Oregon Repertory Singers opens our 45th season by celebrating the release of a much-anticipated CD featuring pieces by Morten Lauridsen and other Pacific Northwest composers. Lauridsen returns for the release of the choir’s new CD, Shadows on the Stars, featuring his Madrigali recorded live in April 2017, alongside other music by Lauridsen and works by Joan Szymko, John Muehleisen, Stacey Philipps, Giselle Wyers, and Naomi LaViolette and Steve Goodwin. For this concert, Lauridsen will accompany the choir for his Sure on this Shining Night and Ya Eres Mía, while accompanist Naomi LaViolette will join the singers for Lauridsen’s Mid-Winter Songs, a cycle on poems by Robert Graves.
The second half of the program turns to an Estonian composer with whom Portland and ORS have nurtured a special bond. Oregon Repertory Singers was the first American choir to bring Veljo Tormis, who died last year at age 86, to the United States. The singers will perform his Vepsa Talv for men’s voices, Lauliku Lapsepoli for treble voices, and his epic tour de force, Raua Needmine (Curse Upon Iron). In recognition and celebration of his 35 years leading ORS, we have invited emeritus conductor Gilbert Seeley back to the podium to conduct another Tormis piece on the program.