The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Kaplan Penthouse
Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center: Harbison, Lachenmann, Rihm
The New Yorker, March 24, 2016

"...In an evening of contemporary music—some modernist, some complexly neo-Romantic—by several of today’s most respected composers, the Society offers the U.S. première of the Sextet for Clarinet, Horn, and Strings by Wolfgang Rihm, performed by the superb clarinettist Romie de Guise-Langlois, the hornist Jennifer Montone, and the Daedalus Quartet..."


The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall
Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center Spotlights Albéric Magnard

The New York Times by Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim, October 28, 2015
"...The work received a burnished performance by the pianist Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, the flutist Tara Helen O’Connor, the oboist Stephen Taylor, the clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois, and the bassoonist Peter Kolkay..."  "...the musicians were attentive to the work’s frequent changes of stylistic terrain..." "...Ligeti’s 1953 Bagatelles for flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon and horn..." "...the music’s dance-hall energy dazzles, as in the opening Allegro, which the musicians played with rhythmic pep..." "...In the Adagio, a movement dedicated to Bartok’s memory, quiet, floating dissonances sustained by the flute and clarinet created a subtle trembling effect that was unexpectedly poignant..."


The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall
Prevailing Winds @ Chamber Music Society
Oberon's Grove by Philip Gardner, Sunday October 25th, 2015
"...Kudos, yet again, to the folks at Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center for putting together this imaginative program for which some of the outstanding wind players of the day gathered together to form a first-rate ensemble..." "...In these six Ligeti gems, we have met our five wind soloists and they have displayed their outstanding gifts of technique and artistry; they were called back for a bow..." "...In the ensuing slow movement, marked Tendre, Romie de Guise-Langlois stole my heart yet again with her deeply expressive playing of a poignant melody entwined in M. Bavouzet's poetic piano sounds. This theme becomes passionate and then pensive; I found myself with tears running down my face from the sheer beauty of Romie's playing. M. Bavouzet draws us on, though, with a solo passage which continues to ripple under a serene chorale from the winds..." "...The final Rondo: allegretto starts with a joy-filled skipping rhythm..."  "... Romie de Guise-Langlois brought forth a redolent, deeply 'Russian' theme which was passed to the horn. A sparkling flute cadenza and another clarinet passage carry the players to a final sprint..." "...Poulenc's Sextet for Piano and Winds..." "...The players had a grand time of it, and the final Prestissimo felt like a transfusion, an antidote to the world-weariness that's been creeping up on me of late. Great music, played as it was tonight, does one a world of good..."


Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Carnegie Hall
Nuance and Unanimity, No Conductor Required
The New York Times by James R. Oestreich, October 26, 2014
“…Core musicians stood out among the evening’s soloists: Stewart Rose, on French horn, in the Rossini; Romie de Guise-Langlois, a wonderful young clarinetist, in the Beethoven; Alan Kay, a veteran clarinetist, and Roni Gal-Ed, an oboist, in the Poulenc…”
 


Astral Artists, Church of the Holy Trinity
Astral Artists: Old World/New World, From klezmer to the cosmic
Broad Street Review by Tom Purdom, September 30, 2014
“…Astral Artists is a nonprofit organization that provides performance opportunities and other forms of career-boosting aid for the promising young musicians who survive its audition system. The musicians on parade at this event all proved they deserve the honor, but the star of the evening was the clarinetist, Romie de Guise-Langlois. The grand finale was a tour de force for clarinet: Osvaldo Golijov’s long, three-movement workout for clarinet and string quartet, The Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind…” “…His demands on the clarinetist include mood changes that leap, instantaneously, from sensuous middle-range melodies to piercing high-pitched assertions…” “…This is the second time I’ve heard an Astral concert in which de Guise-Langlois played a major part. Her Philadelphia recital debut in 2013 was a well-planned event that explored the history and range of the clarinet literature and left me with some exceptionally pleasing memories. Her performances in this concert indicate she possesses a technical proficiency and artistic acumen that could add another star to the roster of distinguished young musicians who have benefited from Astral’s efforts…”


