link in the vocal performances: Audrey Babcock, making her Chicago Opera Theater debut, was an excellent secretary"

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