Music Director John Baril has seen his share of milestones in the pit at Central City Opera, but this summer’s Il trovatore represents a new height for him and the company. Giuseppe Verdi’s popular but often critically maligned score was given its best possible advocacy by Baril and stage director Joachim Schamberger in the jewel box theater. The choruses of gypsies and soldiers are splendid, as is Baril’s orchestra. Verdi’s accompaniments range from the banal to the sublime, and these musicians had a keen understanding of when to come forward and when to let the singers take the lead. While Leonora is not the central character, the role is incredibly demanding, so much so that her last major solo in Act IV is often cut. Loutsion did sing one verse of it. This was just one example of Baril’s respect for Verdi’s score, which was evident throughout.
— Kelly Dean Hansen Boulder Daily Camera July, 2018
If all operatic performances of merit begin with the conductor&mdsah;even “Trovatore,” the ultimate singers’ opera—then John Baril was the right choice to lead this excellent production. …Baril provided the eloquence and shrewd pacing from which the entire production took its vivid, dark persona.
— Reno Evening Gazette October, 1998