"Stravinsky leaves little to slumber by, and ASO and Izcaray exaggerated and enhanced the work’s greatness, the conductor on one occasion bending backwards on his heels."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHAM, June 2018
“ASO Music Director Carlos Izcaray revealed his deep understanding of this musical icon [Bernstein], who broke ground as a conductor, pianist and composer, and opened minds and hearts as an educator, writer and civil rights activist.
Driven throughout by Izcaray’s animated physical gestures and acute sense of timing and balance, this was irresistible listening.”
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, May 2018
"Izcaray held the orchestra and choir of 85 together with focused beauty and balance"
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, April 2018
"Izcaray introduced a third talent to local audiences with the premiere of his newest composition... Yellowhammer allows plenty of breathing room. A gifted colorist, Izcaray was driven by his intimacy with the orchestra at hand, which has developed an acute facility for reading new scores."
- Michael Huebner, Classical Voice North America, February 2018
"Izcaray brought this reading down to earth with his incisive technique and attention to detail. Those properties are becoming increasingly apparent as Izcaray progresses through his third full season as music director.
But this reading had more than just an abundance of right notes. The opening movement had added urgency, permitted largely because of the mid-size string section, the conductor’s attention to sound and silence, and the acoustical space in Jemison Concert Hall."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, February 2018
"Kasman showed off his formidable technique and confident musical posture by establishing firm directions and laying important signposts, as is a soloist’s privilege. Izcaray and the orchestra followed with rigorous attention, conveying the soloist’s intentions while reveling in the composer’s orchestral colors."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, January 2018
"AYS music director Carlos Izcaray conducted the ensemble of 80-plus young, pre-professional musicians and earned a roaring standing ovation at its conclusion”
- Marilee Bradford, FilmMusicSociety.org, November 2017
"Izcaray brought to bear all the majesty, excitement and drama of the finale, one of the romantic era’s greatest movements. This was some of ASO’s most inspired playing under Izcaray"
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, October 2017
"Much of the credit for these two hours of engaging listening goes to Carlos Izcaray, whose solidarity with the orchestra is growing incrementally as he nears the end of his second full season as music director ... Izcaray’s attention to balance and blend, as well as the orchestra’s broad, expansive sound, drove this reading. Both forceful and lithe, the brasses held back when needed and dominated when called upon."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, March 2017
"Izcaray and the orchestra responded like partners [to violinist Francisco Fullana], not accompanists, to its shimmering sustained tones and subtly enhanced orchestration."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, February 2017
"Carlos Izcaray conducted the ensemble, which performed brilliantly, and with all the sensitivity and skill this music deserves."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, February 2017
"Izcaray’s shaping of the first movement’s arc was expert, as was the structuring of the entire concert, with its overlapping influences, concentrated and nuanced ethos, and compelling reflection on its subject."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, January 2017
"Izcaray forged a bracing, passionate reading with bold gestures and gripping crescendos. It was audible confirmation of the mark Izcaray has already made, and a compelling argument for ASO permanently stepping up the numbers in the string section."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, October 2016
"What cemented this performance as one of ASO’s best in the freshly-spawned Izcaray era were the conductor’s animated and communicative gestures, and genuine excitement."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, September 2016
"... it ended with a dramatic crescendo, galloping through the finish with a certain tone of triumph that Izcaray really knows how to get out of his musicians. These dramatic tempo and tonal swings and big flourishes at the ends of pieces are things that the ASO under Izcaray does noticeably well ... The performance was pitch-perfect, and the audience gave a roaring standing ovation."
- Edward Ashton, Weld Birmingham, April 2016
"Izcaray, who conducted both the Brahms and the Debussy without a score, was a capable collaborator and interpreter, employing an impressive range of gesticulations to convey his intentions ... Precision and poise led by Izcaray doing a little dance on the podium left the audience satisfied in its aftermath."
- Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk, February 2016
"Other fresh-faced maestros can be found at the Orchestra of St. Luke’s ... the Louisville Orchestra ... and the Alabama Symphony (where Venezuelan Carlos Izcaray, 38, has brought eclectic programming to the deep South)."
- Brian Wise, Slate Magazine, February 2016
"Izcaray and ASO assembled a performance that was subtly expressive and impeccably balanced ... Izcaray seized the opportunity to mold ASO into an intricate, though highly expressive entity, taking full advantage of its excellent woodwind soloists, horns and crisp strings. This was Izcaray’s finest single performance yet with ASO, largely due to the conductor’s vivid gestures, measured pace, well-proportioned silences and crisp communication across the entire stage.”
