Feminine Musique

Lori Laitman

LORI LAITMAN is one of America’s most prolific and widely performed composers of vocal music. She has composed three operas, an oratorio, choral works and over 250 songs, setting the words of classical and contemporary poets, among them the lost voices of poets who perished in the Holocaust. The Journal of Singing has written: “It is difficult to think of anyone before the public today who equals her exceptional gifts for embracing a poetic text and giving it new and deeper life through music.”

The Three Feathers, Laitman’s one-act children’s opera with librettist Dana Gioia (past Chairman of The National Endowment for the Arts) was commissioned by the Center for the Arts at Virginia Tech and produced in conjunction with VA Tech, Opera Roanoke and Blacksburg Children’s Chorale. The opera, based on a Grimm’s fairy tale, premiered on October 17, 2014 in a production directed by Beth Greenberg and conducted by Scott Williamson.

Opera Colorado will present the professional premiere of Laitman’s opera The Scarlet Letter in May 2016. The libretto, based on the Hawthorne classic, is by Colorado’s former Poet Laureate, David Mason. Laitman and Mason are currently developing the opera Ludlow, based on Mason’s award-winning verse novel about the 1914 Colorado mining town disaster. They also collaborated on Vedem, a Holocaust oratorio commissioned by Music of Remembrance. The work premiered in Seattle in May 2010, and Naxos released it on CD in 2011.

Laitman’s music has steadily gained recognition, both in the U.S. and abroad. In 2012, she was commissioned by Opera America to compose a song for The Opera America Songbook in celebration of the opening of the National Opera Center in NYC. The National Music of Women in the Arts presented Laitman’s works on The Shenson Series. The Washington Master Chorale commissioned and premiered her Dickinson choral song cycle, The Earth and I, subsequently released on the Albany label.

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