BCCO’s commanding performances of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem at UC Berkeley’s Hertz Hall last June earned a top spot in the 2015-16 Best of the Bay reader poll by San Francisco Classical Voice (www.sfcv.org). Voted as Best Choral Performance, BCCO was heralded for its production of the choral masterwork which required two choruses, two orchestras and multiple soloists, all under the direction of Ming Luke, BCCO’s music director, and Eric Choate, assistant director. In announcing the award on its website, SFCV wrote, “The BCCO more than met the challenge as evidenced by their decisive first place in our poll and by comments collected from concertgoers such as, ‘It has been a while since I was so moved by a performance. It was one of the most satisfying musical events that I have ever attended.’” The War Requiem performances concluded the chorus’ 50th anniversary celebration, thrilling audiences who filled all of Hertz Hall’s 678 seats for each of the three concerts. Hertz Hall was voted “Best Small Venue” in the SFCV poll. “It is intimate enough for small chamber ensembles yet sufficiently expansive to accommodate a full orchestra with large chorus, as it did for this year’s best-choral performance winner, Britten’s War Requiem performed by the Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra,” wrote SFCV.
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