The NdB’s Janáček Opera was declared opera company of the year 2016 by the acclaimed Czech opera critic Helena Havlíková on the portal lidovky.cz. She also singled out as the two best performances in female roles soprano Pavla Vykopalová’s portrayal of Káťa Kabanová and Eva Urbanová’s depiction of the Kabanicha in the Brno staging of the opera Káťa Kabanová by the world-famous director Robert Carsen.
“For me, the opera company of the year 2016 is the Brno ensemble – with the exception of the total flop of Bizet’s tired Carmen, all the other productions in addition to Káťa and Gilgamesh are among the best that were produced in the country last year – the provocative Powder Her Face by Thomas Adès, conducted by Marko Ivanović, who also conveyed the evocative power of the richly expressive music in Béla Bartók’s Bluebeard’s Castle, imaginatively linked together with Schönberg’s Expectation – all of this in a stylistically pure staging by David Radok with soloists from a coproduction with Göteborg. And Jiří Heřman brought a humorously light touch to Dvořák’s opera The Devil and Kate with his directorial conception of the fairy tale as a school trip.”
Helena Havlíková, Lidové noviny, 3. 1. 2017