Noticeably effective is musical conductor John Barils ability to sync the music with the singers. There is not a moment of discord in the entire opera.
— Claudia Carbone BlastingNewsTV July, 2016
John Baril conducted a stylistically accurate, theatrically vivid account of this thrice-familiar score. The orchestra responded with real fire and commitment. The divisi ‘celli were especially vibrant and pulsing with emotion. The clarinet solo work was impeccably haunting. Whether playing soli or tutti, Maestro Baril inspired these fine players to thrilling results. He did on occasion allow soloists to indulge in some held high notes that were long enough to give Corelli pause, but that is a minor consideration. His reading had veristic sweep as well as minute detail.
— James Sohre Opera Today July, 2016
Baril, the CCO music director, typically conducts each season’s “standard” opera, and his artistry cannot be underestimated. His sensitive and intelligent musicianship, and that of his orchestra, are absolutely vital here. Puccini’s habit of doubling vocal lines where singers routinely stretch out the rhythm is just one challenging aspect of the score which Baril has totally mastered.
— Kelly Dean Hansen Boulder Daily Camera July, 2016
Conductor John Baril brings out the contrasting sounds of the Puccini score – although the orchestra did not have as many stands as Puccini would have demanded, they produce a great sound.
— Delaware Arts Info May, 2010
…rich orchestral playing led by John Baril made for a memorable production.
— Colorado Independent July, 1998
…the orchestra performs valiantly under the baton of John Baril.
— Pittsburgh Post-Gazette March, 1998
Opera Theater of Pittsburgh’s production of The Ballad of Baby Doe, directed by Michael Ehrman and conducted by John Baril is one of [Pittsburgh’s] ten best classical music performances of 1998.
— Pittsburgh Post-Gazette December, 1998
Conductor John Baril’s secure, energetic baton work had precision and rhythmic drive.
— Opera News August, 1997
The Toledo Symphony, lead by John Baril in his conducting debut with the Toledo Opera, played with mesmerizing sensitivity, creating a perfectly-balanced soundscape of aural beauty. Special mention should be made of harpist Nancy Lendrim’s solo work gracefully underpinning a number of arias.
— Wayne F. Anthony The Toledo Blade October, 2017
This chorus, which serves, as both the opera’s antagonist and its soul, is magnificent, and its preparation is the swan song for John Baril, Opera Colorado’s longtime chorus master. Baril, whose contribution has always been one of the steadiest, most reliable, and excellent aspects of company productions, has resigned the position to pursue other opportunities.
— Kelly Dean Hansen Boulder Daily Camera May, 2016