Critical Acclaim

Seattle Symphony Orchestra

"Spanish-born Maestro López Cobos led the Seattle Symphony Orchestra in the best concert of the Season . . . The concert included some of the most moving and beautiful tunes of Russian romanticism. The experienced Spanish conductor Jesús López Cobos seemed to be very confident commanding the SSO in this repertoire. Inspired by the music that he encountered during his visit to Spain in 1848, Glinka depicted a colorful melody, full of gracious phases which evocate the richness of Spanish musical tradition. The rendition of the SSO was refined and passionate at a time. We enjoyed especially some joyful phases of the flutes and the horns. The evening continued with the symphonic suite Scheherezade, composed by Rimsky-Korsakov in 1888. It is a sample of the finest Russian orchestration and a great opportunity to prove the features of the orchestra. In a flawless rendition, the SSO musicians offered the best performance of the present season. Led by Maestro López Cobos, the orchestra made us dive in an ocean of overwhelming beauty . . . Lopez Cobos got the best of everyone. The orchestral planes combined nicely, in a rendition where everything worked out. Even with a guest conductor, the SSO maintained their level of excellence."

– Opera World, Carlos J. López

Gran Teatre del Liceu: „Rigoletto“

This enthralling production of Verdi’s perversely compelling opera steams along like a runaway train - except the headlong ride is under the firm control of the marvelous Jesús López-Cobos.

– ConcertoNet.com, Michael Johnson

Wiener Staatsoper: „La Cerenentola“

Ein Meister der leisen Töne
...Maestro Jesus López Cobos bedient den Lautstärkeregler so behutsam wie er die Tempodramaturgie Rossinis auffächert. Aus einer oberflächlichen harmonischen Kulisse für Vokale Hochseilakte wird unter seine Händen dank des sensibel und mit spürbarem Animo mitgestaltenden Saatsopernorchesters eine bemerkenswert reich aufgefächerte Klangerzählung.

– Die Presse, Wilhelm Sinkovicz

Wiener Staatsoper: „Nabucco“


Dirigent Jesus López Cobos und das Staatsopernorchester bemühten sich, Verdis melodische Linien plastisch zu gestalten. Sie setzen auf feinnervig ausgeloteten Sound,zeigen Mut zur Attacke und lassen in der Detailzeichnung vielemreizvolle Momente aufblühen.

– Kronen Zeitung,

Opéra Royal de Liège Wallonie: „La Vera Costanza“


"La richesse mélodique et instrumentale du compositeur est habilement mise en valeur par la direction discursive de Jésus Lopez Coso qui sait imposer à la représentation un rythme frémissant West Deutsche Allgemeine 12 February 2012: Gastdirigent Jesus López Cobos bewies,dass er sich nicht nur auf die Werke seiner iberischen Landsleute versteht,sondern auch auf die schwierige Doppelbödigkeit eine Dimitri Schostakowitsch."

– Le Soir,

Wiener Staatsoper: „Manon“


Jesús López-Cobos, 71, früher Berliner GMD und Musikdirektor des Teatro Real Madrid, gastierte seit seinem Debüt an der Staatsoper (1980) eher selten hier: Nun erweist er sich mit „Manon“ als feinsinniger Massenet- Interpret mit Gespür für französische Klangkultur. Souverän führt er das Orchester, die Szenen wirken frisch und atmen Sinnlichkeit.

– Kronen Zeitung, Karlheinz Roschitz

Omaggio del Presidente al Papa con il concerto nella Sala Nevi


Il direttore Jesus López Cobos – venti anni trascorsi all’Opera di Berlino – della sacrale composizione di Vivaldi arricchita dal Coro guidato dal Maestro Gabbiani, e del drammatico « Stabat Mater » rossiniano, ricco di stati emotivi culminanti del fugato dell’ « Amen » finale, ha dato una lettura parca di effetti e pervasa da pacata serenità.

– Il Tempo Roma, Pao. Par.

López Cobos saca lo mejor de 164 músicos y pone en pie el Auditorio von Mahler III


El maestro zamorano demostró ser lo que en la jerga laboral se conoce como un jefe capacitador. Entregó con una sugerente batuta cada compás a los músicos para que ellos dieran lo mejor de sí.

