Quotes from Conductors and Clients
With great joy I learned that you are starting a School with music at its core. My experience with the Pacific Boychoir and their excellent leadership is unforgotten. I was very impressed how quickly the Choir could adjust to the difficult parts in the War Requiem by Benjamin Britten. I simply love the idea to set a good example with a new school. In the past I had the joy of founding the children choir of the Dresden Philharmonic and later on the one of the Gewandhaus in Leipzig. If parents and teachers would know how much easier it is to educate children who are disciplined through music making the whole world would be full of children choirs.
— Maestro Kurt Masur, Music Director Emeritus, New York Philharmonic. Masur conducted Britten's War Requiem with the San Francisco Symphony and Chorus.
How inspiring it was for Kronos to be on stage with you and those amazing young people you are nurturing and training so beautifully. Your work, expertise and dedication are totally inspiring!
— David Harrington, Kronos Quartet
Contributing mightily was the Oakland-based Pacific Boychoir, whose musical sophistication and quality of sound were astonishing. The 55 plus singers not only nailed the complex rhythmic pattern exactly, but did so in perfectly coordinated swaying movements.
— Chris Pasles, Los Angeles Times; re: concert at Dorothy Chandler Pavilion with Dmitri Hvorostovsky and the Philharmonia of Russia, Constantine Orbelian conducting "Songs of the War Years" in the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Los Angeles
That is one of my favorite songs. I was honored enough to interview the gentleman that wrote that song many times on my radio show. He would have loved that. I had chills from the beginning. I want to hear a million other songs from you.
— Howard Stern, on America's Got Talent
Standing in straight lines behind the orchestra is the Pacific Boychoir, prepared by its founding director, visionary Kevin Fox. Similar to the Vienna Boys Choir in music education and performance skill, this Oakland-based Academy can swell with pride to have been selected for this leg of the Hvorostovsky tour.
— San Francisco Sentinel, reviewing the same concert, but performed a week later in San Francisco, Davies Symphony Hall
The sound that these boys produce is of a quality that I have not heard in any group of young singers performing in the States at present. This is combined with secure intonation, sensitive blend, strong musicianship, and a rigid discipline which never inhibits the pure joy that these boys invest in their singing. I am sure that over the next few years, the Boychoir and their Music Director Kevin Fox will become even more in demand as performers throughout the world.
— Maestro Donald Palumbo, Chorus Master, Lyric Opera of Chicago
The group boasts youngsters who have been carefully trained both physically and vocally in the art of singing. They're not just gathering to sing and have fun; they really are serious about music making.
— Maestro Vance George, Director Emeritus, San Francisco Symphony Chorus
This is an impressive young ensemble, poised and well-trained, with riveted focus on their director and the music.
— Bruce Lamott, Director, Philharmonia Baroque Chorale, in San Francisco Classical Voice
The sheer sonic experience was chilling. The full, powerful sound - clear and in-tune - nearly brought tears to my eyes...For me, the most compelling part of the performance was the ninth movement, "Blagosloven yesi, Ghospodi" (Blessed art Thou, O Lord). This is a dramatic telling of Christ's resurrection, in which separate quatrains narrating the events are introduced by the verse, "Blessed art Thou, O Lord; teach me Thy statutes." Toward the end, this refrain gives way to the doxology. The choir's performance was enthralling. Fox perfectly balanced the drones and hums in individual voice parts against the dynamic parts in the others, masterfully conjuring up the sense of divine, cosmic mystery described in this movement.
— San Francisco Classical Voice; re: 2007 Rachmaninoff Vespers performance
"Indeed to negotiate with the Town Hall administrators, the hotel owners, the restaurant owners, the press, the TV personnel to advertise, and so on and so forth, was somewhat exhaustive. But I must confess that my whole energy of before, and indeed more was already again in my soul at the end of the concert: I had already had my whole compensation, a superabundant compensation. May God pay for you for everything, for your art which is unique. Some day perhaps we meet again: it will always be some glorious day. We are united in love of mankind. The words being not sufficient... Long live you all!"
— Concert presenter in Brasil
"Wow! You came, you sang, you conquered!!! I haven’t seen the Congregation give an ovation like that in quite some time."
—Larry Marietta, First Congregeational Church, Berkeley, February 2009.
"Thank you so much for performing! You did a great job on a variety of repertoire, filling the hall with your wonderful sounds. I know your rehearsal period was short for this concert, and you pulled it together hardily. The audience was clearly impressed."
—Susan Swerdlow, Choral Co-Director, The College Preparatory School, March 2007.
"I don’t know if you were aware, but at the end of each performance, two of your boys – different each night, I think – held the basement doors open to let the adult choristers exit the stairwell. It was so unexpected, and simply shows what a class act you run in Oakland!"
— Gregory Boals, Chorus Manager, San Francisco Symphony, May 2007.
"As a former chorister in Chicago and having formed and directed a choir in Chicago’s West Side, I was amazed! The basses were tremendous."
—John Baldwin, March 2007, on Rachmaninoff's Vespers
"You were just AWESOME! It took our Good Friday devotions to a sublime level of beauty and power. I was especially impressed by the soloists. Their level of musicianship and musicality is just phenomenal in artists so young."
—Jim Gilman, St. Augustine Church, March 2008.
"Everybody locked the choir into his heart according to me. And with a low beautiful Hungarian pronunciation the Hungarian songs were sung! Thank you!"
—Audience member from Liskolc, Hungary, October 2008.
"You singing of the Pergolesi Stabat Mater on Good Friday was simply stunning. If I may quote one of our regular parishioners, a woman who regularly attends symphony, opera, ballet and chamber music in the area, 'I’m an old lady and have been to a LOT of Stations of the Cross. This was by far the most moving I have ever attended'. Although the PBA is a secular organization, you have the capacity to bring a profound spirituality to your music that adds an inestimable dimension to your beautiful sunging and excellent musicianship. Those of us who hear you in a liturgical context certainly experience it, and are deeply grateful."
—Fr. Mark Wiesner, Pastor at St. Augustine, April 2008
"Your boys are IMPRESSIVE!”
– Jeffrey Smith, Organist and Choirmaster, Grace Cathedral, San Francisco