Astral Artists, Church of the Holy Trinity
Astral Artists opens with confident, emotional, imaginative program
The Inquirer by David Patrick Stearns, September 30, 2014

“…Astral Artists opened its season…” “…with a group...” “…that delivered a weighty program with technical confidence plus a degree of imagination and emotional presence infrequently heard in any season…” “…Clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois encompassed alluring, soft-focused sounds for searching passages but also went to convincing extremes of otherworldly delirium…”


A Far Cry, Jordan Hall
Criers Contrast Gesualdo with Norman Bates
The Boston Musical Intelligencer by Elisa Birdseye, May 24, 2014

“…After a five-minute pause, the Criers played one of the loveliest performances of Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring that I have ever heard. They were joined by Susan Palma-Nidel on flute, Romie de Guise-Langlois, who has one of the lushest clarinet sounds I’ve heard lately…”


Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall
The End of Time
Oberon’s Grove by Philip Gardner, April 14, 2014

“…Mlles. O'Connor and DeGuise Langlois returned almost immediately for an Elliott Carter gem: Esprit rude/Esprit doux (1995). In this three-way conversation, flute and clarinet are joined by the dulcet sounds of the marimba (Mr. Rosenbaum at his most nuanced). The interchange of phrases - and sometimes of single notes - call for a finesse of dynamic expertise and pinpoint timing which the three players delivered with clarity...”


Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall
Chamber Music Society offers a Rautavaara premiere and memorable Messiaen
New York Classical Review by Sophia Vastek, April 12, 2014

“…Elliott Carter’s Esprit rude/Esprit doux II (1995) was written for Pierre Boulez’s 70th birthday. Rosenbaum played marimba in this cheeky, but dense piece, joined by flutist Tara Helen O’Connor and clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois. However thick, the musicians never stopped conversing with each other – imitating and responding in a dialogue marked with seamless clarity…”


Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall
Korngold Piano Quintet gleams in Chamber Music Society program
New York Classical Review by Eric C. Simpson, April 7, 2014

“…Charles Ives had a bite-sized role in the program, in his ephemeral Largo for violin, clarinet and piano. It is an intimate piece, but despite its brevity and small scale there is a charge running through its searching lines, underlined with tender grace by Hope, Han, and clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois.

De Guise-Langlois provided some sensational playing in the performance in Bartók’s Contrasts. The composer wrote the piece with Benny Goodman in mind, and the result is a spectacularly taxing, occasionally jazz-infused clarinet part. De Guise-Langlois tackled the piece with confidence, virtuosity, and sensitivity. She brought charming humor to the first movement’s limping theme every time it resurfaced, and was matched with tugging sorrow from Hope.

Eyes glued to each other, the trio were completely open to each other in the wandering, empty Pihenő, which featured limpid, spacious playing from pianist Gloria Chien. Hope switched violins for the scordatura opening of Sebes, the ferocious, spirited finale. Even in the midst of the movement’s fury, the players managed to find fierce joy in the music…”



Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall
Destination America @ Chamber Music Society
Oberon’s Grove by Philip Gardner, April 7, 2014

“…Mr. Hope's playing, which ranged from frantic virtuosity to moments of spine-tingling pianissimo subtlety, was matched by the superb 'singing' of Romie DeGuise-Langlois's clarinet. Their musical rapport was instantaneous, and the pianist Gloria Chien's rhythmic and coloristic vitality made for a very exciting presentation of this trio.

Charles Ives' LARGO began its musical life as a violin/piano duet; the composer later made another arrangement, adding a clarinet. Mr. Hope and Ms. DeGuise-Langlois returned for this rarity, joined by Wu Han at the piano. Here the violinist displayed ravishing control, his final note suspended on the air for what seemed an eternity: just remarkable! Ms. DeGuise-Langlois's playing is mellow and true, and Wu Han's gift for sustained delicacy combined with her colleagues to hold the audience in rapt attention…”



Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall
Goings on About Town
The New Yorker, Classical, April 7, 2014

“…An exceptional crew of soloists (including the violinist Daniel Hope and the clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois) come together to explore music by…”


The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Kaplan Penthouse
Fiddling That Inspired a Piano Quintet
The New York Times by Vivien Schweitzer, November 12, 2013

“…The clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois joined the ensemble for Osvaldo Golijov’s “Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind,” a 1994 work that has been championed by a number of ensembles, including the Kronos Quartet.

