California Symphony Opens With a Flourish

San Francisco Classical Voice, 9/17/2019

"Cabrera’s intent was obvious from the beginning, as he took the motto-bound first movement quickly and did not linger on the fermatas. Throughout, the performance was clear and emphatic, with all the lines shining pellucidly through the texture."

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Las Vegas Philharmonic Orchestra: Brilliant Season at Smith Center For The Performing Arts

Broadway World, 9/11/2019

"As such, Donato Cabrera conducted with subtle humor and crisp agility, breathing new life into this popular piece."

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Katherine Balch doesn’t think a concerto is just for the soloist

San Francisco Chronicle, 5/6/2019

"It’s a short but breathtakingly beautiful stretch, which Cabrera and the orchestra rendered superbly."

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California Symphony Shows Ambition and Vivacity in Season Finale

San Francisco Classical Voice, 5/7/2018

"the orchestra under Music Director Donato Cabrera surged through the concert with astonishing assurance and intricacy"

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Keyboardist Fountain impresses before LSO wows audience with 'Pictures'

Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, 11/12/2017
"A mere two hours on the podium Friday ... proved how deeply [Cabrera] had bonded during rehearsals with Lubbock's musicians."

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Las Vegas Philharmonic shows music’s healing power at concert

Las Vegas Review-Journal, 10/12/2017
"Donato Cabrera, the Las Vegas Philharmonic’s music director, has firsthand knowledge of music’s healing power — and will help the orchestra demonstrate exactly that at Saturday’s Smith Center concert."

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Maria Valdes Takes California Symphony’s “Lyrical Dreams” Into the Sublime

San Francisco Classical Voice, 9/26/2017
"Cabrera conducted without a baton and with exuberance to lead this skillful performance"

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Folk music at the core of new cello concerto

San Francisco Chronicle, Joshua Kosman, 5/8/2017
"Cabrera and the orchestra showed once again the unanimity and dramatic cogency that they’re capable of in works of the standard repertoire.... Cabrera got big, buoyant playing from his forces in the opening movement, and the expansive slow movement — with its stately urgency and upholstered string playing — has rarely sounded so affecting."

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Jóhann Jóhannsson's Drone Mass Mesmerizes Duke Audience

Classical Voice North Carolina, Jeffrey Rossman, 3/25/2017
"The conductor Cabrera was as unobtrusive as musically feasible (something that generally conductors are not)."

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When to applaud at Philharmonic? Whenever you want, conductor says

Las Vegas Review Journal, Jane Anne Morrison, 3/22/2017
"I decided to check in with Donato Cabrera, the Phil’s popular and respected conductor and music director, who has worked all over the world."

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Guest conductor Cabrera leads rousing New West show

Ventura County Star, Rita Moran, 1/31/2017
"Cabrera, tall enough to conduct standing on the stage floor rather than a podium, led the orchestra through a vivid performance of Dvorak’s expansive symphony, one in which a panorama of emotions and musical challenges were eloquently expressed in a dramatic conclusion to the concert."

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Review: Donato Cabrera and California Symphony celebrate the swing that jazz gave to 20th-century music

San Jose Mercury News, 1/25/2016

"Gershwin's "Rhapsody," presented in the concert's second half, was the main event, and Cabrera led a dynamic reading, one that re-created the spirit ... employed in the work's premiere ..."

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Review: California Symphony sparkles under Donato Cabrera's guidance

San Jose Mercury News, Georgia Rowe, 5/5/2014
"Donato Cabrera has been leading the California Symphony for a relatively short time -- he was appointed the orchestra's music director last June, and began his tenure in that capacity last September -- but he's forged a remarkably cohesive ensemble since then. The results were on dynamic display throughout the orchestra's season-ending concert Sunday afternoon..."

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Three Guest Artists Team for Stellar Philharmonic Outing

Las Vegas Review Journal, Alan Adams, January 2014
"Cabrera cuts a commanding figure on the podium but his conducting style is not overbearing. It’s apparent the players like him. With him in the running for the top job here in Las Vegas, the eventual decision will not be an easy one to make."

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Donato Cabrera Launches California Symphony tenure

San Jose Mercury News, Georgia Rowe, September 2013
"It was an outstanding start for Cabrera, 40, who clearly has great things in store for the 27-year-old orchestra. Tall and energetic, he's a passionate, heart-on-the-sleeve conductor, with eclectic musical tastes and a wealth of experience. If Sunday's concert was any indication, his new relationship with the Walnut Creek orchestra is already reaping felicitous results."

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© 2017 Donato Cabrera