Baroque Christmas ~ Handel and Bach conducted by Jonathan Cohen with the Handel & Haydn Society

"For true musical athleticism, one needed to wait a spell for soprano Robin Johannsen, who was the featured soloist in a pair of works by George Frideric Handel plus J. S. Bach’s Cantata No. 51 “Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen.” By just about any measure, Johannsen is an exceptional singer: for warmth and beauty of tone, evenness of projection, clarity of articulation, and lightness of touch, she leaves little to be desired.

In Handel’s Silete venti she drew impressively on all those qualities, particularly in the closing pair of arias with their energetic and sometimes stormy melismas. But Johannsen’s singing wasn’t just about showing off. She shaped the end of the opening recitative with enchanting clarity and engaged in a series of lilting exchanges with the orchestra in the first aria, “Dulcis amor.”
Jonathan Blumhofer, Boston Classical, December 16, 2022

"Handel’s “Silete venti” for soprano and orchestra relays the ecstasy of steadfast faith. To her featured arias, guest soprano Robin Johannsen brought nimble vocal delicacy. Her tone was bright and clear, with vibrant trills injecting live-wire intensity. Arpeggios and vocal flourishes expressed a longing for devotional bliss in “Dulcis amor.” The “Date serta” was a true exaltation, the urgency carrying into the florid “Alleluia.”

Handel’s “Gloria” coursed with a turbulence that gradually danced toward light. Johannsen’s soft tone inspired an emotional gravity in “Et in terra pax,” and she laid bare the desolation of the “Domine Deus.” In support, Cohen pushed the tempo to release the pent-up tensions of the “Qui tollis.”

A gentler touch in Bach’s Cantata 51, “Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen,” channeled reverence as much as grandeur. Johannsen had an equal partner in trumpeter Steven Marquardt, who deftly wove his clarion line around hers. Johannsen’s ringing high notes likewise made “Wir beten zu dem Tempel an” into a warm song of praise."
Aaron Keebaugh,, December 16, 2022

"Mozart in Milan" CD of Mozart's "Exsultate, jubilate" and surrounding music conducted by Giulio Prandi with Coro e Orchestra Ghislieri

Here, it's [Exsultate, jubilate] sung by Robin Johannsen, an American soprano whose European career has included stints with René Jacobs and the Freiburger Barockorchester as well as the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin. Johannsen's technique is astounding—her high C rivals that of Elisabeth Schwarzkopf. Her voice is energetic, forthright, beautiful. This "historically informed" performance, with Giulio Prandi and the Coro e Orchestra Ghislieri, his award-winning ensemble, highlights instrumental lines and colors not often heard.
Jason Victor Serinus,, February 9, 2023

"The motet is here sung by the US soprano, Robin Johannsen. Charles Burney’s description of Rauzzini as having a ‘sweet and extensive voice, a rapid brilliance of execution great expression and an exquisite and judicious taste’ might easily have been tailored to Johannsen’s performance, which is, quite simply, one of the very best of this frequently performed showpiece I have heard. The ability to cope with the bravura writing of the opening aria and concluding ‘Alleluja’ are not so uncommon, but what is rare is the care and insight Johannsen brings to colouring the text. One example must suffice; the final line of the second, lyrical aria concludes with a perfectly executed trill on the final word ‘cor’, which the singer allows to swell slightly, thus bringing added fervour to the final plea – ‘console our feelings from which our hearts sigh’."
Brian Robins,, February 6, 2023

The seventeen-year-old Mozart wrote Exsultate, jubilate for the soprano castrato Venanzio Rauzzini, who sang the four-movement motet on 17 January 1773 in Sant’Antonio Abate. Soprano Robin Johannsen delivers a moving performance of the original Milan version (Mozart revised the work in 1779 for performances on Trinity Sunday and Christmas in Salzburg).
Daniel Floyd,, February 22, 2023

Handel's "Judas Maccabeaus" conducted by Nicholas McGegan with the Philharmonia Baroque in California

"She was splendidly matched by soprano Robin Johannsen, whose Israelitish Woman offered a wealth of pointed, crystalline singing. The Act 2 aria “From mighty kings he took the spoil,” a virtuoso display of technical prowess and expressive specificity, was only one delight among many."
Joshua Kosman, San Francisco Chronicle, “Philharmonia’s ‘Judas Maccabeus’ looks beyond the titular hero,” December 9, 2019