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, January 2016
"Izcaray is inspiring to watch as his energy and spirit infect orchestra and audience alike.”
- Michael Huebner, Classical Voice America, September 2015
"[Strauss’ “Der Rosenkavalier” Suite] requires great sonic flexibility, and Izcaray, who conducted without a score, was able to successfully mold it into an evocative array of orchestral moods and colors."
- Michael Huebener, Arts BHam, September 2015
"The two soloists (to whom the concerto is dedicated) were both excellent and the conductor, Carlos Izcaray, a 37-year-old Venezuelan, guided the orchestra skilfully through this complex work."
- Michael Green, IOL News, June 2015
"The performance of this great symphony was a triumph for conductor and orchestra."
- Michael Green, IOL News, June 2015
"Izcaray’s conducting is as grounded, subtle and detailed as you will find."
- Michael Huebner, Arts BHam, February 2015
“Conductor Carlos Izcaray led the Utah Symphony in a performance of lovely color and subtlety.”
- Catherine Reese Newton, The Salt Lake Tribune, January 2015
"Conducting without a score, Izcaray let loose in Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique. This no-holds-barred reading brought out the best of ASO in romantic-era mode."
- Michael Huebner, Birmingham-al.com. September 2014
“Venezuelan conductor Carlos Izcaray, who made his local debut with Opera Theatre of St. Louis in 2012 and his SLSO debut with these concerts, demonstrated a clear command of the orchestra and of the score... a dashing figure on the podium.”
- St. Louis Post-Dispatch, May 2014
“Carlos Izcaray revealed the subtle beauty of this score throughout ... Izcaray superbly brought out the score’s elements of fire and ice.”
- Opera News, February 2014
“Carlos Izcaray steered the highly-skilled instrumentalists with a perfect blend of care and effervescence, gently shaping the musical structures whilst adding entrancing hints of local colour and interest.”
- Classical Source, January 2014
"Outstanding double bill of one-acters ‘Thérèse’ and ‘La Navarraise’ from Jules Massenet, interpreted with nuanced sensitivity and well measured freedom by Carlos Izcaray at the podium."
- Opernwelt, December 2013
“Carlos Izcaray lead things powerfully from the pit: the score glistened.”
- Roderic Dunnett, The Arts Desk, November 2013
"In the pit, Carlos Izcaray conducted with control, verve and attention to detail; the lyrical stream of melody was complemented by timbral bite and dynamic punch.”
- Claire Seymour, Opera Today, October 2013
“Conductor Carlos Izcaray draws drama and finesse from his attentive festival band and chorus.”
- Pat O’Kelly, Irish Independent, October 2013
“The most animate contribution comes from the orchestra under Carlos Izcaray, underlining Massenet’s gift for mood and colour.”
- Andrew Clark, Financial Times, October 2013
“Spanish-Venezuelan conductor Carlos Izcaray successfully stirs up the storms that Massenet ordered.”
- Michael Dervan, the Irish Times, October 2013
“Thanks to newcomer Carlos Izcaray at the podium, the St. Louis Symphony members never sounded better.”
- Stage Door St Louis, 2012
"Conductor Carlos Izcaray’s inspired guidance of the orchestra offers a spirited interpretation of Bizet’s rich, lush, diverse and evocative score."
- Ladue News, St. Louis, 2012
"The LSSO had the right conductor to propel it like a stampede across the pampas — the whippy young Venezuelan Carlos Izcaray.”
- The Times, London, 2012
"Carlos Izcaray led the show with a great sense of buoyancy and wit.”
- Opera News, New York, 2012
“Carlos Izcaray set the bar very high indeed with a glowing, breathless prelude that was not only characterized by virtuosic playing from the winds, but also rich playing from the banks of strings.”
- Opera Today, 2011
“[Carlos Izcaray] led the performance with an unstinting command of pace, superbly capturing the score’s dramatic fire while allowing the singers’ voices to ride over the orchestra."
- Opera News, New York, 2011
“Marvelously conducted by the young Venezuelan Carlos Izcaray, the opera makes a thrilling opening night.”
- The Stage, 2010
“Carlos Izcaray’s conducting was well attuned to the drama, and he was very singer-friendly as one must be in opera.”
- Classical Source, 2010