The musicians offered an intense and spiritual interpretation of the piece, whose three movements Mr. Golijov has said evoke Aramaic, Yiddish and Hebrew. His works often incorporate elements of classical idioms, as well as South American, Jewish liturgical and klezmer music. The klezmer influence is particularly strong in this piece, with its wailing, haunted clarinet lines expressively rendered by Ms. Guise-Langlois and the emotional arcs of the intense string parts potently rendered by the quartet…”



Astral Artists, Trinity Center for Urban Life
Memories, encounters and good news from Syria
Broad Street Review by Tom Purdom, January 22, 2013

For her Astral Artists recital debut, clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois arranged a program that combined new music with a historical survey. She commissioned two beautiful, highly creative new works for the event and teamed the premieres with three pieces that sketched in the development of the clarinet repertoire from Brahms to Bartok.

The first premiere on the program had originally been titled It's Raining in Syria, and it's listed that way in the program booklet that Astral prepares in advance of the season. Composer Kinan Azmeh subsequently renamed it A Scattered Sketchbook, presumably because the original title sounded like a reference to the current civil war in his native country.

Azmeh is a clarinetist and a graduate of Juilliard and the Damascus High Institute of Music, not to mention the Damascus School of Electrical Engineering. His revised title refers to the true subject of his piece: the musical scenes and influences he has encountered on his travels.

Behind the audience

Sketches opens with a bit of staging. Violinist Kristin Lee stood in the front of Trinity Center's hall, playing short figures that suggested the sound of Middle Eastern and Indian instruments. The clarinet answered from behind the audience, with a deep, sonorous melody that added another suggestion of Middle Eastern music and instrumentation.

The first movement casts the violin in an unusual role as an accompanying instrument. The violinist spends most of her time creating simple figures, much the way bass players normally accompany more glamorous instruments. It's a subordinate role, but it looked like it required tight discipline and close attention to Lee's partner.

In the second section, the players reversed roles and the pulses of the clarinet provided a soft drum that accompanied the violin. Later, the duo launched into a kind of Central European dance, complete with frantic fiddling. Altogether, the five sections of A Scattered Notebook run through a demanding, continuously absorbing kaleidoscope of clarinet and violin styles and techniques.

Memories of pregnancy

The second premiere was a suite for clarinet and piano by the clarinetist's father, Jerome Langlois, a composer and musician whose résumé includes film and TV sound tracks, along with chamber and symphonic music. Its overall title, Te Souviens-tu?, means "Do you remember?"; the titles of its three sections refer to a trip to the islands when the composer's wife was pregnant with the future source of the commission. It's a poetic subject, poetically evoked.

The opening section, "Music Box," avoids the temptation to tinkle and beautifully suggests half-heard sounds. The third section, "The Ocean," begins with the breezy cheeriness of the beach and ends with the majesty of the deeps. The entire piece displays a composer with a talent for producing not only clarinet melodies but a talented clarinetist as well.

In the opening movement of the Brahms sonata that ended the first half, de Guise-Langlois produced a clarinet line that sounded too cool to my ear. I missed the warmth and poignancy that I hear in the Brahms performances that suit my personal taste. Pianist Andrea Lam communicated more rapport with the Brahmsian spirit.

But the second movement sounded genuinely moving; and when they shaped the colors and melodies of the Debussy sonata that followed the intermission, both musicians played as if they spoke a familiar language.

Three survivors

De Guise-Langlois was the afternoon's star, and her tone, control and artistic vision proved she fully deserves the support that Astral gives the young musicians who survive its rigorous selection process. But her two partners were also Astral Artists who'd survived the same process.

The three young musicians ended the afternoon with a trio that explores the clarinet's potential and highlights the distinctive voices of all three instruments: Bartok's Contrasts for Violin, Clarinet, and Piano. It was a good choice for a finale, and they gave it an exceptionally lively performance.



