Dora Ohrenstein, Biography


A singer of striking versatility, soprano Dora Ohrenstein has been widely hailed as a gifted interpreter of art song, vocal chamber works and contemporary music. She has premiered countless works written by leading composers, and is equally at home in European art song, baroque and medieval music, and cabaret. Her most recent solo CD on Koch International Classics, Restless Spirits, was praised in andante , the on-line classical music journal, as ?a fascinating assortment of wild women! In her recital of works by Ad?s, Poulenc, Purcell, Bolcom, Shields, and Hoiby, soprano Ohrenstein offers the vocal equivalent of Meryl Streep, bringing an equally high degree of artistry to all the colorful characters she portrays.?
Ms. Ohrenstein is much sought after as a chamber musician, and has performed with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, MayMusic in Charlotte, the Brentano Quartet, Cassatt Quartet, Kronos Quartet, Relache, Essential Music, Sequitur, Modern Music, SEM Ensemble and Newband, among others. For a decade she was solo vocalist of the Philip Glass Ensemble, appearing at major halls and festivals throughout the world, including numerous appearances at Carnegie and Avery Fischer Halls, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Boston's Symphony Hall, the Frankfurt Opera, Sydney Opera House, Adelaide Festival, and numerous tours to Germany, Italy, Japan, and Australia.
Ms. Ohrenstein is featured in Urban Diva, a staged recital of works written for her by Anthony Davis, Anne LeBaron, Scott Johnson and Ben Johnston and funded by the National Endowment for the arts. Urban Diva premiered in Amsterdam and at Dance Theatre Workshop in New York, and has been presented at the Walker Arts Center, the Cabrillo Festival, the Spoleto Festival USA, Honolulu Academy of the Arts, and many other venues. These performances, as well as the Urban Diva disc on CRI?s Emergency Music series, were widely praised for daring spirit and extraordinarily versatile vocalism.
She has collaborated in other theatrical works with dancer Karen Bamonte, in the cabaret production Songs of Sex and Solitude with the New York ensemble Sequitur, Joshua Fried's Headphone Follies; dancer Karole Armitage?s Life Story at the Joyce Theater, and Conrad Cumming's opera Photo-Op. As Director of the opera workshop at University at Buffalo, she created Mozart in the Middle, a production drawing parallels between scenes from Mozart's operas and letters dramatizing his relationship with his father, a multimedia production of Dido and Aeneas set in contemporary times, and a new production of Handel?s Serse.
Ms. Ohrenstein was Executive Producer and one of four singers on a four-disc set released in 1994 by Albany Records of The Complete Songs of Charles Ives, critically heralded as an important landmark in the recording of American music. She also produced and performs on Nothing Divine is Mundane, a recording of Virgil Thomson songs released by Albany Records to glowing reviews. Her discography includes several CBS Masterworks recordings of music by Philip Glass, Conrad Cummings? Photo Op on CRI, a New World recording of music by Ben Johnston, an XI release of music Mary Ellen Childs, a medieval chant recording on Nonesuch, and additional releases on the Private Music, Dossier and Opus One labels.




restless spirits CD

NATS article

NYSTA letter



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