NZ Herald: "spectacular and highly entertaining ... In the role of Salieri ... Michael Hurst summons the epic passions of Greek tragedy and his anguish over the mediocrity of his musical talent carries all the existential weight of Job's protest to God. In lighter moments Hurst's superb vocal inflections capture the sardonic bitterness of a social climber who masks his provincial origins by mocking the vulgarity of his bourgeois companions and proudly asserting the superiority of his refined sensibilities".
Theatreview: "Michael Hurst, in the pitoval role of Salieri, is playwright Peter Shaffer's textual instrument, delivering with unfaltering energy and intelligence the existential questions posed in the brilliant invention that is Amadeus. ... Hurst is magnificent, sometimes coiled as a spring of Machiavellian manipulation and evil wound up and ready to erupt in an intense soliloquy (something of which he is a master), other times oiling the audience as he addresses us, the 'ghosts of the future' seeking not forgiveness for his Salieri, but understanding. ... it is a most entertaining night out. ... with the virtuoso performance of Michael Hurst as Salieri offering a masterclass in energy, character distillation and conviction. It will be one of the most talked-about theatre pieces of the year".
NBR: "the brilliant Michael Hurst ... is a force to be reckoned with. For his performance alone, Amadeus is worth the watch. He is compelling, dripping with resentment and shaking with passion that wages war not with Mozart but through him toward God".
Broadway World: " a well deserved standing ovation. ... Michael Hurst [is] the 'master of the piece' as the self obsessed Salieri tormented by desire for personal fame and fortune, veraciously replicating the implications of the unhealthy side of the Greek definition of self obsessed desire and love; 'philautia'. Salieri's convictions and beliefs are extinguished and exchanged in a bid for what he cannot have; Mozart's talent".
GayExpress: "Must See Mozart ... rests heavily on Hurst's Salieri and his brooding rage. His performance feels weighty and dark and is balanced perfectly by McCormack’s dancing, pompous Mozart and Madison Nonoa’s elegant embodiment of both men’s muse, Katerina Cavalieri"
Te Karere: "Michael Hurst played the powerful, brooding lead, holding my attention from the word ‘go’ … The highlight for me was Salieri. There was so much light, shade and depth to him, just on the edge of madness, that thin line where you find brilliance. While the same may not be said of your legacy, at least in this incarnation, you are immortal".
Theatre Scenes: "The powerful production wouldn’t have been such a success without its ‘dream team’ cast. The master of the piece is legendary theatre actor Michael Hurst, who crafted the old and broken Salieri so perfectly. Dancer and Choreographer Ross McCormack made his acting debut as the gifted Mozart. His portrayal of Mozart is fascinating as he brings a unique quirky aspect to the character ".