This year’s San Francisco Classical Voice Audience Choice Awards gave us two first-place wins in the categories of Best Early Music/Baroque Ensemble & Best Festival.
These are no small distinctions as, this year, we chose to not solicit nominations as is a quite common practice among performing arts organizations here in the Bay Area. So we were surprised and delighted to learn that we had been nominated in the two most important categories for us. We then let our audience members know of the good news. But we never imagined that we would place so significantly.
It is an honor to win these top accolades considering the other fine Early Music/Baroque Ensembles in the Bay Area, and also considering some wonderful other festivals including Valley of the Moon and Festival Napa Valley.
So we are thrilled, and we sincerely hope that you are, too. We appreciate that every bit of admiration is due to the amazing, generous, and committed performances that our artists bring to ABS whenever they are with us. We are always grateful to them in countless ways, and we are always deeply grateful to you for your support.
Here are the two relevant excerpts from SFCV's announcement, with some kind words by senior editor and content manager, Michael Zwiebach:
"Keeping the faith brought rewards for American Bach Soloists, the winners in this category. The group’s annual Messiah performances in Grace Cathedral and its summer festival have won favor with fans, as well as critical praise. An indefatigable artistic director, Jeffrey Thomas, continues to freshen the group with new talent and a teaching academy. ABS’s friendly rivals on the Bay Area’s thriving early music scene, Voices of Music and Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, came second and third, polling a large number of votes."
"American Bach Soloists’ Summer Bach Festival ranked a runaway first with our readers in this crowded category. The festival showed an adventurous spirit with a “Bach and the Blues” night and a highly anticipated full performance of Handel’s oratorio Belshazzar."