★★★★★ The exciting, industrious score propelled the drama along like a favourable wind and never overpowered the action or voices. An outstanding piece. OPERA NOW (Antonia Couling) review of Shackleton's Cat
★★★★ Russell Hepplewhite's music is not only atmospheric, but also allows the text to emerge with crystal clarity.
THE TIMES (Richard Morrison) review of Shackleton's Cat
Deftly done, and with highest musical standards." THE OBSERVER (Fiona Maddocks) review of Shackleton's Cat
★★★★ In this concert he was represented by The Everlasting Voices, settings of three of W B Yeats' most lyrically expressive poems. The fluent rhythms of When you are Old captured the sense of passing time, while both this and A Drinking Song were characterised by gently throbbing dissonances suggesting the poignancy of unfulfilled love. The more aspirational mood of the third song, which gives its name to the set, was evoked with no less skill, ending on a note, or rather chord, of eloquent ambiguity.
EVENING STANDARD (Barry Millington) review of Everlasting Voices
★★★★ The music by Russell Hepplewhite was gripping and still haunts the mind. A powerful new opera.
EXEUNT MAGAZINE (Roderick Dunnett) review of Laika The Spacedog
The most exciting work on the programme was Russell Hepplewhite's Urban Abstract. In three movements it was dramatic, varied and well paced with a nice flow and a strong sense of harmony. It made the most powerful use of the whole ensemble.
BACHTRACK (Jonathan Russell) review of Urban Abstract
Paradise in a Dream demanded to be heard for being simply as it was: a thing of beauty, finely crafted.
CATHOLIC HERALD (Michael White) review of Paradise: In a Dream
Hepplewhite's music, Antipodean-sunny and primary-coloured, carries the action happily. The composer's real strength lies in his succulent orchestration for just four crack musicians.
WHATSONSTAGE (Mark Valencia) review of Silver Electra
There is a practised economy to Hepplewhite's score, directed from the piano, with violin, viola and percussion combining in expansive phrases that conjure up skies, or staccato bursts that evoke the tense static of the aircraft radio.
OPERA (Erica Jeal) review of Silver Electra
It's fun, fast-moving, and entertaining, but it also tells the serious and touching story of Laika brilliantly.
OPERA NOW (Robert Thicknesse) article
★★★★ Russell Hepplewhite's lively score adds to the fun.
THE STAGE review of A Dream
A wonderfully composed work that is deceptively simple in its chamber construction but in reality vibrant, playful and complex in its interweaving of instruments and themes.
OPERAJOURNAL review of Laika the Spacedog
From the overture one is struck by the musical language of the composer- accessible, clear, original and steeped in the extraordinary tradition of English music. And instrumentally with this little ensemble the composer manages to create joy and dramatic scenes efficiently.
PROVENCE HERALD review of Laika the Spacedog
Russell Hepplewhite was able to create on just four instruments colourful orchestral sounds; conveying the feel of the different scenes in an exquisite and witty way.
OPERA PORTAL review of Laika the Spacedog
The mini musical based around the snooker was truly inspired.
YORKSHIRE TIMES review of 147
An enjoyable and unabashedly tonal composition. FANFARE MAGAZINE review of Invisible Landscapes
The music has a clear sense of direction, emotional content and sensitivity to the details of the words, including at the start and finish the 'awe and wonder' the composer requests. CHURCH MUSIC QUARTERLY MAGAZINE (RSCM)