The British tenor Adam Smith is a sensation in the title role. He has all the necessary assets for Hoffmann: he has the youth, ardor and physical beauty, in addition to excellent French, with a particularly charming tone and a technique already accomplished for his thirty-two years.
Adam Smith is a revelation. Hoffmann’s role is grueling. One feels in the epilogue a legitimate fatigue. But how promising for this young tenor, if he knows how to not dissipate his potential. The pronunciation, to which we French are so attached when it comes to opera in our language, is neat, the natural emission of the voice ideally stamped so that the poet stands out from the other tenors without forcing the line.
Tenor Adam Smith captures his character in a performance of perfectly controlled vocal and dramatic cynicism. At the first night, his jauntily sinister rendition of La donna è mobile brought the house down.
In the title role, overwhelming, the young Englishman Adam Smith performs a first-rate physical and vocal performance.....Gifted for comedy, his Hoffmann is a will-o’-the-wisp, a poet who is doubtless spooky but of great humanity and real boldness - what a great idea to have asked him to accompany Nicklausse’s “C’est l’amour vainqueur” himself on the violin, in the second act - his biting and generous voice never forgetting to be nuanced.
Adam Smith is a musician in the soul - he accompanies Nicklausse on the violin himself, in his beautiful air ‘C’est l’amour vainqueur’, a thrilling and accomplished tenor. The grain of voice appears magnified with beautiful golden colors, the width of the role totally assured, the engagement scenically as first-rate as the voice, carried by a young physique.
Smith makes the part his own with his matinée idol looks and towering tenor voice, as he sings the famous ‘La donna è mobile’. The scene where he fondles the disembodied limbs of a mannequin would be wasted without his strong acting skills.
Tenor Adam Smith gives his duke a boyish charm, but lets that mask slip to show the callous man beneath. His La Donna E Mobile is not some light froth. It punctuates just how cruel he is.
The tenor Adam Smith, singing Oronte, is definitely one to watch. His performance as Giselda’s lover was charismatic and suited to the romantic tone of voice, which is consistent and rounded. It also possesses incredible shimmer and blade.
Adam Smith’s gleaming tone was perfect for Oronte, the youngster from the opposing gang with whom Giselda falls in love. His Act II aria, the delightful “La mia letizia infondere” was all the more impressive given the competing distractions caused by Annie Miles’ athletic gyrating.
Adam Smith portrayed the innocent Cassio as a humble gentlemen with a touch of naivety. A warmth and shyness in his voice conveyed his character authentically. His chemistry with Stoyanov produced excellent dramatic tension.