"To soprano Robin Johannsen, the Israelitish Woman, were handed the most extensive runs and coloratura, which she handled with ease while also spinning fine legato phrases in arias such as 'Come, ever smiling liberty.'"
Michael Zwieback, San Francisco Classical Voice,  "Judas Maccabeus Reigns Victorious With Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra," December 10, 2019

"While the gentlemen were superb, it was the ladies — radiant soprano Robin Johannsen as the Israelitish Woman and velvety mezzo-soprano Sara Couden as the Israelitish Man — who performed the main heavy lifting among the principals. The two characters function as high- profile everyday Israeli figures.

With a pleasantly soft, clear voice and honeyed textures, Johannsen was sublime in her Act 1 air 'Pious orgies, pious airs,' 'O liberty, thou choicest treasure,' and 'Come ever-smiling liberty' and she had more gems in store, including the Act 2 air 'From mighty kings’ and her Act 3 air 'So shall the lute and harp awake.'”
James Ambroff-Tahan, San Francisco Examiner,  “Philharmonia Baroque’s ‘Judas Maccabaeus’ a triumph,” Dec. 6, 2019

Purcell's "King Arthur" at the Berliner Staatsoper unter den Linden with René Jacobs

"Her fellow soprano, Robin Johannsen (“A Priest, Honour, A Shepherdess, She, A Siren, A Nymph”) was another standout singer, her sweet, clear voice delightful to listen to and dramatically effective, and her diction convincingly British (though the singer herself is American)."
Elyse Lyon,, November 10, 2019

Handel's "Il Parnasso in festa" conducted by Andrea Marcon in Amsterdam's Concertgebouw

"The revelation was American soprano Robin Johannsen, superbly agile and fresh-sounding—but also expressive—in Clio’s taxing music."
David Shengold, Opera News, "Il Parnasso in festa," February 2017

Beethoven's "Leonore" on European tour with the Freiburger Barockorchester and René Jacobs

Robin Johannsen sang an impressive Marzelline with pristine musicality and appropriate pertness.
Jonathan Sutherland,, “Leonore 1805 a boon for Beethoven buffs in Vienna,” October 26, 2017

Robin Johannsen gave us a beguiling Marzelline, the voice seemingly floating on air through the hall, with a liquid legato matching the crystalline tone., “Original Thoughts: Leonore (1805) at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam,” October 29, 2017

Amor vien dal destino ~ Staatsoper Berlin im Schillertheater

“Robin Johannsen is responsible for some of the evening's most seductive and accomplished singing as unhappy sister Giuturna.”
Shirley Apthorp, Financial Times, April 27, 2016

“As both Venus and Giuturna, Robin Johannsen brought a luminous soprano and an at times instrumental quality to her arias, such as in the Act Two number “Turn the captain back to shore,” in which she begs Turnus to turn back from the coast (Lavinia) to the shore (herself).”
Rebecca Schmid,, April 28, 2016

“Robin Johannsen is responsible for some of the evening's most seductive and accomplished singing as unhappy sister Giuturna.”
Shirley Apthorp, Financial Times, April 27, 2016

"In her twin roles of Venus and Giuturna, Robin Johannsen had more prominent numbers, through which she was able to display all the emotion and technique of her refined soprano. Giuturna, driven near-insane by her forbidden love for Turno, repeated three times her metaphorical helmsman's aria. Johannsen especially shone in Venus's prologue lament arias, in which, accompanied by oboe, she fears for the fate of her son, Aeneas."
Waltraut Anna Kautz,, "Love comes from fate," April 27, 2016

CD Recording “Die Entführung aus dem Serail” conducted by René Jacobs
with the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, harmonia mundi - October 2015

“[Jacobs's] Entführung unfolds with potent theatrical energy. It aims to entertain, to bring the situations to continuously animated life...I found it an uninterrupted pleasure to listen to the aria singing of Robin Johannsen's bright-toned, intensely involved heroine.”
Opera, February 2016

“Johannsen, though, is a superb Konstanze, with impeccably expressive coloratura and a beautiful silvery tone reminiscent at times of Anneliese Rothenberger on Josef Krips’s recording (EMI, 10/70).”
Tim Ashley, Gramophone, October 2015