Astral Artists, Trinity Center for Urban Life
Clarinetist's style echoes the human voice
Instead of sustaining a note, clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois holds it for a moment, then changes shades.

Inquirer Music Critic by Peter Dobrin, January 22, 2013

Does it matter why we hear the musicians we do? With its deep relationships and pedagogical bloodlines, Philadelphia risks a certain provincialism and clubbiness every time an artist steps out on stage.

Astral Artists, though, is a vital hedge against that dynamic, expressed most recently on Sunday afternoon at the Trinity Center in the Philadelphia recital debut of Romie de Guise-Langlois. Where we're used to hearing refinement across all registers, this clarinetist argued for variety of tone. Rather than sustaining a note and keeping its color for the duration, she often held it for a moment, and then changed shades.

It may seem like a small difference. But collected over the course of her two-hour recital with violinist Kristin Lee and pianist Andrea Lam, it added up to a style of playing more closely echoing the human voice than we're used to hearing in these parts.

The repertoire helped to shape her argument. The Montreal native and Lee played the premiere of A Scattered Sketchbook by Syrian composer Kinan Azmeh, a harmonically hypnotic piece that might be roughly thought of as Middle Eastern minimalism. With its quiet wails, improv-sounding violin part, and repetitious clarinet, it's much more about the journey than the destination, and we were happy to linger in its mists.

If the Brahms Sonata for Clarinet and Piano in F Minor, Opus 120, No. 1 needed more time before becoming a strongly developed interpretation, and the Debussy Première Rhapsodie was an appropriate joy, there was a much more sophisticated achievement to be found in Bartók's Contrasts for Violin, Clarinet and Piano. Like the Azmeh, it draws on folk material. Lam managed a wondrous evocation of a cimbalom in the first movement, "Verbunkos," a Hungarian dance, and Lee made two demonically gorgeous statements in "Sebes," a fast dance.

In section after section, one strong personality emboldened the other. Here you could hear Astral fulfilling not only its role as importer, but, too, as a wise force in the mysterious art of ensemble-making.
 


Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall
New York’s Chamber Music Society Serenades
Berkshire Fine Arts by Susan Hall, September 26, 2012
 “…Romie de-Guise-Langlois enchanted on the clarinet, often saucily leading the group…”


The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall
Starting the Season With an Autumn Evening of Sweet Serenades
The New York Times by James Oestreich, September 26, 2012

“…Throughout, society veterans mingled with young players, including two other standouts: James Austin Smith, an oboist, and Romie de Guise-Langlois, a clarinetist…”
 

Kean University Concert Artists Series
The Late Romantics
Felix Draeseke Society by Robert Rej, October 6, 2011
“...Draeseke's Clarinet Sonata in B-flat major, Op. 38 was performed by the young and talented Canadienne, Romie de Guise-Langlois,...” “...It was a dazzling performance, in particular in the rondo-finale which makes the heaviest demands on the players. The dynamic ranges called for from soft and evocative to brash and lively were thrilling to hear. Draeseke's tricky rhythmic motives were negotiated with both skill and virtuosity. Guise-Langlois had this music in her blood, and, apparently, in her mind as she scarcely glanced at her score frequently making eye-contact with Ms. Martinez for constant interplay between clarinetist and pianist...”

 

Boston Chamber Music Society
BCMS is Puckish to Profound
The Boston Musical Intelligencer by Michael Rocha, August 15, 2011
“...Clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois produced tones that ran the gamut from silky to impish, projecting an aura of centered calm while deftly handling the rapid musical turns of phrase.  Her technique was nimble and squawk-free; her presentation refreshingly straightforward....”

 

Stamford Symphony
Stamford symphony opens season with inspired performance
Newtimes.com by Jeffrey Johnson on Friday, October 22, 2010
“...This season has brought several new musicians in prominent seats to the orchestra. Among those who made an impact was clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois. She contributed immediately to the fine woodwind ensemble of the SSO and also played several inspired passages, like the line on top of the first variation in the second movement that one almost never notices...”

