News and Reviews
REVIEW March 8, 2016 Handel Choir excels in Baltimore premiere of 'Path of Miracles'
"Listening to the Talbot work unfold at the Baltimore Basilica, I got the distinct impression that this ensemble has become the cool chorus in town."
"Khaefi had the singers burrowing into the notes, from the out-of-the-depths rumblings in the first movement on through exquisitely harmonized passages in the third ...
Click here for the full review from Tim Smith of The Baltimore Sun/Artsmash (posted March 8, 2016).
February 16, 2016 UPDATE: Due to circumstances beyond our control, the Thursday March 3 Preview Concert is CANCELLED. We regret any inconvenience. The Saturday March 5 concert, Path of Miracles, will proceed as scheduled.
REVIEW December 15, 2015 A sampling of "Messiah" from Handel Choir, BSO
"... The rewards began with the very able Handel Period Instrument Orchestra, providing a subtly colorful, expressive foundation.
"Tempos set by conductor Arian Khaefi provided momentum, but breathing room, too. ..."
Click here for the full review from Tim Smith of The Baltimore Sun/Artsmash (posted December 15, 2015).
December 3, 2015 Handel Choir singer and WCBM 680 AM talk radio host Bruce Elliott interviews Handel Choir Artistic Director & Conductor Arian Khaefi
REVIEW Saturday April 25, 2015 A warm embrace for Distant Bells!
"... well-balanced, expressively nuanced singing from the chorus (and soloists within it) ..."
"... the sweetness of the sound and the legato phrasing ... cast quite a spell."
"[Artistic Director and Conductor Arian] Khaefi, in his two seasons at the helm, has built upon the crucial work of his predecessor Melinda O'Neal, continuing to hone the ensemble and expand the repertoire."
Click here for the full review from Tim Smith of The Baltimore Sun on Handel Choir's Distant Bells Saturday April 25, 2015 (posted April 27th).
FEATURE April 15, 2015 Handel Choir to cap 80th season with concert of diverse works.
By Larry Perl for the Towson Times and Baltimore Messenger
June 14, 2014 Handel Choir's Star-Spangled Weekend
"The choristers tackled the daunting score confidently. They handled the Russian liturgical text with apparent ease ... they also maintained clarity and cohesiveness of articulation... Above all, Khaefi drew from the singers admirable warmth of expression..."
"'I tried to choose repertoire that would reflect the different ethnic communities and faiths,' Khaefi, 29, said ...
"Born in Rome in 1984 of Iranian parents and raised in the United States, Khaefi came to this area in 2012. With bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a doctorate from the University of Michigan, he was appointed director of choral activities at Towson University and continues to hold that post."
"The choir ... maintained a well-balanced sound and articulated with admirable clarity during a matinee [performance of Handel's Messiah] ...
"... the first half of the program ... was enough to reveal Khaefi's calm control and firm sense of rhythmic propulsion."
July 30, 2013 Symphony of Time: Nerd Nostalgia at the BSO
"...the BSO brought the beautiful music of a beloved game series to life, and introduced Baltimore-area [Legend of] Zelda fans to one of the city's premier cultural institutions."
"Melinda O'Neal, in her final concert as artistic director ..., conducted an impressive performance of the Requiem ... that communicated its bittersweet lyricism and the ingenious cohesion of its architectural shape."
"... the music-making ... emphatically reaffirmed how much O'Neal's nine-year tenure has meant to the development of the choir, one of Baltimore's oldest musical institutions."
Handel Choir of Baltimore PRESS RELEASE April 6, 2013
"We were deeply honored by the number of highly qualified candidates who were interested in becoming Handel Choir’s next Artistic Director," said Leslie Greenwald, President of the Choir’s Board of Trustees, ... "It was a difficult decision, in part because of the incredibly high bar set by Melinda O’Neal. We are very excited to work with Arian in our 79th season."
Photo by Will Kirk.