//  Critical Acclaim

La Clemenza di Tito / The Metropolitan Opera

“As the manipulative Vitellia, Elza van den Heever is dramatically flamboyant and vocally powerful.”

Classical Source

“Soprano Elza van den Heever, a most versatile singer who seems at home both in lyric and increasingly dynamic repertoire, took on the challenging part of Vitellia, an angry and vengeful princess who is repentant in the end and wins Tito’s forgiveness. Appearing in a dramatic but awkward costume in the middle part of the opera, she negotiated the wide range of the role with aplomb and finesse, while she was most challenged in the lower register. Her high notes had both warmth and steel, and her Act 2 aria “Non più di fiori” was one of the highlights of the evening, as she expressed her conflicting emotion with melancholy and determination.”


“As Vitellia, the woman who feels so narcissistically scorned by Tito that she plots his death and manipulates Sesto into carrying out her plans, van den Heever was magnetic. The soprano sang with appreciable power… The rich color of her voice was also a terrific contrast with the glowing sweetness of soprano Ying Fang’s singing as Servilia.”

New York Classical Review

“Best of all for me, perhaps, was soprano Elza van den Heever as the “villain” of the piece (until she turns the corner and repents), shining brightly in a role that doesn’t quite offer her the showstopping quality of her last Mozart outing at the Met–Elettra in IDOMENEO–but makes up with it in quantity, though none better than Non piu di fiori.”

Broadway World

“As Vitellia, Elza van den Heever spit out witheringly disdainful lines of recitative and turned “Non più di fiori” into a mad scene. The role demands a mezzo’s earthy lower register, a soprano’s shining high notes, and agility with coloratura; van den Heever delivered all three.”

Classical Voice America

“She was not so much a villainess as a weapons-grade drama queenas ferociously stagy as, say, Faye Dunaway might have been in The Favourite.”

The Observer

“…with her flame-drawn singing, she brought a welcome over-the-topness to a work filled with conflicted-but-noble characters.”

The New York Times

The boldest, not to say wildly flamboyant performance, bursting through the formality of opera seria, came from Elza van den Heever as Vitellia; she really let ‘er rip.

Opera Magazine