I have enjoyed each opportunity I have had to make music with Lee Kesselman. He is a fine musician, always ready to move beyond the page into the world of communicative sound. He is a much-loved conductor of groups large and small, able to lead them through a lively rehearsal process into meaningful performance. And as a human being, he is a true friend with a delightful sense of humor and of what is truly important in our lives.
— Composer/conductor Alice Parker
The heart of a poet, the mind of a philosopher, a spirit of quiet observation, these qualities infuse Lee’s music and music-making. His music is his distinct voice and one musicians sense is authentic and organic. I have and will continue to program Lee’s music with singers of all ages.
— Dr. Sandra Snow, mirabai director & MSU Professor
Portland Symphonic Girlchoir has performed many pieces from his large body of work, with a number of them becoming Girlchoir favorites!
Lee R. Kesselman is a gifted composer with a relevant voice for today.
— Roberta Q. Jackson & Debra D. Burgess
When Lee Kesselman sits down to compose, he is writing for the ages. He is using his lifetime of knowledge, an unending curiosity, and a unique ability to synthesize diverse styles to create music that stirs the intellect, feeds the heart, and challenges the soul.
— Nick Page, composer, conductor & songleader
Lee Kesselman's music has always been part of my core repertoire for community, school, and festival choirs. Across all difficulty levels, I find his pieces to be artfully crafted with something interesting to say. He knows how to write for the voice at all stages of development, and his music honors the singer's intelligence and quest for excellence.
— Dr. Mary Lynn Doherty, Northern Illinois University
Lee Kesselman is the consummate inquisitive musician - educator, conductor, composer, performer. And his brilliant career continues to blossom. His interests lie in the possible. Can't wait to see/hear what comes next!
— Jim Yarbrough, retired choral conductor & vocalist
Illinois-based composer Lee Kesselman contributes his own take on the subject of bees (and as a beekeeper, I certainly approve!), with (BUZZINGS) Three Pieces about Bees, texts by Emily Dickinson. The last song, “Bee! I’m expecting you!”, is a delightful monologue, full of humor and clever vocal writing that’s more like speech than song.
— David Vernier, ClassicsToday.com
No words can describe the communal sentiments of pain and love these musicians created as they carried the audience through an emotional journey beginning with Mozart’s Ch’io mi scordi di te, through Ravel’s Kaddisch in memory of the Tree of Life tragedy, to the tender, tear-welling climax of the performance, Lee Kesselman’s setting of e.e. cummings’s poem, “i carry your heart,” which received a standing ovation.
— Katherine Hetz, Chatham University Music Review