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2014 › Critics › Arts & Culture

Best Choral Wrangler: Brent Baldwin

Big doesn't bother Brent Baldwin. A three-part, two-hour 19th century oratorio on the creation of the cosmos? No problem. A seven-section 20th century experimental epic translation of Confucius lasting seven hours? Sure. A 12-movement riff on Mozart's Requiem, with contemporary composers filling in the gaps left empty when Wolfgang Amadeus died? Bring it. The fact that this fearless leader of Texas Choral Consort has not only tackled these monumental projects and more, but typically done so while conducting an orchestra of two to three dozen instrumentalists and a choir of up to 150 singers marks him as a master of choral coordination. He's able to draw from these massed voices booming thunder, angelic sweetness, and dying whispers on a breeze, with a striking richness of balance and harmony. Bigger isn't always better, but when Baldwin is wrangling the choir, it may well be best.

Texas Choral Consort
Texas Choral Consort, 512/372-3233,

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