Local Santa Cruz
"The Santa Cruz Symphony Uplifts Us Again"
"The Santa Cruz Symphony has once again done what it does best: commemorating world-famous scores and composers from the past, spotlighting distinguished contemporary musicians, and bringing audiences to the edge of their seats."
"As with all of their classical concerts, the performances highlighted remarkable technical ability, creative ingenuity, and compelling stage presence."
"The Symphony’s choices in material and artists define what makes classical music the rich art form that captivates and uplifts audiences."
"A slow, gradual crescendo emphasized how moments of pause hold as much power as movement, and had listeners spellbound."
"The audience was once again treated to Director Daniel Stewart’s innovative programming."
"Most impressive was the control of dynamics performed in all three works."
"This performance exemplified the kind of subtle control of dynamics more commonly found in commercially-produced recordings than in live performances! On this very point alone the Santa Cruz Symphony has risen to yet another important level."
"The overall effect was superb — it was a new sound experience in precise control employing minimal motion that created a floating and surreal almost mystical sonority. Very well executed!"
"Bursts of orchestral energy reinforced the idea with impressive, contrasting dynamics shaping the contours of the ideas Schubert had composed."
"The cryptic references to the previous movements were masterfully combined by Stewart with fine orchestral precision and impressive tonal balance to its very conclusion. This concert was unique and thoroughly enjoyed by the overwhelming applause!"
Performing Arts Monterey Bay
"Daniel Stewart and the strings of his Santa Cruz Symphony gave one of their best shows. I don’t remember when this ensemble of violins, violas, cello and basses sounded better."
"Stewart demonstrated commitment to and skill in preserving the character of the string quartet itself, modulating the dynamics accordingly. Likewise was the musicians’ response to his subtle phrasing and molding of the nearly 45-minute score that is notorious for undoing less than the most-seasoned ensembles who take it on. The range of dynamics ran from fortissimo to pianissimo, back and forth, as well as the ‘mezzos’ in between."
Santa Cruz Sentinel
"The rich string sound was magical."
"When Stewart broke the news that Wang would be returning to Santa Cruz in late June in an additional concert to the regular season his news was greeted with rapturous applause from the audience who were thrilled at the prospect."