– El Norte de Castilla, Victoria M. Niño

Theater an der Wien: „Il Postino“


Drawing fine playing from the Vienna Symphony, the conductor, Jesús López-Cobos ensures that Mr. Catán melodies sing and that his transparent orchestral textures are neatly balanced.

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– New York Times, George Loomis

Teatro Real: „Simon Boccanegra“


[...] Jesús López Cobos offered an excellent reading, even better than at the premiere and this was one of his best performances ever at the Teatro Real. Domingo’s performances as Boccanegra were announced with the presence of Romanian diva Angela Gheorghiu singing Amelia Grimaldi, but Ms. Gheorghiu sang only the first of them, being replaced in the other two by the excellent Inva Mula. She was even better than at the premiere, apart from some small shortcomings at the lower end of her range and nobody missed Ms. Gheorghiu. [...]

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– Music Web International, José M Irurzun

Teatro Real: „Salomé“


[...] El experimentado director español Jesús López Cobos, en una de sus ultimas apariciones como director musical de la Orquesta Sinfónica de Madrid, logró extraer de la agrupación, la profusa y abundante musicalidad contenida en la música de Strauss, sin perder de vista los momentos de tensión —y por momentos atonalidad— que envuelven incesantemente a la partitura, a la vez que mostró amplia consideración por las voces.

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– Tiempo de Música, Ramón Jacques

Chicago Lyric Opera: „Lucia di Lammermoor“


When Jesus Lopez-Cobos conducted Donizetti’s opera "Lucia di Lammermoor" at Chicago Lyric Opera in January and February, it was like "seeing an old friend after so many years," he said. It hasn’t been that long – Lopez-Cobos stepped down as music director of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in May, 2001 – but his return to the Music Hall podium this weekend is kind of like that. [...]

The opera was a triumph, earning rave reviews from the critics, who called it "dazzling" (Chicago Sun-Times) and "fortunate in having Jesus Lopez-Cobos" (Chicago Tribune).

"Lucia" was performed in Lopez-Cobos’ own critical edition, prepared for Italian publisher Ricordi and premiered by Lopez-Cobos with soprano Montserrat Caballe and tenor Jose Carreras at London’s Covent Garden in 1976. [...] Lopez-Cobos looked relaxed, even exhilarated, as he discussed "Lucia" and life after the CSO in his dressing room before the Feb. 4 matinee. "I am feeling fantastic now, much better than 10 years ago," he said. [...]

Lopez-Cobos is a builder by nature. The CSO "became recognized as a truly major American orchestra" under Lopez-Cobos, said his successor Paavo Järvi. He is building his orchestra at the Teatro Real, having added 15 new positions and begun a Sunday morning chamber music series. Lopez-Cobos, who founded the CSO Chamber Players, hopes it will enrich his Madrid players as it has done at the CSO. [...]

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– Music in Cincinnati, Mary Ellyn Hutton

Music of Turina and Debussy


Joaquin Turina, a native of Seville, Spain, is the featured composer on this fine Telarc SACD hybrid disc, which is playable on any CD player. As great as Debussy is, with these compositions and Lopez-Cobos' excellent readings of the scores, you'll understand his top billing (quantity-wise) and at least on par quality-wise. Maestro Lopez-Cobos first directed the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in recordings for Telarc starting in 1987 with music of another Spanish composer, Falla. This long lasting collaboration has now culminated after twenty-six recordings with these fine performances. [...]

Addendum of miscellaneous recorded choices includes the following: A few fine piano recordings of most of the above compositions do exist. Lopez-Cobos recorded the Danzas some time back for Decca with the Suisse Romande Orchestra and it has been available on CD for those who care to compare. Long-time audiophiles may enjoy hearing how this outstanding new recording fares against sentimental favorites from the " golden age of LP recording" and later available on CD. Iberia enjoyed surprisingly good performances from Reiner on RCA and Paray on Mercury, both fine sounding as typical for each company's best from that well-known early stereo recording time period. This last CD/SACD hybrid for the triad of Telarc, Lopez-Cobos and Cincinnati Orchestra however, is now my first choice for listening pleasure. The result is a top recommendation to music lovers and audiophiles... enough said.

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– Enjoy the Music, Karl Lozier