Oregon Repertory Singers is currently full, and auditions for the adult choir are closed until further notice. If you are interested in auditioning for the choir, please email [email protected] with your name, phone number, and voice part to be placed on an audition waiting list.
We cannot guarantee an audition date at this time.
Oregon Repertory Singers, formed in 1974, performs a wide range of repertoire at a high artistic level. The volunteer choir of over 90 members is led by artistic director Dr. Ethan Sperry, who joined in 2011, succeeding Gil Seeley’s 35 year tenure as director. Ethan is also the Director of Choral Activities at Portland State University and holds a BA in philosophy from Harvard College and MM and DMA degrees in choral conducting from the University of Southern California. Sperry’s programming often highlights new works, living composers, and local artists.
Highlights from recent seasons include ORS’ Portland premiere of Rodion Shchedrin’s The Sealed Angel, praised by OregonLive as "a revelatory, where-has-this-music-been-hiding experience." (Apr ‘15) The closing concert of the 42nd season, Critical Mass, featured masses for double choir by Vaughan Williams and Martin and was lauded by Oregon ArtsWatch: “Thanks, ORS, for your moments of ear candy, and genuine emotive singing.” (Apr. ‘16).
Oregon Repertory Singers recently took a risk with an exciting but untested program, presenting the Portland premiere of a new work by an unknown composer: Sir Karl Jenkins’ The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace. This anti-war mass incorporates nontraditional and secular texts from several sources, resulting in an interfaith, cross-cultural call for peace. The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra accompanied the choir, and acclaimed choral director Bruce Browne reflected on the concert in an Oregon ArtsWatch review:
"This year’s edition of Oregon Repertory Singers is the best in a long while. Intonation, phrasing and balance/blend are superb; each section stays firmly within its own sleeve of sound. Dedicated to bringing some of the finest unknown choral works to the Portland community. Sperry and the choir may carry on their risk taking, and reward us all in the process."
Oregon Repertory Singers continued its ambitious programming with Love and Fire in April 2017, featuring some of the greatest American and Spanish choral music in a program taken on tour to Barcelona in July. Pacific NW native and National Medal of Arts winner Morten Lauridsen assisted in preparing the choir for his Madrigali, a set of six “fire songs” on Italian Renaissance poetry, for this concert. Following the concerts, and with tremendous enthusiasm and support from Dr. Lauridsen, the choir announced plans to record its first album in decades. Scheduled for release in fall 2018, the album will feature and celebrate composers from the Pacific NW, and will include live recordings from the concerts of Madrigali and Sure on this Shining Night, with Dr. Lauridsen playing the piano accompaniment.
Programming plans for upcoming seasons include Durufle’s Requiem, Handel’s Israel in Egypt, Benjamin Britten’s Ceremony of Carols, and celebrated works by Arvo Pärt.
Oregon Repertory Singers photographed September 2015
photo by Paige Baker