Quotes & Reviews
Holiday Pops Music
Robert Lindsey Nassif, Broadway composer:
“Peter Bloesch's holiday pops music is breathtakingly beautiful. These masterful creations are lush, inventive, joyous, and moving, and are my favorite of all carol arrangements. The magic and spirit of the season resounds from every skillfully crafted measure.”
— Robert Lindsey-Nassif
Award-winning Broadway composer
Timothy Hankewich, conductor:
“Finding fresh new holiday arrangements of quality is always a challenge and a chore. But Peter's orchestration and arranging is consistently masterful and creative. He brings a fresh perspective to holiday music and takes full advantage of the capabilities of a professional ensemble. His music far exceeds the usual holiday fare.”
Comments about specific pieces:
“'O Come, All Ye Faithful' is a stirring arrangement of the holiday classic that is guaranteed to thrill and engage both audience and performers alike. Perfect for a concert closer!”
“Peter's version of 'On This Day Earth Shall Ring' is filled with lush harmonies and masterful orchestration that perfectly captures the joy of the carol. This piece is sure to add a terrific festive flavor to everyone's holiday programming!”
“'I Saw Three Ships Come Fiddling In' is a rollicking rendition that is sheer fun from start to finish!”
— Timothy Hankewich
Conductor and Music Director of Orchestra Iowa and its affiliated choirs
Dr. Buddy Baker,
former Director of Music at Walt Disney:
“I am very impressed with the pops music that Peter has written. His experience in the world of film music has definitely given his pops music a real sense of drama and emotion.”
— Dr. Buddy Baker
former Director of Music at Walt Disney
Dr. Christian Tiemeyer, conductor:
“Peter Bloesch is a wonderful composer, arranger, and orchestrator. His music exhibits prodigious gifts of creativity, drama, and a flair for orchestration. His music has thrilled our audiences with its freshness and emotional power.
In addition, our orchestra and chorus members have expressed unusual delight in performing his music, which speaks well for his part writing.
I recommend the music of Peter Bloesch wholeheartedly. Your orchestra and your audience will be delighted if you perform it!”
— Dr. Christian Tiemeyer
former Music Director, Orchestra Iowa
Joe Harnell, Hollywood composer and arranger:
“Peter, I'm eager to endorse how much I admire your pops music — it's an absolute delight! I just love the imagination that you've put into these sparkling, charming pieces.
Your 'Fantasia on Two Christmas Carols' is brilliant — fast and fun throughout. And I was deeply moved by your sensitive arrangement of 'O Holy Night' — it's got to be one of the best arrangements of this carol out there. And how could I be anything but totally blown away by the grandeur and power of your 'Garland of Carols'?
I hope that orchestras and choruses around the country will take note of your arrangements, because they're terrific!”
— Joe Harnell
Film Composer, and Grammy Award-winning arranger for many celebrated singers,
including Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, and Beverly Sills
Dr. Randal A. McChesney, choral conductor:
“Peter Bloesch displays vitality and creativity in his holiday pops arrangements, which delight both musician and audience significantly. Specifically, Peter finds creative and fresh ways to match the music to the text, which is unfortunately quite a rare thing to be found within the more 'established' holiday pops repertoire.
His penchant for the unexpected in works such as the choral/orchestral 'O Holy Night' and 'A Garland of Carols' startles audiences into rapt attention with their texture and beauty. Performances of these works with the Cedar Rapids Concert Chorale and Cedar Rapids Symphony Orchestra earned warm and enthusiastic audience reception.
Having conducted a number of Peter's choral works, I can attest to the fact that his choral writing is consistently outstanding and a delight to sing. Accessible and artistic, the music of Peter Bloesch deserves attention and frequent performance.”
— Dr. Randal A. McChesney
Past President, Choristers Guild Board of Directors;
former Executive Director, Richards Institute of Education and Research
Richard P. Hoffman, choral conductor:
“It was my happy privilege to work with Peter Bloesch on the première of his delightful work, 'Fantasia on Two Christmas Carols.' How refreshing and brilliant this piece turned out to be!
Not content merely to write splendid choral music, Bloesch showed a mastery at orchestration as well, and the combined effect was dazzling. My choir was particularly impressed with Bloesch's choral writing and his thoughtful use of the voice.
This work, and the holiday pieces which have followed in subsequent years, are destined to be found in the repertoire of fine orchestras and choruses everywhere.”
— Richard P. Hoffman
former Professor of Music Education and Choral Music, Coe College
David Michael Wolff, conductor:
“In 'A Festive Holiday,' Peter Bloesch's orchestrations are full of color, sparkle, and sweep — fun for the orchestra and a delight for the audience. The score and parts are highly detailed and polished, allowing an easy and clean first read-through with the orchestra.”
— David Michael Wolff
Principal Conductor of the Carolina Philharmonic
Scott Terrell, conductor:
“Peter's 'I Saw Three Ships Come Fiddling In' is a great Christmas carol that has been transformed into a great Irish jig — a rip-roaring time, and a true showpiece for any holiday concert!”
— Scott Terrell
former Music Director and Conductor of the Lexington Philharmonic
Gregory Vajda, conductor and composer:
“Peter Bloesch’s arrangement of 'Ding Dong! Merrily on High' is fun and imaginative. The Oregon Symphony musicians and I had great fun performing it!”
— Gregory Vajda
Principal Conductor of the Hungarian Radio Symphony,
and Former Resident Conductor of the Oregon Symphony
The Cedar Rapids Gazette:
“The Holiday Pops concert was lovely, as always. And therein lies the problem.
This sure-fire audience favorite draws huge crowds to the Paramount Theatre year after year to hear the Cedar Rapids Symphony play the songs of the season... But it's always the same songs, the same arrangements, the same sing-along, the same recipe for success... Now, give us something we don't expect!
Peter Bloesch did just that, and it was the highlight of the evening! In 'A Garland of Carols,' this young Iowa City composer took five familiar carols, strung them together, then twisted them brilliantly into a gleaming new work...
The Cedar Rapids Concert Chorale handled the task with grace... Bloesch's orchestral parts were equally thrilling, with unusual harmonies rocking 'Away In A Manger,' before gently laying that segment to rest, then blasting through 'O Come, All Ye Faithful' with chimes and brass blaring.”
— The Cedar Rapids Gazette,
Excerpt from a review by Diana Nollen,
copyright by the Cedar Rapids Gazette, reprinted with permission