‘Messiah’ by the Downtown Singers: A sparkling tradition continues

Reviewed by Leo Cotnoir

Before moving to Binghamton a decade ago, I lived for many years in Washinton, D.C. The nation’s capital is home to some of the best professional choruses in the world, so I heard many outstanding performances of Handel’s “Messiah.”  The Downtown Singers could share the stage with any of them (full disclosure: my wife, Glenda, was in the alto section at The Forum in Binghamton). Not only was the singing splendid but the orchestra, except for a few intonation issues among the second violins, was superb, nicely underplaying both the soloists and the chorus. In part thanks to the particularly strong low strings, the outnumbered male voices were never overwhelmed by the sopranos and altos as is often the case in amateur choirs. Read the rest of this entry »

‘Amahl’ singers share real meaning of Christmas

Reviewed by Tony Villecco

This past weekend, the Binghamton University Music Department in collaboration with Tri-Cities Opera produced a lovely adaptation of Gian Carlo Menotti’s one-act seasonal masterpiece, Amahl and the Night Visitors. Performances were Saturday and Sunday (Dec. 11 and 12) in the Anderson Center’s Chamber Hall. Read the rest of this entry »

‘Alto on the Loose’ heats up Firehouse Stage

 Reviewed by David L. Schriber

What do you call an alto who can sing (not just “hit” but really sing) a high C, yet also can visit notes in the baritone range? Answer:  Hilerie Klein-Rensi. She is well known as a local classical soloist but is equally at home with musical theater, as her cabaret routine “Alto on the Loose” proved convincingly Sunday (Dec. 5) at the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage in Johnson City. Read the rest of this entry »

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