“Robin Johannsen is the very excellent soprano who sings Konstanze...Johannsen copes with the formidable demands of the role of Konstanze extremely well.”
Iain Burnside, BBC Radio 3, October 31, 2015

“Robin Johannsen sings Konstanze, and her lovely, pristine voice is a pleasure to behold, with its impeccable tuning and precise trill.”
Robert Levine,, December 2015

Emma und Eginhard ~ Staatsoper Berlin im Schillertheater (conducted by René Jacobs)

“Of a solid cast, Robin Johannsen’s Emma stands out for her easy purity and well-rounded musicality.”
Shirley Apthorp, Financial Times, April 28, 2015

“American soprano Robin Johannsen led the pack as Emma. Her elegant voice gently wafted over the Schiller Theater (hardly the best place to hear Baroque opera). With freshness and legato, she gave the evening’s most fully defined performance, from her precise and measured coloratura to the warm notes of her lower range during the tender ”alphabet of love” that she sings with Eginhard.”
A.J. Goldmann, Opera News, July 2015

“In dolce amore” ~ World premiere CD recording of Arias and Cantatas
by Antonio Caldara with Alessandro De Marchi and Academia Montis Regalis

“A pair of warbling recorders adorns Sabina’s touching siciliano ‘Numi, se giusti siete’ from Adriano in Siria (1732), and Johannsen sings with limpid sweetness in Emilia’s ‘In dolce amore’ from Scipione Africano (1735). There are judicious contrasts in dramatic situations and musical moods, such as the unjustly condemned Dircea’s chromatically expressive ‘Se tutti i mali miei’ from Demofoonte (1733) in comparison to the flirtatious comedy of Dorina’s ‘Una donna’ from I disingannati (1729).
“Academia Montis Regalis and Alessandro De Marchi accompany with robust directness or lighter delicacy as required, and Johannsen’s versatile singing helps to reveal an enriching glimpse of Caldara’s virtues.”
David Vickers, Gramophone, September 2014

Bamberg Symphony (conducted by Ari Rasilainen)
Orff Carmina Burana

“Robin Johannsen was a deliciously cheeky soprano, all coquettishness and swooning.”
Gavin Plumley, Entartete Musik, July 21, 2013

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (conducted by Marin Alsop)
Orff Carmina Burana

“There was radiant singing from soprano Robin Johannsen, especially in 'Stetit puella,'”
Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun, June 7, 2013

“Kudos to tenor John Tessier, who sang his high notes in the 'Roasting Swan,' and to soprano Robin Johannsen, who nailed 'Dulcissime,'”
Robert Battey, The Washington Post, June 10, 2013

Die Zauberflöte ~ The Vlaamse Opera

“Robin Johannsen could conjure with her sound.  She was a beautiful Pamina.”
Francois van den Anker,, December 13, 2012

“No, as far as the characters are concerned, the largest applause is for Olga Pudova as Queen of the night, Robin Johannsen as Pamina, Mirella Hagen in the role of Papagena and the three ladies…”
Guido Lauwaert,, December 13, 2012

“The soloists were all excellent. Tamino (Rainer Trost) has a fresh youthful tenor voice, Pamina (Robin Johannsen) is sweetly subtle where necessary but also acts with a strong personality.”
Lucrèce Maeckelbergh,, December 17, 2012

“Where this production excels, is in the vocal casting.  The cast gets a top level.  The young couple Tamino (Rainer Trost) and Pamina (Robin Johannsen) sing effortlessly and work convincingly through the crazy adventures.”
Geert Van Der Speeten ,, December 14, 2012

“...some excellent singers: Robin Johannsen, extraordinary Pamina...”
Nicolas Blanmont,, December 17, 2012

“Their [Rainer Trost and Robin Johannsen] vocal health and their flawless technique, this art of legato which is the basis of singing Mozart, have confirmed the reputation of talent scout that Aviel Cahn has earned since his appointment as the head of the Vlaamse Opera.”
Christophe Rizoud,, December 15, 2012

“Furthermore, the American soprano Robin Johannsen as Pamina is a pearl.  The manner in which she sings “Ach ich fühls, es ist verschwunden” – an aria that is quite wrongly less known to the public – is magnificent... In this aria, Johannsen explains feelings of despair and sounds more desperate by the minute.”
Bert Hertogs,, December 12, 2012

