I am writing you with pleasure to enthusiastically voice my strong support for the splendid and unique Oregon Repertory Singers.
This community chorus of over a hundred voices held a long history under conductor Gilbert Seely until the baton was passed to Dr. Ethan Sperry. Under his superb leadership for the past half-dozen years or so the ORS has now evolved into an elite civic chorus, the finest of this genre that I have ever experienced over my long career.
My first encounter with the ORS under Dr. Sperry occurred three years ago when they programmed my most challenging choral cycle, the twenty-minute a cappella “Madrigali: Six ‘FireSongs’ on Italian Renaissance Poems” that only the most sophisticated choruses attempt to perform. The live performance of the “Madrigali” was simply stunning, so much so that I persuaded the ORS board of directors to put into action a plan for a full CD recording of the Singers to include works by a number of talented composers based in the Pacific Northwest.
The result is the acclaimed ORS recording “Shadows on the Stars” which was the recipient last year of the American Prize for the most outstanding recording by a civic chorus. The recording speaks for itself as a demonstration of choral artistry at its finest.
The Oregon Repertory Singers has brought much pride to its hometown of Portland, Oregon and has demonstrated a commitment to bringing to this community the opportunity of hearing live choral music performed at a level not previously experienced there.
Very truly yours,
Morten Lauridsen DMA, DMus, DFA
Distinguished Professor Emeritus, USC Thornton School of Music Recipient, 2016 ASCAP Foundation “Life in Music Award” Honorary Artistic President, INTERKULTUR/World Choir Games Composer-in-Residence, Los Angeles Master Chorale, 1994-2001 Recipient, 2007 National Medal of Arts