Press and What the Critics Say
The voices rang out with resplendent confidence, and the sopranos had no apparent difficulty reaching the cruel and challenging high B's in the piece. The chorus's performance was the best part of the concert….the thunderous power of this unique masterpiece never fails to stir the blood, and the ovation was loud, long and well deserved.
The Baltimore Choral Arts Society, prepared by director Tom Hall, rose to the occasion impressively…the chorus sustained a smooth, full-bodied sound and articulated with admirable clarity.
The Baltimore Choral Arts Society has always sounded good here, but this performance was riveting. When the chorus can match the accuracy and intensity of the vocal soloists in Beethoven's cruel writing, phrase for phrase, you are hearing something extraordinary.
The Baltimore Choral Arts Society responded to the conductor with vibrant singing.
The choristers were attentive to matters of blend and tonal nuance and sang with considerable expressiveness.
The women of the Baltimore Choral Arts Society, singing through open doors on an upper level of the hall, spun out the final wordless song exquisitely.
The audience's enjoyment of the work was enhanced by the chorus' beautiful diction and the perfect balance between instruments and voices.
The chorus as a whole responded impressively. And when Hall drove his forces along in the most dramatic, propulsive passages, the results were truly stirring.
Baltimore Choral Arts made its debut in Gilliam Concert Hall, in the Carl Murphy Fine Arts Center at Morgan State University. The assemblage for this concert was staggering. Headlining the program was Dave Brubeck and members of his legendary Quartet. They were joined by soloists Amy Pfrimmer, soprano; Mark Bieeke, tenor; and Kevin Deas, baritone. Also appearing was The Morgan State University Choir, with Dr. Eric Conway, Director.
The program began with the combined singers performing the beautiful three-movement “Motet, Op. 29, No. 2,” “Create in Me a Clean Heart,” (Psalm 51, vv 10,11,12) by Johannes Brahms, sung in the original German. The choral blend and balance was exquisite.
The highpoint of the concert was the Baltimore premier of Dave Brubeck's "To Hope! A Celebration." Scored for three soloists, full chorus, orchestra and jazz quartet, the work was conducted by Russell Gloyd who has conducted the many symphonic and choral appearances of the Dave Brubeck Quartet. This composition was wonderful and, hopefully before too long, the work will be recorded.
The Baltimore Choral Arts Society brought that movie and music together at Meyerhoff Symphony Hall Sunday night and produced one of the season's most memorable experiences… The performance achieved a profound beauty as involving as the painful, poignant images on the screen…The chorus sang with great sensitivity and discipline.
Sunday, 09 March 2014
3:00 PM • Towson United Methodist Church
Tom Hall leads the Chorus in a program spanning the poetic choral repertoire, from the 16th century to works of Durufle and Lauridsen, and leading to selections from the iconic musicals of Irving Berlin and Leonard Bernstein. Internationally-renowned soprano Janice Chandler-Eteme joins Tom and the Chorus for this exciting performance.
The Baltimore Choral Arts Society, under the direction of Tom Hall, has clearly arrived as one of the finest cultural institutions in Maryland and the nation.