“Most convincing is the duo Tamino-Pamina of Rainer Trost and Robin Johannsen.”
Stephan Moens, De Morgen, December 14, 2012

DVD & CD - Dynamic

“As Isifile, Giasone's lawfully wedded wife from back home, Robin Johannsen pours forth touching laments in a rich, vibrant soprano.”
Matthew Gurewitsch, Opera News, September 22, 2012

“…others who shine are soprano Robin Johannsen's Isifile and tenor Emilio Pons (Egeo /Sole) as well as countertenor, Christophe Dumaux's, Giasone itself, which is grave yet immediate.”
Mark Sealy, Classical Net, 2012

Brugge MAFestival
Handel ~ Dixit dominus (Conducted by Alessandro De Marchi)

“The sopranos Roberta Invernizzi and the American Robin Johannsen were another story.  They competed for the crown, exactly the way it was at the start of the eighteenth century in Italy, where opera was the most popular genre.  Johannsen proved herself to virtuosity, energy, agility, and endurance...”
Greet Van’t veld,, August 5, 2011

“The American Robin Johannsen, with her pure, powerful voice, was able to bring everyone to heavenly spheres.”
Patrick Pieters,, August 6, 2011

“Soprano Robin Johannsen was a discovery for me, a round, warm, and engaging voice.”
Lucrèce Maeckelbergh,, August 20, 2011

Oregon Bach Festival
Handel Ode to St. Cecilia (conducted by Matthew Halls)

“Soloist Robin Johannsen’s brilliant and supple soprano rang out marvelously…”
James Bash,, July 13, 2011

“Johannsen sang with ease and beauty, ornamenting much of her music and singing the rapid passages with aplomb.”
Marilyn Farwell, Register-Guard, July 10, 2011

Purcell Dido and Aeneas (conducted by Monica Huggett)
Belinda & the First Witch

“Following Robin Johannsen’s brilliant opening arioso, the chorus’ “Banish Sorrow” was moving…In Act I, Johannsen skillfully portrayed an earnest and spirited Belinda with magnificent vocal shimmer and clarity that soared through melody and story line, thanks to her evident sensitivity to Purcell’s brilliant marriage of text, melody and harmonic movement.  In Act II, she adjusted her skilled instrument to embrace a timbre riddled with deviousness. “
Catherine Olson, Register-Guard, June 30, 2011

“Equally evocative and flexible was the singing of Robin Johannsen in the role of Belinda (Dido’s lady in waiting) and as the First Witch.”
James Bash,, June 29, 2011

Haydn’s Die Jahreszeiten ~ O.T. Theater Rotterdam (Staged Version - Conducted by Christopher Moulds)

“The American Johannsen is a farmer’s dream woman: young, strong and with a disarmingly fresh, natural voice. Her singing alone is worth making the trip to Rotterdam’s Nieuwe Luxor Theater.”
Bela Luttmer, De Volkskrant, May 24, 2011

“As cheerfully and divinely as she may sing, soprano Robin Johannsen’s farmer girl ultimately falls prey to a guerrilla fighter.”
Floris Don, NRC Handelsblad, May 26, 2011

“In particular the young soprano Robin Johannsen has a clear, compelling voice. With painted red lips and a cheerful smile, the diva romps over the stage as a real farm girl. Her body moves just as gracefully as the runs in her arias.”
Rolinde Hoorntje,, May 24th, 2011

“Robin Johannsen (Hanne) is a discovery: what a gracious and expressive appearance and what a clear voice!”
Rudolf Hunnik,, May 27, 2011

“With soprano Robin Johannsen, tenor Tom Randle and bass Tim Mirfin, Haydn’s ode to nature had a great cast … With her sleek, pure timbre, Johannsen was an ideal farmer’s daughter.”
Anthony Fiumara, Trouw, May 28, 2011

Dallas Symphony
Messiah (conducted by Helmuth Rilling)

“Soprano Robin Johannsen has a stage presence that sparkles. Her voice shimmers.”
Sally-Page Stuck,, April 15, 2011

“Soprano Robin Johannsen had a bright gleam on a warm core of sound.”
Scott Cantrell,, April 15, 2011

Messiah ~ Sven-David Sandström
CD - Carus-Verlag
(Johannsen, Constantinescu, Fallon, Nagy; Festivalensemble Stuttgart, Rilling.)

