Reviews & Commentary

Sunlight on Quaking Aspen

Greg Bartholomew's Sunlight on Quaking Aspen is beautifully atmospheric: Couldn't we tarry just a touch longer?

-- Colin Clarke, Fanfare Magazine, Issue 41:2, Nov/Dec 2017

And the Wind

The [Choral Arts Ensemble]'s lower voices shone in the Oregon premiere of Cascadia Composer Greg Bartholomew's lush, calm And the Wind.

-- Brett Campbell, "Portland contemporary choral ecosystem,"
Oregon Arts Watch
, June 26, 2016

The Far North Land: Passages for Wind Ensemble

Greg Bartholomew's The Far North Land also received its premiere on Sunday, based on a tune his father sang to him during his childhood. The piece aptly captures the nostalgic feeling of a certain place and time, with exposed parts for many instruments that created a sense of drama and narrative.

-- Kristin Shafel Omiccioli, Festive and fun "Frozen Fantasia,"
, December 17, 2014

Beneath the Apple Tree

[This] melodious idyll ... has distinct echoes of Aaron Copland.

-- Howard Smith, Music & Vision, August 19, 2014

Summer Suite

[A] most attractive work. Especially enjoyable are the warm and rich sounds by both trumpet and quartet.

-- Barry Kilpatrick, American Record Guide, March/April 2013

This is largely lyric music, both lovely and poetic, ... The open and soaring melodies remind this reviewer of Copland and Hovhaness.

-- John Falskow, ITG Journal, March 2013

A modal work, suggestive of English folk melodies with pandiatonic contrapuntal texture, reminiscent of the music of Frank Bridge and early Britten.

-- Art Gottschalk, Chair of Composition and Theory, Shepherd School of Music

The Tree

Greg Bartholomew weaves meaning into the poetry with every word he sets.

--Jack Senzig: Greg Bartholomew ChoralNet CCMC Composer of the Month, April 2012

The Esoterics couldn't have opened with a better number than Seattle composer Greg Bartholomew's The Tree, on a poem by the minor American transcendentalist Jones Very. It fell well within the bounds of today's standard choral language, but it shone by virtue of its well-sculpted phrases and deft and fluid counterpoint, as if to say "this is how it's done."

--Jeff Winslow, Oregon Arts Watch, May 18, 2014.

String Trio for George Crumb

You will enjoy this work immensely and want to hear more by this "youthful" (50 years old!) composer.

--Paul Shoemaker reviewing the Langroise Trio CD Volante,
Music Web International, February 2009.

... the work drew considerable interest and was enthusiastically received.

--Paul Shoemaker reviewing the Langroise Trio concert performance,
Music Web International, January-June 2007.

To a Locomotive in Winter

Greg Bartholomew, a fine composer not afraid of accessibility, set Walt Whitman's To a Locomotive in Winter in a sturdy, lyrical style. Tuneful and diatonic, the music seemed appropriately Whitman-esque.

--National Public Radio classical music reviewer Tom Manoff writing in The Eugene Register-Guard,
Oregon Bach Festival Spotlight Shines on Younger Composers, July 11, 2002.

The First Suite from Razumov

Bartholomew understands the natures of the instruments used (a string ensemble with clarinet) and manages to capture the complexity of the setting in a way that is fresh, portraying a sense of sorrow and, at the end of each movement, a soaring sense of hope that is somehow fitting and certainly fulfilling. These are lovely pieces both in composition and in recording.

--James R. Maclean reviewing the Masterworks of the New Era (Vol. 6) on

The Second Suite from Razumov

Bartholomew's writing has a feeling of film style to it, sprinkled with eclectic hints that never quite materialize into firm influences. Was that a Spanish flair, a ballad, folksong or a dance rhythm? Was that harmonic minor meant to be Arabian? His music has a lilting grace that makes listeners want to join in, dancing or playing along.

--Ruth Bingham reviewing a Spring Wind Quintet concert,
Honolulu Advertiser, March 15, 2010.

Voyageur Suite

This is a tonal work with nice writing for brass, fun to play, and a work that general audiences would enjoy. excellent work with parts of equal interest to all performers.

--Journal of the International Brass Chamber Music Festival

On the Ground Where We Live

It's a great piece. ... Solid piece, substantial, accesssible yet not predictable, very meaningful experience.

--Seth Williamson, Music Director/Producr, WVTF Radio, Roanoke, VA

On the Ground Where We Live is the work of a masterful composer who is a true professional. This is composition at its very finest. Melodic and passionate, the work captures and entrances the mind and heart of the listener. A modern classic.

--Malcolm Brown, Isle of Wight, UK

On the Ground Where We Live is a very solid piece that recalls an earlier style of composition in our country that required of the composer a solid discipline and a melodic gift. This is the music of a professional.

--Dr. Scott Giles, Sacramento, California

On the Ground Where We Live is a victory of musical sensibility over financial and traditionalist barriers. I am a true fan of your works. Bravo!!!

--Chris Cuda, Cleveland, Ohio

Your new orchestral work is a warm, expressive triumph! I can certainly tell that you are an American composer. It's strange how different nationalities effect the sound of compositions; American orchestral music, well, a lot of it as from Diamond, Schuman, Harris, Copland et al; has an open harmonic language redolent of wild spaces and a sometimes modal or clear harmonic language full of fifths and fourths. Your music shares some of these qualities (I feel), even though it is your own voice, and as such, identifiable by me as American. That's a compliment; the composers I listed above are held in the highest regard! Your piece is very communicative, romantic in some ways too, I think, and will touch many with its humanity.

--Marc Yeats, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Your new composition On the Ground Where We Live is a real classic with wonderful melodies and masterly composition.

--Jose Varela, Madrid, Spain

I agree with the other comments about this work. It is masterfully done. The orchestration is GRANDIOSO, and the thematic material is well developed and awesome. Mr. Bartholomew....respect, You are on my dream wish list for working together one day!

--Derrick Macbrian, Amirat, France

On the Ground Where We Live is gorgeous!!

--Carol Alban, Oakland, California