IN THE PRESS

“Mezzo Beste Kalender… A fine French diction and rich dark timbre enhanced every song. Seductive and mischievous in ‘Les roses d’Ispahan’ by Fauré, Kalender added some wicked castanets playing to her gamut in Ravel’s ‘Zaïde: Boléro’. She was particularly memorable in Ravel’s Chansons madécasses, alongside the flute and the cello…”

Lydia Perović, The Whole Note, Songmasters Recial: L’invitation au Voyage

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“This song recital showed us another side of her art. Her exceptionally rich and luscious mezzo with its lovely sheen was very much in evidence here — also very enjoyable was her gentle “Les roses d’Ispahan” by Fauré.”

Joseph So, Ludwig Van Toronto, Songmasters Recial: L’invitation au Voyage

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“Beste’s voluptuous, smokey mezzo was shown to advantage in Duparc’s L’invitation au voyage, her humour (complete with castanets) in Berlioz’ Zaïde: boléro and her sheer dramatic flair in Ravel’s Chansons Madécasses”

John Gilks, Operaramblings, Songmasters Recial: L’invitation au Voyage

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“The gypsy and matador choruses, which included Beste Kalender’s Flora and James McLennan’s Gastone, showed off solid diction and clean, balanced harmonies. For their supporting roles, both Kalender and McLennan made the most of their stage time, with both artists showing off their showmanship and acting abilities in bringing the main characters together.”

Oliver Munar, Schmopera, Edmonton Opera’s La Traviata

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“…scene-stealing Beste Kalender as The Old Lady. It’s remarkable when someone so young can play a character so stereotypically old and with a thick accent that it doesn’t appear inauthentic. Kalender is the role, to put it plainly, and she threw herself into it, effectively igniting all its surreal, bizarre humour. And on top of it all she’s a great singer, pure and simple.”

Stephan Bonfield, Calgary Herald, Banff Centre’s Candide

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classical voice NA

“..a standout was Beste Kalender as the Old Lady. Kalender managed an excellent Polish accent and did better than pass for an enterprising senior three times her actual age. She also has a definite comic flair.”

 Bill Rankin, Classical Voice North America, Banff Centre’s Candide

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“Turkish-Canadian mezzo Beste Kalender was every inch the glamorous diva, sang with luscious tone, and acted up a storm..”

 Joseph So, Opera Canada, Toronto Operetta Theatre’s La Belle Hélène

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” There are some very good performances, notably by Beste Kalender in the title role. In appearance she could have stepped straight out of a Minoan fresco and vocally she navigates Helen’s very tricky music with great facility and rather beautiful tone colours. She does “petulant” and “hissy fit” really well too.”

John Gilks, Operaramblings, Toronto Operetta Theatre’s La Belle Hélène

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“La Belle Hélène provides an excellent showcase for the talents of Beste Kalender in the title role. Kalender possesses a large, lustrous and rich mezzo-soprano. But she also has a delightful agility of technique and a sense for comedy that she shows off in a series of extended interpolated runs in Act 2. She has the full measure of the role playing Hélène as an faux-innocent victim of destiny as well as a young woman instantly attracted to the strapping young Paris who clearly outshines her aged husband. Kalender is wonderfully coy and flirtatious .. and brings out the beauty of the operetta’s most famous melody..”

Christopher Hoile, Stage Door, Toronto Operetta Theatre’s La Belle Hélène

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“As Cherubino, Turkish-Canadian mezzo Beste Kalender sang with gleaming tone in her two arias and acted up a storm. Hers is a voice to watch…”

 Joseph So, Opera Canada, Le Nozze di Figaro, Richmond Hill Centre for The Performing Arts

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“Opening the program was mezzo-soprano Beste Kalender who used facial expression and ample gesture to carry us to Reynaldo Hahn’s Venice. She chose three selections from his Venezia. We loved the romantic “La barcheta” for its stunning vocalise and “Che peca!” for its wry humor. The songs were sung in Venetian dialect and delighted us thoroughly…”

Meche Kroop, Voce di Meche, Marilyn Horne Song Celebration, Carnegie Hall

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“It was a strong line up of soloists…The countess is a mezzo but gets lush, lyrical music more like Mozart’s countess. It was a great fit for Beste Kalender’s rich, dark voice”

John Gilks, John’s Opera Ramblings on the Canadian premier of I Due Figaro by Mercadante, Voicebox: Opera in Concert

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“…Beste Kalender…added a special, piquant taste to champagne at the Minsk Opera’s celebrations by giving a brilliant performance of Rossini’s passages in Cinderella…”

Bolshoi Theatre of Belarus, Christmas Gala Concert

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“…this is an equally daunting aria, and Ms. Kalender was up to the task with her rich, gleaming tone, abundant theatricality, and temperament to burn. ”

Joseph So, Opera Canada, Singing Stars: The Next Generation

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“The title role [Carmen] is sung by mezzo Beste Kalender and she smolders. Every body-movement and stance reflects a seething sensuality, even her castanets are orchestral in effect..”