 

Chamber Music Northwest
Young artists leave it all on the floor at Chamber Music Northwest concert
Oregon Music News online by James Bash , July 25, 2010
“…With Romie de Guise-Langlois and David Shifrin on clarinet, Alana Vegter and William Purvis on horn, and Adrian Morejon and Milan Turkovic on bassoon, the quirky Serenade for Winds by Hungarian composer Mátyás Seiber received an engaging interpretation. This piece was not for the timid, and Guise-Langlois, as the lead player, superbly negotiated a minefield of treacherous phrases in which rhythms changed and notes went willy nilly all over the place…”

 

Lake Champlain Chamber Music Festival
Festival continues high standard
Times Argus online by Jim Lowe, February 6, 2010.
“… The concert also served to re-introduce Canadian clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois, a particularly warm and expressive musician, and a Marlboro Festival alumna....De Guise-Langlois, Kim on viola, and pianist Jeewon Park delivered a particularly sympathetic and moving performance... Beethoven’s Trio in B-flat Major, Opus 11, for clarinet, cello and piano received a stylish and particularly expressive performance. ...de Guise-Langlois and Aaron achieving a rich sound as well as Beethoven’s dramatic power and beauty…”

 

Zankel Hall, Carnegie Hall
Recalling Benny Goodman’s Classical Side
The New York Times, September 29, 2009, by Steve Smith                                                                                      
“…The Atria Ensemble — the clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois, the violinist Sunmi Chang and the pianist Hye-Yeon Park — offered a dazzling performance, perfectly pitched between technical assurance and earthy gusto…”

 

Zankel Hall, Carnegie Hall
“Yale in New York” Series: “The Classical Legacy of Benny Goodman”
The New Yorker, September 28, 2009
“…such as Bartók’s “Contrasts” and Copland’s Clarinet Concerto (performed by two superb soloists, Romie de Guise Langlois and David Shifrin)…”

 

Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall
Schubert With an Earthy Feeling
The New York Times, October 9, 2008, by Allan Kozinn
“…Romie de Guise-Langlois, the clarinetist, made this quirky duet into an animated, richly detailed dialogue, with the right balance of technique, nuance and humor…”

 

Marlboro Music
Marlboro opens 58th season
Times Argus online, July 18, 2008, by Jim Lowe
“…More subtle was the deeply felt performance by clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois, which proved quite touching…”

 

Paul Hall, Juilliard
‘Mountains’ and Messiaen in a Music Project’s Gift
The New York Times, January 14, 2008, by Bernard Holland
“…Romie de Guise-Langlois’ unaccompanied clarinet sequence, primed with hard, primary colors and simulated bird calls, was extraordinary…”           

 

Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall
Bracing Entertainment at Carnegie Hall
Musical America .com, October 12, 2007, by Susan Elliott
“...Romie de Guise-Langlois played a mean clarinet, which got even meaner in Bartok’s “Contrasts” for Violin, Clarinet and Piano, written just a year before Poulenc revised his Sextet in 1939. Bartok wrote the piece for Benny Goodman, a technical show-off of a work offering stratospheric squeals, winding modal melodies and rapid-fire runs. De Guise-Langlois managed it all with impressive poise and polish in another example of a well-matched ensemble...”

 

Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall
An Ensemble Chooses Well in Programs, Not in Name
The New York Times, October 12, 2007, by Anthony Tommasini
“...Speaking of Bartok’s “Contrasts,” Angelia Cho, a dynamic violinist; Romie de Guise-Langlois, a formidable clarinetist; and the brilliant Ms. Roe won deserved whoops and bravos from the audience for their visceral account of this familiar work, which had the music sounding freshly and audaciously modern. A fine ensemble also offered an elegant, tart and incisive performance of Poulenc’s Sextet for Piano and Winds...”

 

Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall
ACJW Ensemble
Feast of Music blog, October 10, 2007
“...Outstanding players included the Venezuelan pianist Gabriela Martinez, the Montreal-born clarinetist Romie de Guise-Langlois...”

 

photo: Claude-Simon Langlois