Live performance excerpts

 

Live performance, May 2, 2014

Mozart - Requiem - Lacrimosa

Mozart - Requiem - Dies irae

 

Live performance, March 2, 2015

Beethoven - Piano Concerto No. 4 in G Major - Andante con moto


Reviews

‘[Die Zauberflöte] was a delight, on all fronts. Fox conducted surely, with tempos and casting that recalled René Jacobs’s Zauberflöte. The chorus sang well and the generously sized period orchestra played superbly. …Everyone was charming and idiomatic and appealing, suggesting what one might have heard back in the day at the Theater auf der Wieden. …A stylish, satisfying evening; may Clarion venture further into opera.’
- John Rockwell, Opera (UK)

‘the now sixty-year old Clarion Orchestra in its current incarnation, produced a fine reading under Steven Fox’s baton…Fox’s players achieved Mozartian gravitas and levity as needed.’
- David Shengold, Opera News

‘There’s a mystical quality, a whiff of incense, to Passion Week and, as the music ebbed and flowed, I was lulled into a wonderful, contemplative state. That was down also to the quality of the performance; expertly paced by the conductor Steven Fox, the singing was fluid and full of light and shade. Fresh from the St Petersburg and Moscow premieres, the Clarion Choir gave us its best Church Slavonic. After the encore, amid copious applause, one of the singers gave a cheery thumbs-up to someone in the audience. Well, a big thumbs-up from me too. ’
- Rebecca Franks, The Times (UK)

‘…the best example of cooperation between our countries. ’
- TV Rossiya 24 - Vesti (RU)

‘A Magnificent Discovery. This recording…boasts marvellously committed fervent singing from the Clarion Choir under Steven Fox and deserves the widest possible dissemination.’
- Eric Levi, BBC Music Magazine

‘All of [Fox’s] solo singers have exemplary tone and diction, and the choir’s blend is creamy and devoid of rough edges. …The luscious uplifting Alleluias which round off the disc’s concluding “Let all mortal flesh” will surely encourage other choirs to tackle this newly restored masterpiece.’
- Malcolm Riley, Gramophone

‘Clarion's handsome voices and the maestro's Slavic sensibilities honor Steinberg's intentions with grand singing and total conviction.’
- Philip Greenfield, American Record Guide

‘Vaulting into Spine-Tingling Territory With a Rachmaninoff Rarity…The Clarion Choir’s performance, with 26 strong singers led by the group’s artistic director, Steven Fox, was indeed stunning.’
- James Oestreich, The New York Times

‘Maximilian Steinberg’s “Passion Week” arrived in New York on Tuesday evening in a stunning performance by the Clarion Choir, conducted by Steven Fox… The work is a treasure. The Clarion forces, who specialize in early music, have been expanding their range of late, and they did so decisively here. Happily, the Clarion version of the work is being recorded this week.’
- James Oestreich, The New York Times

‘An inspired interpretation…Mr. Fox revealed the drama in the score with vivid dynamic shadings. In “Blessed Is the Man,” the “Alleluias” unfolded with characterful contrast; first solemn, then impassioned, before concluding with an introverted whisper. Intonation and pacing were exemplary throughout the performance.’
- Vivien Schweitzer, The New York Times

‘The stellar early-music Clarion Ensemble’
- Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim, The New York Times

‘Steven Fox, Clarion’s artistic director...conducted the beautifully rendered program...spirited, polished playing from the instrumentalists and a well-blended, joyous sound from the choir.'
- Vivien Schweitzer, The New York Times

‘Clarion’s esteemed director, Steven Fox’
- The New Yorker

‘An intelligently devised and lovingly offered concert...The extreme harmonies of Gesualdo’s “Moro, Lasso” showed off the singers’ assured sense of pitch and control, as they leaned into the difficult dissonances and allowed the resolutions to fall into place naturally. Under the direction of Steven Fox, the ensemble’s artistic director, tempos also took on a certain speechlike freedom that gave the text its rightful primacy and allowed the music to hover over key words.’
- Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim, The New York Times

‘[Paul] Jacobs asked the superb Clarion Choir to perform [the Bach chorale settings] a capella before each organ setting. Skillfully led by Steven Fox, the choristers sang with purity of tone and ensemble precision.’
- Barbara Jepson, The Wall Street Journal

‘What can I say about Steven Fox that I haven’t said before? Adding to my last rave review, I can attest that having experienced his recent conducting with two different orchestras, where he achieved similar impressive results, there is no questioning his ability to draw out from musicians their best possible playing. Clearly, he has a tremendous rapport with his musicians, and this ability makes him a conductor to follow.’
- Stan Metzger, Seen and Heard International

‘Under its new music director, Clarion Music Society is re-emerging as an important force in early music. Young maestro Fox took over Clarion two years ago and seems poised to usher the ensemble into an exciting new era... Fox's conducting showed a sure feeling for the elegance and drama of the music.’
- George Loomis, Musical America

‘When Bach is performed well, as it was tonight, one could almost think, “Why bother with any other music?” …a performance as perfect as the one tonight had my mind racing... The repartee between the strings and the oboe d'amores, each group in respectful conversation, was new to me. I was mesmerized by the energy, enthusiasm, passion and attention to detail displayed here …I have seen Steven Fox several times, and I must say he outdid himself in this performance. His choice of tempo, his understanding of Bach and Baroque style, and his selection of seldom-heard repertory are unexcelled.’
- Stan Metzger, Seen and Heard International

‘Steven Fox, Clarion's artistic director, led judiciously paced performances; and the terrific chorus, which also furnished the vocal soloists, produced a clear, sturdy sound...’
- James Oestreich, The New York Times

‘Technique and tone in the long program were precise, articulate and strong, with Fox in control of dynamics. Cutoffs and grand pauses were a joy. ... [The musicians succeeded] in moving the sound quality into the forceful timbres and big low notes of Eastern Europe and the Orthodox Church.'
- Leslie Kandell, The Berkshire Eagle

‘…the Clarion Choir gave a pensive and mystical performance of the 30-minute “Rothko Chapel” …The calm, sensitive performance…conveyed the simplicity and directness of this wondrously restrained music. And the audience, which had listened with uncommon contemplativeness, gave the performers a long ovation.’
- Anthony Tommasini, The New York Times

‘…the music showed imaginative word painting and a rich sonority that one hardly expects to encounter in 18th-century music. Steven Fox conducted with precision and expression… The concert introduced me to composers I have missed and showed me new sides to composers I thought I knew.’
- David Moore, American Record Guide

‘Feldman’s Rothko Chapel… absolutely blew me away. From the four ovations it received, I think the rest of the audience felt similarly. Rothko Chapel became a religious experience …the ethereal voices of the Clarion Choir. …The piece’s unimaginably gentle sonorities were handled with tremendous care by Axiom, but it was the Clarion Choir’s accuracy and blend that transformed this performance into a transcendent experience.’
- Jake Cohen, Consequence of Sound

‘Fox and his choristers performed [Bach’s choral settings] artistically, their beautiful voices sounding out ideally...’
- Dennis Rooney, Musical America

‘…the Clarion Music Society, one of New York’s most important early music ensembles… Maestro Fox is emerging as one of New York City’s most promising young conductors. Keep your eyes peeled for him.’
- Kent Tritle, WQXR