"Bookending the Grieg were two pieces by György Ligeti whose 1951 Concert Românesc began the evening. Despite being an early work, it wasn't premiered until 2000, having been banned. Tonal in nature, this curious work set a high bar for the rest of the evening. The folk melodies were given very different characters from Bebeşelea, with vivid colour changes and different rhythmic energies, this work came alive evocatively, almost dancing.... During the interval, the audience were requested to set off 100 metronomes (lent by Bebeşelea) arranged along the platform edge for a ‘performance’ of Ligeti’s 1962 Poème symphonique.
The metronomes, however, provided the arching link with Beethoven’s succinct Eighth Symphony. Bebeşelea showed an affinity here, stressing its rhythmic and motivic nature. The four vivacious movements brimmed with energy and the UO sounded radiant in the hall’s acoustic. Some of Bebeşelea’s orchestral balances had a quirkiness about them, emphasising the winds and brass especially."
Leighton Jones - Bachtrack, 23. October 2022 about Gabriel Bebeşelea’s concert with the Ulster Orchestra
"Weber's Symphony No. 1 in C major - an ideal piece for Gabriel Bebeselea, who tonally loves it lush and juicy, and who also possesses the Kapellmeister quality to be able to inspire the musicians for 1b works. An inner glow emanates from the Konzerthausorchester on Friday, melody, middle voices and bass fundamentals develop acoustic depth, because each of the participants feels addressed by the maestro, regardless of whether they are currently playing a main or supporting role in this team play."
Frederik Hanssen - Tagesspiegel, 26th of September 2020 about Gabriel Bebeselea's concert with the Konzerthausorchester Berlin
"The orchestra, conducted by rising young Romanian conductor Gabriel Bebeșelea, began the concert’s second half with the Asian premiere of George Enescu’s Pastorale-Fantaisie for small orchestra. First performed in 1899, this ten-minute long gem was “lost” until rediscovered by Bebeșelea, who gave its first modern reading in 2017. Opening with low strings in a drone, the bucolic and likely folk-inspired music unfolded beautifully in F major. Then came a short but tempestuous central section with a hint of a fugue taking place, filled with stock-in-trade orchestral stormy effects, rising to a climactic high before ending in quiet bliss. Sounds familiar?
Then the penny dropped, as this was the young Romanian polymath’s tribute to the greatest symphonist of all, Ludwig van Beethoven, whose “Pastoral” Symphony was to follow. This stroke of programming nous was not initially apparent on paper, but totally succeeded in the concert hall. The performance of the symphony was just as good. Conducting from memory, Bebeșelea kept the narrative taut and the music breathing. The litheness and goodly pace resembled period instrument performances but without the wheeziness and thinness of textures."
Chang Tou Liang - Bachtrack, 24th of November 2019 about Gabriel Bebeşelea’s debut concert with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra
"Full marks to Gabriel Bebeşelea and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra for originality in the programming of this concert, entitled rather grandly “A Voyage of Invention”. Using Mozart’s popular Symphony no. 41 in C major as the crowd-pleaser, they filled the rest of the space with interesting and comparatively rarely performed works: George Enescu’s Orchestral Suite no. 2 in C major, Saint-Saëns’ Violin Concerto no. 3 in B Minor and Ciprian Porumbescu’s Ballade for Violin and Orchestra. Bebeşelea, making his debut with the RPO, is currently Principal Conductor of the Transylvania State Philharmonic Orchestra and his facility with the music of his country is clear to see.
The Enescu is a piece full of life and it is to be regretted that it does not receive more outings...Bebeşelea brought a warm bustle to the opening Overture and real colour to the gypsy-like Sarabande. The rather ponderous Menuet grave was given heft by the brass, underlain by rather glitzy strings. The great virtue of Bebeşelea’s interpretation was the care with which the folksy elements of the work were brought out and gently textured.
Porumbescu is hardly a staple feature in any orchestra Western orchestra...His Ballad is probably his best known work outside Romania and shows a composer of advanced abilities deeply in thrall to the music of his country. Tomescu returned to the stage retaining the flair of the concerto’s finale for a glossy, boldly phrased interpretation, with Bebeşelea drawing a deeply felt, nuanced performance from the orchestra, judged to perfect degree against the soloist."
Dominic Lowe - Bachtrack, 3rd of May 2019 about Gabriel Bebeşelea’s debut concert with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
"Describing the work as a “confession of the soul” by the composer, Sibelius’ Symphony no. 2 in D major is a full of extremes of emotion, which Bebeşelea clearly understood...Bebeşelea was consistently clear in his direction and the highly articulate playing featured prominent brass and woodwind lines. The second movement was perhaps one of the darkest renditions I’ve encountered. Although acknowledged as being based around Don Juan, the poetry of Walt Whitman came to mind, such as "On the Beach at Night Alone", as what appeared was a moody and atmospheric nightscape. The range of expression here was remarkable as each phrase was shaped like raising and crashing waves, each one different and unpredictable. Whether or not it was Bebeşelea’s intention to create such a picture in the mind’s eye, it was musically captivating and emotionally driven with effective rubato.
The Ulster Orchestra’s playing was first rate and the players followed Bebeşelea’s every direction….What Bebeşelea has done is made me re-examine overly familiar repertoire and listen with fresh ears and renewed interest, which is no bad thing."
