Advocate Editorial Board opinion: Honor well earned by Bach Festival director

By the Advocate Editorial Board
May 2, 2013 at 12:02 a.m.

Victoria's musical community is impressive, especially considering the size of our hometown when compared with larger communities. We have an active symphony orchestra and celebrate multiple music-oriented festivals throughout the year, from Downtown Rhythms and Jam Fest to the Victoria Bach Festival.

Now, one of our town's musical leaders has been honored by the state of Texas, and we are excited to see him receive such recognition after his years of service to our community.

Craig Hella Johnson, who has served as the Victoria Bach Festival's artistic director since 1992, was recognized as the 2013 Texas State Musician on Tuesday by the Texas Commission on the Arts.

Johnson was chosen after a process that began with a six-month nomination process with hundreds of nominations from community members and fellow artists, which was narrowed down to 10 candidates.

This recognition from the state and others in the musical community is an amazing honor, and we congratulate Johnson for his hard work and talent, which led to this award. Besides his work with the Bach Festival, Johnson was inducted into the Austin Arts Hall of Fame in 2008, he founded and is artistic director for the Grammy-nominated choir Conspirare, and in April, he was named the music director/conductor of the Vocal Arts Ensemble in Cincinnati.

We are honored to have such a talented musician and leader invested in the musical community of Victoria and the Crossroads. It is astonishing and humbling to know someone with so much talent and potential chose to take part in our festival when an entire world of opportunities and masterpieces are available to him.

For 38 years, the Bach Festival has drawn internationally recognized musicians to our hometown to celebrate and appreciate master works of classical music. This year, it will be lead by the Texas State Musician. Congratulations, Craig Hella Johnson, on your new title. We look forward to another year of enjoying your musical leadership and vision at the Victoria Bach Festival, and we hope to share the joy of music with you for many years to come.

This editorial reflects the views of the Victoria Advocate's editorial board.



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