Recent Acclaim

PARK AVENUE ARMORY, Recital with Conor Hanick, September 2021

“His vocal attributes here […] focused, rounded tone, ample breath control, thoughtful phrasing, precise execution of vocal ornaments…

Appleby should offer audiences Schubert frequently […] one can scarcely think of another classically trained American tenor so accomplished in this special and rewarding realm.”
— David Shengold, Opera News
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“In Paul’s ‘intelligent and beautifully performed program of German lieder… Appleby sang the tender pieces with warmth and heartache, and brought almost eerie vitality to moments of heady nostalgia.'”
— Anthony Tommasini, New York Times
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CHAMBER MUSIC SOCIETY OF LINCOLN CENTER, Dichterliebe (The Poet’s Love), November 19, 2019

“Appleby’s performance of Schumann’s cycle was, in a word, superb. His voice was gorgeous across its range, and his control of dynamics was flawless. His nuanced gestures and facial expressions made him a convincing storyteller as he sang of the travails of Heine’s protagonist poet. In the fourth song, ‘Wenn ich in deine Augen seh’ Appleby’s “Ich liebe dich!’ (I love you) was breathtaking, and the ensuing piano postlude was tenderly rendered by Noda. Appleby’s burnished lower register was prominent in ‘Im Rhein im heiligen Strome’ and at the start of ‘Ich grolle nicht’, in which the beauty and power of his top notes at the song’s climax was absolutely thrilling. Noda played the cycle’s extended postlude with touching delicacy. As an encore, the pair offered Schubert’s Am Meer, yet another setting of Heine’s poetry, with Appleby’s voice if anything even more radiant.”
— David M. Rice, Classical Source
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“The clarity and ‘presence’ of Mr. Appleby’s voice, and the aching beauty of Mr. Noda’s playing, signaled that we were in for a captivating musical experience… In “Wenn ich in deine Augen seh” (‘When I look into your eyes’), Mr. Appleby’s sincerity and handsome tone were most agreeable… In “Ich grolle nicht” (‘I bear no grudge’), Mr. Appleby was living the music fully; the song brims over with anger and frustration… The waltzy “Das ist ein Flöten und Geigen” was sung so beautifully sung Mr. Appleby, whilst Mr. Noda expressively seized upon Schumann’s gift of yet another postlude… The singer then displayed his dynamic palette to fine expressive effect in “Allnächtlich im Traume seh’ ich dich”.”
— Philip Gardner, Oberon’s Grove
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“Paul’s tenor is limpid and focused, but with a range of color unusual in an instrument so essentially lyric… His singing is scrupulous and musical; the voice moves fluidly and accurately.”
— BWW News Desk, Broadway World
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“Exceptional young American tenor, Paul Appleby”
— Barry Singer, Playbill
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HOUSTON GRAND OPERA, Saul, October & November, 2019

“As Jonathan, tenor Paul Appleby chooses to take the route of playing the Roman model of probity and constancy, easy to overdo, which I have always admired, but a portrayal which he keeps extremely human and believable, the tensions between him and the son of Jesse being always present onstage, even if not directly expressed in the text. His naturalistic delivery was always empathetic, and made me think that there is still hope for composers who take inspiration from classical models of virtue.”
— Andrew Schneider, Schmopera
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“Paul Appleby, like Purves a member of the 2015 Glyndebourne staging, brought a clear tenor and troubled emotion to the conflicted Jonathan.”
— William Albright, Classical Voice North America
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“Tenor Paul Appleby’s Jonathan is earnest in love for David. ”
— Michael Clark, Houstonia Magazine
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“Indiana tenor Paul Appleby brought an appealing lyric voice and persuasive acting to the role of Prince Jonathan… Appleby possesses the vocal facility for the runs and coloratura passages for Jonathan’s several arias.”
— William, Opera Warhorses
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“Cohen’s vocals also mesh harmoniously with tenor Paul Appleby, who makes a noble and charismatic Jonathan. The two instantly hit it off, and their scenes together are fraught with less-than-platonic implications until Jonathan ditches the formalities and pulls David to the floor. Appleby’s duet with Purves, as Jonathan pleads with Saul to spare David’s life, is also a standout.”
— Chris Gray, Houston Chronicle
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“Tenor Paul Appleby–like Purves, a member of the production’s Glyndebourne cast–sang with a freshness and fluency that captured Jonathan’s sincerity and devotion to David. His Jonathan also mirrored the dignity and tenderness of Cohen’s David.”
— Steven Brown, Texas Classical Review
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“Tenor Paul Appleby, veteran of Glyndebourne’s production, is a picture-book Jonathan, haunting the background as he trails David, or butting heads with his crazed father, “No, cruel father, no”.”
— D. L. Groover, Houston Press
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DUTCH NATIONAL OPERA, Pelléas et Mélisande, June 2019

“Paul Appleby plays Pelléas with a soft and nuanced tenor voice. He not only masters the music vocally-technically, but he experiences the character in all his sensitivity.”
— Lucrèce Maeckelbergh, Klassieck Centraal
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LIGHTHOUSE, The Dream of Gerontius, May 15, 2019

“In many ways Paul Appleby was an ideal Gerontius…He delivered a forthright reading …produced consistent clarion-edged tone… Appleby’s voice was of tremendous vitality, and he had command of words.”
— David Truslove, Classical Source
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“Mr. Appleby was in spectacular form as Tom.  Floppy-limbed and animated by idle nervous energy he was every inch the “shuttle-headed lad” described in the libretto.  His roomy, relaxed tenor was a course of unalloyed pleasure, especially in crescendos in which it bloomed without any hint of strain or steel.  If this performance is any indication, his turn next season as Belmont in Mozart’s “The Abduction from the Seraglio” will be one to watch.”
—Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim, The New York Times
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“Paul Appleby has all the components of an accomplished recitalist.  His tenor is limpid and focussed, but with a range of color unusual in an instrument so essentially lyric: it’s a sound that can give pleasure over a recital’s two-hour span.  His singing is scrupulous and musical; the voice moves fluidly and accurately…Appleby is a singer with a full-throttle commitment to the song repertoire.”
—Fred Cohn, Opera News