“The technical demands on the soloists are high; they have to execute quite a lot of coloratura, which they do with aplomb. The two female soloists in particular are very good and Robin Johannsen’s Behold, a virgin shall conceive is masterly.”
Göran Forsling,, June 2010

Il Giasone ~ De Vlaamse Opera

“Soprano Robin Johannsen sings the final song of the tragic Isifile so beautifully that it hurts.”
Floris Don, NRC Handelsblad, May 3, 2010

“For those, the American soprano, Robin Johannsen as Isifile/Hypsipyle, young girl in love, deploys celestial high notes and a lower register to break hearts.  In a three penny dress with her twins around her breasts, she is magnificent.”
Caroline Alexander,, May 18, 2010

“The American soprano Robin Johannsen put forward her gifts as a tragedienne in the heart-breaking laments of Hysipyle…”
Jean Lucas, Luxemburger Wort, May 17, 2010

“The music was sung by splendid young soloists...The American Robin Johannsen as the legitimate spouse of Giasone, Isifile, has a warm soprano, expressive, and straightforward.”
Lucas Huybrechts,, May 2, 2010

“The work of the leading countertenor must be classified as sensational…and the same for the unfortunate ‘Isifile’ of the soprano Robin Johannsen, with a crystalline voice and impeccable intonation in the most serious role of this work.”
Jorge Binaghi,, May 2010

“The most dense and credible figure, the queen of Lemnos, a tender and combative Isifile, whose last lament represents the climax of the opera…. Federico Maria Sardelli and Mariame Clément have at their disposal an ideal cast: the young singers assembled by the Vlaamse Opera know… how to perform and they give without reserve…and the sweet and ethereal Isifile of Robin Johannsen, so touching in her laments.”
Bernard Schreuders,, May 11, 2010

“Medea’s opponent Isifile, beautifully performed by the American soprano Robin Johannsen, stands for the serious in this opera.  It is hers to win back Jason, bring him to reason in a very heartfelt last aria in which she asks to be tortured.”
Bert Hertogs,, May 12, 2010

“In every respect the French countertenor Christophe Dumaux as Giasone and the vocally strong American soprano Robin Johannsen as the constant Isifile were a dream pair.”
Lonneke Retger, Volkskrant, May 3, 2010

“The rest of the cast sang, however, more than outstandingly, whereby the leading players particularly excelled: Medea shone with a large range, Isifile [Robin Johannsen] sounded especially emotional in her lamenti and Giasone himself convinced effortlessly and applied gorgeous accents.”
Jan-Jakob Delanoye, Cutting Edge, May 1, 2010

Davidis pugna et victoria ~ Alessandro Scarlatti
(Invernizzi, Johannsen, Oro, Akselberg, Abete; Academia Montis Regalis, De Marchi.)

“American soprano Robin Johannsen's clean, limpid sound is perfectly suited to Baroque music.  As Jonathan, she collaborates beautifully with her two co-stars.”
Drew Minter, Opera News Online, January 2010

“Johannsen’s is a crystal-clear soprano with a beautiful tone and as such is well matched to David, sung by soprano Roberta Invernizzi.”
Ed Breen, Musical, October 14, 2009

“The oratorio, a learned dramatisation of the story of David and Goliath, is given a crisp performance by Academia Montis Regalis ...The opposing attitudes of the courageous Jonathan... and melancholic Saul... are sung sensitively by Robin Johannsen and Martin Oro.”
Gramophone Magazine, December 2009

Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (conducted by Robert Page)
Messiah ~ Handel

“That quality [coloratura] was supplied in spades by soprano Robin Johannsen, who sang 'Rejoice greatly O Daughter of Zion' at an astonishingly fast tempo and clear as a bell.”
Mark Kanny, The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, December 12, 2009

Oregon Bach Festival
Messiah ~ Handel

“Soprano Robin Johannsen sang “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion” with ardency.  Her voice was shimmering.”
Tyler Kinnear, The Register Guard, July 14, 2009

Messiah ~ Sandström

“Soprano Robin Johannsen delivered “Behold, a Virgin Shall Conceive” and other arias with radiance and power.”
Terry McQuilkin, The Register Guard, July 21, 2009