FA Creative Arts Feature: Mory Ortman and Sherilyn Ortman

Freeman Academy Creative Arts Feature  Mory Ortman & Sherilyn Ortman

“It Takes Two to Tango:  Sampling the Forbidden Fruits”

“It Takes Two to Tango:  Sampling the Forbidden Fruits” comes to Pioneer Hall, Sunday, May 14 at 7:00 pm.  Mory Ortman and Sherilyn Ortman perform on two pianos featuring a repertoire of varying genres and styles. This will mark the third time the duo has performed in Freeman.

The program will explore the theme of forbidden fruit (forbidden at least within both performers’ traditional Mennonite heritage) and begins with a set of dances:  Malagueña (from the Spanish Suite Andalucia) by Ernesto Lecuona, Ballet from Orphée et Eurydice by Christoph Willibald Gluck/arranged by Greg Anderson, and Jamaican Rumba composed by Arthur Benjamin. The next set consists of The Garden of Eden by William Bolcom and They All Sang Yankee Doodle by Dave Brubeck.  Ortman and Ortman will close the program with Three Tangos by Astor Piazzolla and Three Waltzes for Two Pianos arranged by Greg Anderson.

Dr. Mory Ortman works as a freelance musician in New York City, where his work includes accompanying auditions and lessons, coaching, and music directing. Mory received B.A.s in Music and German from Bethel College (North Newton, KS) and went on to pursue graduate degrees in collaborative piano from the Eastman School of Music and Arizona State University. In addition to his freelance work, Mory serves as the primary accompanist for Manhattan Concert Productions (MCP), which keeps him concertizing most weekends in the spring, mostly in New York, but also in Chicago, New Orleans, and various other locales. He also sings in the Manhattan Chorale, a professional choral ensemble affiliated with MCP.

Mory has a strong knowledge of musical styles and is equally comfortable in the classical and musical theatre realms. His versatility keeps him in high demand as a recitalist, accompanist, and cabaret performer throughout the greater New York City area and beyond. Summer finds Mory working at Quisisana Resort in Maine where he serves as the Music Director of the classical program and accompanist to many of the musical theatre programs as well. The resort produces a combination of opera, musical theatre, cabaret and chamber music and is renowned for the high caliber performances presented.

Sherilyn Ortman graduated from Bethel College (North Newton, KS) with B.A.s in Music and German. Though accepted for graduate studies at the University of Oklahoma, she opted to marry Freeman native Will Ortman and return to the farm; she has never regretted this decision.

Since moving to Freeman, Sherilyn has been active in music at the Salem-Zion Mennonite Church and has accompanied such events and groups as the Dakota Chorale; the Swiss Choral Society; the USD All-State Chorus workshop; the Lucy Palermo Weed String Competition; the Mennonite Schools Council Choir Festival; Schmeckfest; multiple student and faculty recitals at area universities; and too many Freeman Academy students and ensembles to count. In the past 20 years, she has also given lessons to nearly 140 piano students.

Sherilyn and Will have three sons (ages 11, 9 and 7). These days, other duties have relegated piano to an occasional pastime, but Sherilyn remains grateful to be part of a school and a community that so consistently promote excellence and a love of the arts, and that allow her to use her gifts whenever she chooses.

This concert is being sponsored by Modern Woodmen of America, Shane Vetch, Marlo and Mavis Ortman, and the Freeman Academy Creative Arts department.

Tickets may be purchased at the door and include a dessert reception after the performance.  Ticket prices:  $15/Adult and $8/student.  The public is warmly invited to attend.


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