"La joven orquesta Madrid Barroco abre una puerta a una obra tan olvidada como bella con la primera grabación mundial de varios responsorios de Navidad y Epifania de estos dos compositores [Courcelle y Nebra]."
"La expresiva música... encuentra en Madrid Barroco y en Wilkins intérpretes comprometidos y muy dignos de interés, que se adentran sin complejos en esta selva virgen con criterio meditado. A la brillante ejecución orquestal se suman un balanceado coro de cámara y un plantel de solistas de alto rango."
Mariano Ramírez Gisbert, Primavera 2002, AmadeusRead more Recording Reviews
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"But the gloriously dramatic Mass in D by Francisco Courcelle turns out to be a genuine masterpiece, worthy of a place alongside the great masses of Bach, Haydn and Mozart."
Scott Cantrell, April 19, 2005, Dallas Morning News
"Glorious 18th-century Spanish sacred music rang through ... in a concert by the Orchestra of New Spain. Composed for the Spanish court, this was music of grandeur, drama, excitement and poignancy."
Scott Cantrell, Dallas Morning News February 12, 2007
"For the two Courcelle works and the well-known Coronation Mass of Mozart, Mr. Wilkins led sensitive performances that brought music vividly to life and never seemed scholarly exercises."
Olin Chism, March 21, 2000, Dallas Morning News
"... impressive for its imagination and, especially, its rhythmic vitality. ... The [Courcelle Mass] was notable for its distinctive swagger and, at key cries for mercy, seductive introspection. The work for Epiphany had similar muscular writing. ... The [tonadilla] bounded along with saucy humor and drive."
"The 20-member [orchestra] of period instruments added a nice, spicy authenticity. The chorus sang with obvious affection for the music."
Charles Ward, November 17, 2003, Houston Chronicle
"... the Courcelle mass setting on... Dirige me, Domine... a vivid and beautifully crafted mingling of baroque and classical styles... with chills-down-the-back harmonic suspensions. ...these were spirited and capable performances."
Scott Cantrell, May 22, 2004, Dallas Morning News
"It was clear from the music and the synopses that [the tonadillas] were intended as light entertainment, clever but not above a low-brow audience. ... The interaction between the soloists near the end [of The carpenter’s apprentice] was as playful as Rossini at his most droll."
Olin Chism, September 18, 2003, Dallas Morning News
"It tells you something about the low international profile of Spanish music that the pieces we most associate with the country... Bizet’s Carmen and Ravel’s Bolero... were composed by Frenchmen. Grover Wilkins and his Dallas-based Orchestra of New Spain are working to change that situation. ... [Friday, a Soler] Magnificat offered striking declamation and poignant harmonic surprises. The villancicos ... were far more populist, with toe-tapping tunes and some hip-shifting syncopations."
Scott Cantrell, January 7, 2001, Dallas Morning News
"The Orchestra of New Spain warmed up for a brief tour to Houston and New Orleans... on Thursday night. The program of little-known music from 18th-century Spain left a vivid impression. Either there were some exceptional composers at work in Madrid in 1750, or Grover Wilkins, who chose the program, has a keen ear for what works. It’s always possible that both are true, of course."
"The most impressive of the four composers... was Courcelle. ... The mass was at times moving, at times joyous, and consistently beautiful... reminiscent of Haydn. This was high-quality music that inspired the obvious question: Why isn’t it better known?"
"The music for Epiphany was robust and ornate, with some lovely moments of repose."
"A fine group of soloists gave life to the texts. ... A small chorus projected more forcefully than their numbers would suggest, and the orchestra of early music specialists gave firm support under Mr. Wilkins’ baton."
Olin Chism, November 14 , 2003, Dallas Morning News
"Grover Wilkins conducted two vocal soloists and the Orchestra of New Spain...bringing to life a luminous sampling of 18th-century Spanish court and theater music. ...Both singers captured the emotional radiance and buoyant energy streaming through the sacred fare, awash in muted mysticism."
Cecelia Porter, The Washington Post February 12, 2008
"While some of our most eminent musical presenters... seem ever warier of trotting out any but the most well-worn warhorses, the Orchestra of New Spain keeps surprising us. ... Stylishly played, with minimal vibrato, the 18th-century-style instruments were revelatory."
Scott Cantrell, Dallas Morning News January 21, 2008
"HALLELUJAH! A FRESH CHRISTMAS PROGRAM: ORCHESTRA OF NEW SPAIN BRINGS JAUNTY NUANCE TO HOLIDAY SELECTIONS: Mr. Wilkins led a spirited, supple performance, with well-focused and expressive singing from the 15-voice chorus."
Scott Cantrell, Dallas Morning News December 5, 2007
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