Terry Gaisin, Ontario Arts Review, Brott Opera Carmen

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“Playing la Carmencita this time around is rising-star mezzo-soprano Beste Kalender. Beste stepped into the limelight last season when she sang this same role from the pit in a production for Calgary Opera when their lead took ill. She’s been singing it a lot since and you can tell. The voice is a perfect match for the role, creamy and dark with an agility that’s exciting to witness…”

Greg Finney, Schmopera

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“I was immediately struck by the warmth, depth, and richness of her sound and by an aural radiance that never faded.. She appeared in absolute control..”

Susan Elliot, Musical America

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“Ms. Kalender impressed with her superb control of dynamics and her total immersion in the text… Ms. Kalender’s style is one of generous dramatic interpretation.”

Meche Kroop, Voce di Meche

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“…E tra le figure di contorno, non si è mai vista una governante di Gilda tanto cinica, avida, schiettamente, sgradevole come quella tratteggiata qui da Beste Kalender.”
Marco Beghelli, Il resto del Carlino

“L’orchestra, diretta da Renato Palumbo, ha accompagnato sul palcoscenico un cast di prim’ordine: il baritono Marco Caria è Rigoletto, il tenore Celso Albelo nei panni del Duca, il soprano Irina Lungu è Gilda e Beste Kalender la governante.”
Il resto del Carlino, on Beste as Giovanna in Rigoletto by Teatro Comunale di Bologna, Italy,

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“Beste Kalender’s rich tone and slightly exotic English really made Bianca into a rounded character.”

John Gilks, John’s Opera Ramblings on Beste as Bianca in The Rape of Lucretia

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“Beste Kalender was superb in her role of Lucretia’s wise nurse, Bianca…”

David Richards, Toronto Concert Reviews

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“As Lucretia’s nurse, Bianca, and her maid Lucia, mezzo-soprano Beste Kalender and soprano Ellen McAteer (respectively) gave probably my favorite singing of the night… these two sounded like they’ve been making music together their whole life. Kalender’s rich, active, smooth mezzo and McAteer’s twinkling soprano were a match made in heaven.”

Greg Finney, Schmopera

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“Beste Kalender was an immediately captivating presence in the title role (La Cenerentola). With a voice that is both fluid and expressive, Kalender seems particularly well-suited for Rossini’s characteristic mix of soaring melodic lines and rapid patter.”

Edmond Johnson, Opera News

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“Mezzo-soprano Beste Kalender nailed the role of Cinderella, her richly resonant instrument and spectacular range projected easily into the cavernous Granada Theatre. Kalender’s refreshing vision was of a strong Cinderella, confident and self-reliant despite her unhappy circumstances…”

Daniel Kepl, CASA Magazine

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Calgary Opera’s opening night performance of Carmen:. “.. On one hours’ notice, mezzo-soprano Beste Kalender, originally scheduled to sing the role of Mercedes, learned that she would have to sing the title role. This she did, and with remarkable success…”

Kenneth Delong, Calgary Herald

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“Beste Kalender, un mezzo «ensoleillé» émouvant et de grande lignée. Elle a déjà donné des spectacles et des récitals en Turquie, son pays d’origine et au Canada, qui l’a adoptée. Elle rejoindra le programme de développement pour les artistes émergents avec l’Opéra de Calgary pour la saison 2014-2015.”

Bernard Georges, La Marseillaise

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“En effet, la brune piquante, Beste Kalender, dans la Séguédille de Carmen, promène avec charme et malice sa voix chaude aux graves somptueux. Elle ravit ensuite l’auditoire dans deux airs de Mozart : La Clémence de Tito et Le Nozze de Figaro, ainsi que dans deux duos…: « Aprite, presto, aprite ! » des Nozze, puis celui « des fleurs » de Lakmé où les deux voix féminines se fondent délicieusement…”

Francis Pabst, Musiques en Provence

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“Beste Kalender as the male fox was excellent with a really attractive mezzo voice and, again, very good acting.”

John Gilks, John’s Opera Ramblings

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“The finest performance came from Beste Kalender as Zerlina. She sang with warmth and had just the right mixture of naiveté, spontaneity and artfulness.”

Hans de Groot, The Whole Note

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“It comes as no surprise that Beste Kalender, the fully-realized Zerlina, already has performing experience in Canada and her home country, Turkey.”

Michael Johnson, ConcertoNet.com

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“Mezzo soprano Beste Kalender was outstanding in her interpretation of the seductive Carmen. Helped by her exotic brunette beauty, she projected a natural Carmen, supported by her fluid mezzo and excellent intonation.”

Ute Davis, National Capital Opera Society

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