Leighton Jones - Bachtrack, 20th of January 2019
about Gabriel Bebeşelea’s concert with the Ulster Orchestra
"The surprisingly peppery Pastorale fantaisie of 1899 – which also appears to be a first recording – receives a full-blooded performance. If you’re already an Enescu fan, you needn’t hesitate."
Richard Bratby - Gramophone, 2nd of November 2018
about about the "Strigoii / Ghosts / Geister" CD
“The Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, under the impressive musical direction of Gabriel Bebeşelea (since 2016/17 Chief Conductor of the "Transylvania" State Philharmonic Orchestra), thrilled from the first moment with an atmospherically dense orchestral performance that captivated the listener. Bebeşelea, who also attracted attention in Pesaro as the conductor of Rossini's "Il Viaggio à Reims" [...], gives "Strigoii" another calling card for his outstanding musical and dramatic talent.”
Dr. Ingobert Waltenberger - Onlinemerker.com, 23rd of September 2018 about the "Strigoii / Ghosts / Geister" CD
"...and this is said by somebody who, despite his youth, has devoted to Enescu's works years of studying and researching in the archives. He has an unstoppable passion for scouting and finding forgotten or lost scores (see the album released last night after the concert - “Strigoii" - and five other discovered manuscripts which he is working on!), to which an increasingly rare to find these days tenacity to overcome technical and artistic difficulties, and a seriousness that brought him very much closer to me over time.
Warm, extremely attentive to the stage partners, he conducts the orchestra firmly, letting the love for music and the respect for those who have composed it pass through with every gesture. I do not think there is a concert of Gabriel Bebeşelea that does not stick to your soul, but “Poème Roumain" from the evening of the 1st of September will remain as memorable. With the choir placed in the back of the hall and an orchestra eager to impress, Gabriel Bebeşelea knew how to mediate the relationship between musicians and viewers, so that the music would win. Raising on his tiptoe, dancing when Romanian folklore rhythms were heard, imposing categorically rhythm ruptures when it was necessary, but above all natural, of an overwhelming naturalness - in other words: Gabriel Bebeşelea.
It is amazing how he penetrates into the composer's mind and how he manages to give value and personality to each musical note and phrase. Gabriel Bebeşelea is a very good explorer and a great lover of people, and when these qualities meet with love for music, we are dealing with a great musician. And I can only feel privileged when I listen to him live."
Nona Ropotan - Bookhub.ro, 2nd of September 2018 about the Opening Concert of the "George Enescu" International Competition
"Gabriel Bebeşelea led with eloquent gestures of great precision, inspiring for the instrumentalists. The minuteness through which he treated the details, excelled. The knowledge of style, the appropriate agogic to highlight the essences, appeared in all lectures."
Costin Popa - Adevărul, 7th of March 2018
about Gabriel Bebeșelea's concert with Musica Ricercata
"A wonderful give and take between conductor, soloist and orchestra": the audience is full of praise during the break. From the selection of the pieces, to the performers, to the program, everything was right at the Würth Philharmonic's latest concert with star violinist Sarah Chang and up-and-coming conductor Gabriel Bebeșelea…The kick-off is done by Aldemaro Romero’s “Fuga con Pajarillo”, showpiece of the Venezuelan Youth Orchestra, Gabriel Bebeșelea (1987) presents the powerful piece of rhythm, passion and melancholy, though with youthful verve, but more soulful tasting the soft tones than the much acclaimed Gustavo Dudamel (1981)."
Leonore Welzin - Heilbronner Stimme, 5th of February 2018
about Gabriel Bebeșelea's concert with the Würth Philharmonic and Sarah Chang
"The central piece featured Enescu's Suite No 1, with the orchestra under the impressive direction of Gabriel Bebeșelea, the current principal conductor of the Transylvania State Philharmonic Orchestra...Overall this was a concert to brighten any dull day...Those who stayed away missed a treat."
Alf McCreary - Belfast Telegraph, 26th of January 2018
about Gabriel Bebeșelea's debut concert with the Ulster Orchestra
"The event is rounded off by the accurate performance of the Orchestra Sinfonica G. Rossini under the baton of Gabriel Bebeşelea, who leads the orchestra through the multi-faceted score with a sure hand, so that in the end, there is a big round of applause for everyone involved."
Thomas Molke - Online Musik Magazin, 15th of August 2016
about “Il Viaggio a Reims” at the G. Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro
"Gabriel Bebeşelea led the G. Rossini Symphony Orchestra. He did it with professionalism and concern to render Rossini's specificity, showing a deep and serious study. The detailed analysis was sound and the musicians played with filigree precision, inspired by the elegant gestures of the conductor and the feeling for the stylistic culture Bebeşlea exuded in every melodic drawing.....The Rossini Festival, where he enjoyed a hearty applause, was an important step in the career of the young conductor."
Costin Popa - Adevărul 9th of September 2016
about “Il Viaggio a Reims” at the G. Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro
"Gabriel Bebeşelea was conducting. In Romania, the 27-year-old counts as the biggest white hope. Even at the final piece of the evening, Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 5 in E minor, Op. 64, he led the orchestra as gentle as decided. [...] With empathy and skill, the stormy, explosive, deceptive gentle and sorrowful mood colors of the symphony were handed over. The audience offered standing ovations, two encores followed."
Steve Kuberczyk-Stein - HNA Kassel Mitte, 03. August 2015
about the Moldovan National Youth Orchestra's performance at the Kultursommer Nordhassen