Conductor
Acclaim
 
"A series of exceptionally strong performances under the American conductor Stephen Lord ensures that it sounds marvelous..."
Christopher Gray, Oxford Times (UK)
"Stephen Lord, an ENO debutant, brings atmospheric melodrama to Verdi's astonishing score."
Hugh Canning, The Times (UK)
Rigoletto is as enthralling as ever
"Come the second act ... the ever lively ENO chorus and conductor Stephen Lord's bold dynamics inject[ed] some drama into proceedings. The final act - set around that glowing, dingy Hopper-esque bar - was as enthralling as ever."
Kieron Quirke, Evening Standard (UK)
Rigoletto: English National Opera @ Coliseum
"In the pit Stephen Lord conducted a blood and guts reading of the score and although he took many passages at quite a lick, it was viscerally exciting ... and the orchestra played their hearts out. And at the end, joy of joys, there were even proper curtain calls, so bravos all round."
Keith McDonnell, Music OMH (UK)
Salome (6/3/09), Opera Theatre of Saint Louis
"The lineup for Strauss' one-act Salome guaranteed success, but the production's brutal force was an unexpected surprise. Lord brings a Romantic musical temperament to the pit, and he led the Saint Louis Symphony players in glorious, plush colors and opulent climaxes without covering the singers."
Judith Malafronte, Opera News
From left, Matthew Hanscom, Ava Pine, Daniel Billings, Carlos Monz&oacute;n, Hana Park and Diego Torre in the Wolf Trap Opera Company's spirited but absurd take on Puccini's opera, in which "La Boh&egrave;me" was translated into "Rent" and back to "Boh&egrave;me."<span class="credit"></span>
A 'Bohème' in the High-'Rent' District
"Still, the performance had joie de vivre in the cafe scene and a spirited pillow fight. And as always, Puccini's music -- lovingly played by the National Symphony Orchestra under Stephen Lord -- transcended the plot."
Mark J. Estren, Washington Post
A short but sweet season for Opera Theatre of St. Louis
" ... Music Director Stephen Lord demonstrated yet
again why he's become one of the most important conductors in opera."
Sarah Bryan Miller, St. Louis Post Dispatch
At St. Louis Opera, a queen loses her head and a princess orders one on a silver
"Lord kept the orchestra at a fine, furious boil throughout."
John von Rhein, Chicago Tribune
Strauss's "Salome"
"Conductor Stephen Lord shaped the score with precision and muscular elegance."
Heidi Waleson, Wall Street Journal
A Favorite, a Standard and a Rarity at Opera Theater of Saint Louis
"Stephen Lord's intelligent, beautifully calculated work in the pit matched the high level of musicality onstage."
Sarah Bryan Miller, Musical America
Shockingly beautiful: Kelly Kaduce as Salome, shown with the head of Jokanaan.
"Stephen Lord, OTSL's most refined conductor, has been entrusted with Salome. Strauss scored it for a monstrously excessive 118-piece orchestra. OTSL crams about half that many musicians into its tiny pit. Their sound is complex and deeply textured. With little rehearsal and nearly no elbow room, they illuminate this music." Read More...
Lew Prince, St. Louis Riverfront Times
L'Elisir d'Amore, Michigan Opera Theatre, 3/27/09
"MOT's orchestra was operating on fewer rehearsals than normal due to the company's loss of financial support from Detroit's troubled automakers. But under the sensitive conducting of Stephen Lord, the musicians still played Donizetti's miraculous score with precisioned verve."
John Guinn, Opera News
Kaduce triumphs as Opera Theatre's Salome
"Music director Stephen Lord triumphed in the pit ... the orchestra was splendid.

"'Salome' is a compelling night of music theater."

Sarah Bryan Miller, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"One is now so used to the perceptive presence of Stephen Lord as music director of most OC productions that one takes his excellence for granted -- which one should never do.

Here again he wielded a magic wand that accounted for the overall excellence of the Saturday performance.

This is opera of exceptional excellence." Read More...
Wes Blomster, Boulder Daily Camera
Refreshing 'Butterfly' takes off
"In the pit, Stephen Lord led a lush, wonderfully paced accompaniment from the Colorado Symphony."
Marc Shulgold, Rocky Mountain News
"Conductor Stephen Lord did his usual strong job in the pit, capably supporting the singers and bringing out the best in Puccini's beautiful score."
Kyle MacMillan, Denver Post
<font color="#000000">Jason Alexander</font>
"All were accompanied by an inspired National Symphony Orchestra, the City Choir of Washington and singers from the Wolf Trap Opera Studio, all under the baton of Stephen Lord, who did a bang-up job making sure the evening was loads of musical fun despite the weather." Read More...
T.L. Ponick, Washington Times
What should determine tempo in Puccini performances? Should the composer's markings be followed with fidelity or flexibility? Stephen Lord, one of America's most in-demand Puccini conductors, shares his thoughts. Read More...
Stephen Lord, Opera News
Boston Lyric Opera: 'L'Elisir d'Amore'
"Now in his final season as music director of the BLO, Stephen Lord took the podium for his last production. With him at the helm, one has come to count on stylistic breadth, energy, momentum and true dramatic support. The audience leapt to its feet as he joined the cast, expressing its gratitude for many evenings, moments and years of great theater and music."
Wayman Chin, Opera News
"It seemed just right that the audience saved its standing ovation for the BLO's longtime music director Stephen Lord. This is the last production he conducts before leaving his post at the end of the season. Once again Lord presided in the pit with a sure and graceful hand, leading with all the sensitivity and suppleness that this music requires. The orchestra, no doubt full of players he has hand-picked over the years, rose to the occasion." Read More...
Jeremy Eichler, Boston Globe
"Stephen Lord, the company music director, sustained tension with brisk tempos and crisp articulation worthy of Toscanini. And, unlike Toscanini, he opened up all the time-dishonored cuts." [LA TRAVIATA - Opera Theatre of St. Louis]
Financial Times/Opera Magazine
"Conductor Stephen Lord brilliantly evoked the lively stew of personalities, dreams, conflicts and everyday occurrences." [STREET SCENE - Opera Theatre of St. Louis]
Wall Street Journal
"The orchestra played expressively for music director Stephen Lord, who restored most of the traditional cuts. Lord knows how to help and challenge singers, and he caught the fever of the party scenes, and the pain and passion of the intimate ones. More than anyone else, he realized what still moves us in La Traviata." [LA TRAVIATA - Boston Lyric Opera]
Boston Globe
"Mr. Lord, the music director of the Boston Lyric Opera and the Opera Theater of St. Louis, conducted an undulant performance in a score rich with waltzes." [LA RONDINE - New York City Opera]
New York Times
"The orchestra played with commendable spirit and flexibility under Lord, who made certain that the singers and chorus sang understandable English words." [LA TRAVIATA - Opera Theatre of St. Louis]
Chicago Tribune
"Stephen Lord led the Colorado Symphony from the pit - and the orchestra's sound nicely blended with the vocal fireworks onstage." [Gala Opening with Renée Fleming - Opera Colorado]
Rocky Mountain News
"Stephen Lord's wholesale embrace of the score, with its romantic gestures and broad palette, resulted in a splendidly vivid musical reading...." [ROMÉO ET JULIETTE - Opera Theatre of St. Louis]
Opera News
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