Morten Lauridsen

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Born: b. 1943
Nationality: American
Education/Training:
Whitman College, Washington; DMA from University of Southern California
Best Known For:
choral composition, especially O Magnum Mysterium, commissioned in 1994 by Marshall Rutter as a Christmas present to his wife, Terry Knowles, now enjoys widespread popularity and is one of the most cherished additions to the standard choral repertoire
Notable Compositions:
eight vocal cycles, including the Mid-Winter Songs, Les Chansons des Roses, Madrigali, Nocturnes and Lux Aeterna for chorus and a series of a cappella motets, including O Magnum Mysterium
Assignments:
in 1985 began with LAMC when Roger Wagner conducted his Mid-Winter Songs on Poems by Robert Graves at Dorothy Chandler Pavilion; was LAMC Composer in Residence from 1995-2001, LAMC premiered his O Magnum Mysterium, Lux Aeterna, Ave Maria and Voici le soir; is Distinguished Professor of Composition at USC's Thornton School of Music, where he has taught for more than forty years
Curious Facts:
life as a composer has been documented in Michael Stillwater’s award-winning film, Shining Night: A Portrait of Composer Morten Lauridsen
Notable Recordings:
works have been featured on over 200 CDs, 5 of which have received a Grammy nomination,  including O Magnum Mysterium by the Tiffany Consort, A Company of Voices by Conspirare, Sound The Bells by The Bay Brass and two all-Lauridsen discs entitled Lux Aeterna by the Los Angeles Master Chorale  and Polyphony with the Britten Sinfonia
Press:
"...the only American composer in history who can be called a mystic [whose] probing, serene work contains an elusive and indefinable ingredient which leaves the impression that all the questions have been answered.." -Nick Strimple, Choral Music of the Twentieth Century
Bio:
The music of Morten Lauridsen, Composer-in-Residence of the Los Angeles Master Chorale from 1995-2001 and Distinguished Professor of Composition at the USC Thornton School of Music, occupies a permanent place in the standard vocal repertoire of the Twentieth Century.  His seven vocal cycles  (Lux Aeterna, Les Chansons des Roses, Mid-Winter Songs on Poems by Robert Graves, Madrigali: Six “FireSongs” on Italian Renaissance Poems, Nocturnes and A Winter Come) and his series of a cappella sacred motets (including O Magnum Mysterium) are performed throughout the world and have been recorded on over 100 CDs, three of which have received Grammy nominations, including LAMC’s.
 
Mr. Lauridsen chaired the Composition Department at the USC Thornton School of Music from 1990-2002 and founded the School’s Advanced Studies Program in Film Scoring. He has held residencies as guest composer/lecturer at over four dozen universities.  
 
In speaking of Lauridsen's sacred works in his book, Choral Music in the Twentieth Century, Nick Strimple describes him as "the only American composer in history who can be called a mystic, (whose) probing, serene work contains an elusive and indefinable ingredient which leaves the impression that all the questions have been answered...  From 1993 Lauridsen's music rapidly increased in international popularity, and by century's end he had eclipsed Randall Thompson as the most frequently performed American choral composer."
 
In 2006, Morten Lauridsen was named an “American Choral Master” by the National Endowment for the Arts, and in 2007 he was awarded the National Medal of Arts, the highest artistic award in the United States, by the President in a White House ceremony “for his composition of radiant choral works combining musical beauty, power, and spiritual depth.”  In 2013 he was named Honorary Artistic Director of INTERKULTUR and the World Choir Games.  More information on Mr. Lauridsen is at mortenlauridsen.com.
REPERTOIRE : Nocturnes
CONCERTDATES
Almost A Cappella 05/04/2008
Lauridsen and Friends 03/10/2009
Tribute to Lauridsen 03/16/2014
REPERTOIRE : Sure on this Shining Night
CONCERTDATES
18th Annual High School Choir Festival 05/03/2007
Share 05/21/2006
The Ascending Voice III: An International Symposium of Sacred A Cappella Music 05/09/2013
24th Annual High School Choir Festival 04/26/2013
REPERTOIRE : O Magnum Mysterium
CONCERTDATES
47th Annual L.A. County Holiday Celebration 12/24/2006
Embrace 01/23/2005
And the Angels Sang 12/07/2003
Sounds of the Season 12/15/2002
Christmas with the Master Chorale 12/17/2000
Rejoice: Respighi + Rutter 12/14/2008
And the Angels Sang 12/09/2003
Home for the Holidays 12/17/1995
Home for the Holidays 12/18/1994
Rejoice! A Classical Christmas 12/11/2011
Lux Aeterna at St. Andrew's 11/06/2011
50th Season Celebration 09/22/2013
Tribute to Lauridsen 03/16/2014
The Ascending Voice III: An International Symposium of Sacred A Cappella Music 05/09/2013
Rejoice! A Cappella Christmas 12/14/2014
REPERTOIRE : Lux Aeterna
CONCERTDATES
Illumine 10/03/2004
The Maestro's Favorites 04/20/2001
Contemporary Classics 10/24/1999
Lauridsen and Friends 03/10/2009
An Evening with the Los Angeles Master Chorale and Paul Salamunovich 05/10/1997
An Evening with the Los Angeles Master Chorale and Paul Salamunovich 04/26/1997
Lux Aeterna 10/16/2011
Lux Aeterna 06/17/2017
Lux Aeterna 06/18/2017
REPERTOIRE : O nata lux
CONCERTDATES
College Choir Festival 11/13/2004
Rejoice! A Classical Christmas 12/11/2011
Lux Aeterna at St. Andrew's 11/06/2011
Rejoice! A Cappella Christmas 12/14/2014
REPERTOIRE : Les Chansons des Roses
CONCERTDATES
Mystic Chant 04/28/1996
Valentine's Concert 02/04/2000
Songs of Love 02/13/2000
Tribute to Lauridsen 03/16/2014
REPERTOIRE : Mid-Winter Songs (piano version)
CONCERTDATES
Music for Midwinter 01/28/1990
St. Mark's to Mozart 11/09/1985
Composers from the Left Coast 11/22/2009
Tribute to Lauridsen 03/16/2014
LAMC Chamber Singers 04/16/2010
REPERTOIRE : Dirait-on (from Los Chansons des Roses)
CONCERTDATES
12th Annual High School Choir Festival 04/27/2001
21st Annual High School Choir Festival 04/16/2010
25th Annual High School Choir Festival 05/02/2014
REPERTOIRE : Ave Maria
CONCERTDATES
Made in L.A. 11/15/2015
REPERTOIRE : Madrigali (Six Fire Songs)
CONCERTDATES
Madrigal Magic 03/11/2000
Tribute to Lauridsen 03/16/2014
REPERTOIRE : O Magnum Mysterium (men only)
CONCERTDATES
Made in LA 04/14/2000
REPERTOIRE : Epilogue Voici le Soir
CONCERTDATES
Great Opera Choruses 05/18/2008
REPERTOIRE : Ave Dulcissima Maria
CONCERTDATES
Tribute to Lauridsen 03/16/2014
REPERTOIRE : Canticle/O Vos Omnes
CONCERTDATES
Tribute to Lauridsen 03/16/2014
REPERTOIRE : Prayer
CONCERTDATES
Tribute to Lauridsen 03/16/2014
REPERTOIRE : Lament for Pasiphaë
CONCERTDATES
HSCF: Chamber Singers 05/02/2014
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