Opera Holland Park, London, July 16


Rosa is an ideal role for as experienced a soloist as Rosalind Plowright, and one with so commanding a stage presence. She made the most of it. The Ukrainian bass-baritone Vassily Savenko, equally experienced, made a vivid Baldassare, showing no fear when his aria about M. Seguin's goat went treacherously high. Kate Ladner was the bright-toned Vivetta, and Nicholas Todorovic a just sufficiently dangerous Metifio. Zoë Todd was both physically convincing and infinitely touching in the the trouser-role of L'Innocente, a gift of a part most sensitively taken. I worried a little about Sean Ruane, so memorable as Ruggero in last year's OHP Rondine: he fielded more tone than strictly necessary, with audible signs of strain. But Federico's Lament went very well and duly stopped the show, as it must. A good, rousing evening.


Rodney Milnes

Opera, October 2003


Garden Opera in Regent's Park, London, July 13


Carmen herself was totally deglamorized and played with self-destructive viciousness by Zoë Todd: when she caught sight of José his fate was sealed, and her subsequent contempt for him erupted into terrible outbursts of rage; finally it was she who offered him the knife to kill her. It was a no-holds-barred performance, sung in a highly-individual, darkly-coloured mezzo with real bite to the bottom register, used to telling effect in Carmen's solos.


Margaret Davies

Opera, October 2003




Not that anyone in their right mind would want to mix it with Zoe Todd's Carmen, a Molotov cocktail of needy psychopathy whose only real kicks come from beating the solids out of the chaps. It is the most unstinting performance by a singer unafraid to do unusual things with her voice, a completely individual all round performer who makes you wish casting directors would bestir themselves. Her brilliantly sluttish get-togethers with pals Frasquita (Bourne again) and Mercedes (Saffron von Zwanenberg) occasionally stray closer to Pontypridd than Seville.


Robert Thicknesse

The Times, London, 8 July 2003

©2003 Times Newspapers Ltd


But Zoë Todd's Carmen shone like a bright star. Vocally she was superb, but that seemed almost incidental to her portayal of a character who is superficially arrogant and nymphomaniac, yet hiding deep loneliness and a desperately low sense of self-worth.


Her coquettishness was attractively mischievous, and her passion was formidable.


Mary Scriven

The Henley Gazette, August 2003

The Barber of Seville


This is The Barber as you have never seen him before in a production by Garden Opera. The conductor Peter Bridges and the director Martin Lloyd-Evans have replaced the orchestra with a Trojan piano quintet and done away with the overture and recitative. Nonetheless, this is still an uproarious evening that captures the absurdity and sheer theatrical joy of Rossini's comedy. The wonderful Zoe Todd is the scheming minx Rosina, Declan Kelly an all-action Almaviva, and Ian Jervis a wildly camp Figaro.


Robert Thicknesse
The Times (London) August 3, 2002


Benvenuto Cellini


Zoe Todd may be pocket-sized but her voice and presence are anything but, and in her trouser-role as Cellini's apprentice Ascanio she held the stage brilliantly in her last-act drinking song. 


Robert Thicknesse
The Times (London) April 20, 2002


The Bear


William Walton's vaudeville The Bear is in vogue at the moment: this was the third I've seen this centenary year, and ... was stunning - easily the best I've seen, thanks to Zoë Todd's fantastically haughty Popova and Stephen Wells as the bluff Smirnov, the creditor who doorsteps the recent widow and ends up with her in his arms after a blazing row. The Bear features a very English failure to take anything seriously, but these two brought an electrifying level of involvement.

Todd's languishing widowhood had the seeds of real grief, while containing sexy hints of her eventual defrosting. She has a slightly off-white tone of huge character, wonderfully curdly chest notes, a gift for pastiche, and a wholly natural way of shaping a phrase.
Wells was a bit dapper and unbearish but gave as good as he got in their high-octane stand-off. This was real character comedy, done by two genuine singing actors who should move on to bigger stages.


Robert Thicknesse
The Times (London) May 20, 2002


Clori, Tirsi e Fileno; Heaven


The three singers were proficient actors and acquitted themselves pretty well in a quadrille with the lap dancers at the end. Todd made the most of her throaty, sexy mezzo, with a nice legato in Amo Tirsi and a panoply of Zerlina-like wiles in the insinuating Barbaro!


Robert Thicknesse

The Times, London Monday 21 May 2001