“known for feats of site-specific operatic derring-do”  —The New Yorker

“consistently innovative”  —TimeOut New York

“frankly glorious” —ConcertoNet

“intense performances of unusual works”  —The New York Times

“exhilarating”—Opera News

The Constitution

“…one of the most unique and fascinating works in New York” Operawire

‘The Constitution,’ ‘Figaro 90210!’ Headline Top 5 Operas to See This Weekend

“During these complex political times, it is especially unique to see a work that puts the Constitution front and center. This is an opportunity for audiences to familiarize themselves with a document that represents the soul of the U.S.” Operawire

“The VPR chorus brought bucketloads of character to Yarmolinsky’s extended choral passages; the result was less a homogenous chorus, and more a rich tapestry of individual personalities coming together in a sharp, full-throated ensemble. Their performance had an infectious energy, which, under the baton of Peter Szep, was channeled into a nuanced and vibrant interpretation of the composer’s score.”

“In a directorial coup, the doors to the theater, bordering onto the street, were left open throughout, so that the entire performance took place in full view of Brooklyn’s gawking flâneurs. At times, the performers spilled out onto the sidewalk, their gentle chorale mingling with the sounds of passing traffic and restaurant punters, as if hinting at the vast American nation beyond.”Parterre

“Benjamin Yarmolinsky’s choral work is literally a setting of the articles of the Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights, all the more important in today’s troubled age.” Superconductor

Malvina di Scozia

all of the artists involved did such an extraordinary job that the beautiful bel canto and the gripping drama came across with vivid and lasting power. The amount of work, dedication and passion it takes to put together something of this value and quality are incredible. The discovery of Giovanni Pacini’s Malvina di Scozia was truly a revelation.”  Allegri con Fuoco

“The whole experience tonight gave me a greater appreciation of the truly noble and noteworthy effort of the Vertical Player Repertory’s highly laudable excavation in their initiative to unearth Pacini’s all but forgotten bel canto masterpiece Malvina di Scozia. Now that was a worthwhile venture into the dusty annals of oblivion. To bring a discovery like Malvina to light is truly something to get excited about.” Allegri con Fuoco

a stunning work…what a glorious evening we spent with this fine group, hearing music that might well have been lost forever.”  Voce di Meche, A Gem Unearthed

“Vertical Player Repertory is pursuing a valuable mission in expanding our knowledge and experience of Italian opera with this type of bare bones concert performance.” Gay City News, Forgotten Treasures of Bel Canto

The VPR production proved engrossing and attractive…a memorable occasion”  Parterre Box, live and empoisoned

Jewels of the Baroque

“The tantalizing concept: a group of musicians and players straight out of the High Baroque are hired to entertain a wealthy but not exactly aristocratic family in what promises to be a hysterically tense and uncomfortably close-quartered salon experience.”  The New Yorker

“fresh and entertaining…the artists of this fierce opera company outdid themselves yet again with a ragtag mash up of theatrical and musical entertainment punctuated by bouts of well-choreographed chaos and a true linguistic feast with hilarious dialogues in Italian, French and German…thoughtfully curated with an irreverent effervescence, yet coupled with an incredibly competent musicianship.”  Allegri con Fuoco

 The Dwarf

…the music…illustrates the humorous fairy tale quality of the story by giving its harmonies a sardonic twist…” —Anne Midgette, The New York Times, Never Say Die in Indie Opera

“…Doug Fitch…the finest opera director in the city…Fitch’s most recent gig was producing The Dwarf, by fascinating composer Yoav Gal, for the brilliant, intrepid but underfunded Vertical Player Repertory.” —Culturebot,
Opera Now

“…a twisted world whose inhabitants are prisoners of their own conceptions…”Brooklyn Heights Press

La Calisto

” And theater, movement, costume, character, is exactly what director Judith Barnes has understood in this frankly glorious mounting of the 1651 La Calisto…utilizing the al fresco urban space with matchless and unending imagination…an experience of dazzling musical theater” ConcertoNet, Midsummer Brooklyn Night’s Dream

wonderfully smart and simple…The ease with which VPR productions go beyond the novelty and charm of their locations and end up as skillful, professional shows that rival those of any opera company is a testament to how simplicity of means, modest size and musical skill are frequently the best ingredients for opera.Seen and Heard International, An Opera Grows in Brooklyn

“Judith Barnes’s direction clued us to every flirtation and confusion and was full of witty touches to warm a classicist’s heart.” Parterre Box, Sexual Perversity in Gowanus

“…Vertical Player Repertory’s concept of opera under the stars is particularly apt here, given the astronomic outcome to this god-on-human love triangle.” WQXR, Operavore

“The Baroque orchestra was led by Jennifer Peterson, and the sound of these wonderful ancient instruments without any amplification added to the magic of the evening of Saturday, July 16, with its full moon…the gods descending from the rooftops several stories above in regal regalia was sheer magic. ” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Vertical Player Repertory brings Venice to Gowanus Canal

“The Gowanus Canal has never been sexier.” Brooklyn Paper, This Opera About Lust Makes the Gowanus Sexier Than Ever

Two Best Opera of 2011 Lists Superconductor, Seen and Heard International

A View from the Bridge

“Thrilling theatre…a riveting account of the play…all the voices were big and in tune and hardly seemed ‘operatic,’ so natural and intense was the acting” Opera Today

Les contes d’Hoffmann 

“Judith Barnes clearly hit on something that sets her group apart” The New York Times

“visionary” The New York Theatre Wire

“unforgettable” The Italian Tribune

a ragtag band of misfitsParterre Box

“a company worth following” Backstage

New York Magazine Critic’s Pick

Il Tabarro

New York Times – Slideshow, Sep 2007

“exhilarating…the audience was completely drawn in to Puccini’s melodrama” Opera News

“I was in awe watching the grim action of Puccini’s opera taking place on a huge tanker…exhilarating and gritty” The Daily News

Opera News – On the Beat – IL Tabarro barges into Brooklyn, Nov 2007

New York Times – Don’t rock the boat; Opera in Progress, Sep 2007

Brooklyn Daily Eagle, – Vertical Player Repertory Presents Puccini on Red Hook Pier Waterfront, Sep 2007

Daily News, – Stevedores among their piers in opera, Sep 2007

Daily News – Puccini opera staged on Red Hook barge, Sep 2007

Der Rosenkavalier: The True Story
(Ochs Talks)

“Count on Judith Barnes’s edgy little company to give the old scenes-and-arias formula a twist” The New Yorker

“Once again, the Vertical Player Repertory has taken us ‘out of the commonplace and into the rare’ with a fresh look under the ruffled vestments of an old masterpiece.” The Brooklyn Eagle

The Brooklyn Eagle, Vertical Player Repertory presents Der Rosenkavalier


“a propulsive operatic tragedy of the first order… an intensely dramatic…tremendously affecting account of this difficult work” The Brooklyn Papers

“a very effective and moving evocation of Euripides’ tragedy…starring the impressive Judith Barnes, founder of the rep” The New York Theatre Wire

Call it garage opera. The Vertical Player Repertory performs in a small Brooklyn factory-turned-studio but has developed a following for its intense performances of unusual works.” The New York Times


“just splendid…it would be hard to think of any group anywhere creating greater delight out of an 18th century opera” Brooklyn Heights Press

“Vertical Player Repertory, the small company on Court Street which always has something new and different in the works” Brooklyn Heights Press

“beautiful music, creative and moving performances, and above all, great ideas have become the norm at Vertical Player Repertory” Brooklyn Heights Press