Len Ballantine is one of Canada’s most highly-talented composers and arrangers. The Elmer Iseler Singers have been privileged to sing many of his works in concert and on recording including ‘Amazing Grace’ and ‘Swing Low’. He is a brilliant writer whose works are extremely well-written and make a tremendous connection with audiences.
As conductor of the 100-voice Peterborough Singers, I have had the pleasure of working with Len Ballantine as arranger, clinician and commissioned composer. We keep coming back for more! His work is always of the highest quality, it is superbly written, and eminently singable. Our commissions include “The Night Of…” trilogy, a set of full-length Christmas anthems for choir, brass band, percussion and piano that we have featured at our Christmas concerts over the last decade, to great acclaim from audience and choristers alike. We have found Len to be an inspiring clinician, whose workshopping significantly enhances our singing. I am so pleased to discover that Len is now freeing up time to broaden the scope of his work with choirs!
Whether composing an original work on commission or creating extraordinary arrangements for our annual Christmas concerts, Leonard Ballantine has been a fantastic resource for the Hannaford Street Silver Band. His professional approach and nuanced musical voice are of the highest order and accomplishment.
I have had the good fortune to perform the music of Len Ballantine and always with great success. Len’s obvious skill and craftsmanship as a composer/arranger is abundant and his works, while realistic in their demands, are always textually sensitive, creatively daring, imaginatively bold and, above all, very satisfying to perform.
Len Ballantine is a consummate musician superbly gifted as a performer (pianist and conductor) and composer/arranger. In the nearly four decades I have had the privilege to know and work with him I have delighted in his excellent choral works (original settings and arrangements), his ability to shape and administer complex and large-scale musical concerts, his insightful, sensitive conducting of both chamber and large choirs, and his artistry on the keyboard.
I have always found him to be an amiable person to work with, accessible, agreeable, and accommodating. He is also highly gifted as a speaker, whether about music or about the Gospel of Christ, for which he and his talented wife, Heather, are true ministers.
I also emphasize that both are highly successful teachers in the arts, adept in working with the widest range of skill levels, backgrounds and generations. I have had the privilege of observing on multiple occasions their fine, marked success in workshops, clinics, and summer arts camps.
Len was an inspiration when developing my art as a choral composer. I value his opinion and respect him greatly as a fellow musician and composer. He has been a great encourager including writing creative reviews for my work and ensembles.