Lori's Solo Recordings

On the Albany Records Label

Within These Spaces

Lori’s fourth album of solo vocal works, Within These Spaces (Amazon, iTunes) was released May 1, 2009. The recording features artists Jennifer Check, Karyn Friedman, Amanda Gosier, Sari Gruber, Warren Jones, Lori Laitman and Randall Scarlata. The CD contains 34 new songs, all composed since 2000 to poetry written between the years of 1612 and 2008.

“One hundred years hence, when critics look back at the art songs of our era, there will be many fine composers to laud and applaud, but few will deserve higher praise than Lori Laitman. …With nearly 200 songs already to her credit, there seems to be not the slightest diminishment in the expressive impact of her writing or the bracing originality of her ideas. To paraphrase a comment once made about the prolific Camille Saint-Saëns, Laitman seems to create great songs as easily and naturally as a tree produces apples, and one might add that hers are especially delicious and distinctive.” (The Journal of Singing)

“This is music of depth and richness that connects with the soul.” (American Record Guide)

“Her affinity for the voice…is beyond doubt…her songs represent outpourings of great beauty.” (Fanfare Magazine)

Becoming a Redwood

Lori's third album, Becoming a Redwood (Amazon, iTunes), was released October, 2006. The songs on the recording are compositions in partnership with contemporary poets Mary Oliver, Thomas Lux, Dana Gioia, Paul Muldoon, Anne Ranasinghe, Karen Gershon and C.G.R. Shepard. The CD features sopranos Jennifer Check, Sari Gruber and Barbara Quintiliani; mezzo-soprano Patricia Green; tenor Robert McPherson; baritones Lee Poulis, Randall Scarlata and William Sharp; bass Gary Poster; cellists Thomas Kraines and Marcy Rosen; violinist Juliette Kang; and pianists Warren Jones, Lori Laitman and Kirsten Taylor.

"An extraordinarily impressive achievement…[which indicates] increasing evidence of a major talent. Lori Laitman's beautiful, sensitively crafted songs deserve to be performed widely."(Gramophone Magazine)


Lori's second solo album - Dreaming (Amazon, iTunes) - was released on May 1, 2003. The CD features singers Jennifer Check, Patricia Green, Sari Gruber, Randall Scarlata and William Sharp; doublebassist Gary Karr; and pianists Warren Jones and Lori Laitman.

"This is a stunning collection of widely varied songs by one of the finest art song composers on the scene today...Lori Laitman deservedly stands shoulder to shoulder with Ned Rorem for her uncommon sensitivity to text, her loving attention to the human voice and its capabilities, and her extraordinary palette of musical colors and gestures.” (The Journal of Singing)


The first album comprised entirely of Lori's compositions, Mystery (Amazon, iTunes), was released August 1, 2000 on the Albany Records label, and features singers Phyllis Bryn-Julson, Lauren Wagner, and William Sharp; cellist Thomas Kraines; pianists Seth Knopp and Lori Laitman; and saxophonist Gary Louie.

"Composer Lori Laitman knows how to let the voice soar and explore…spinning lyrical neo-romantic vocal lines over shifting post- modern sonorities." (Opera News)

Other Vocal Recordings

On the Naxos Records Label

The Scarlet Letter

The Scarlet Letter received its professional world premiere in May 2016 with Opera Colorado, under Greg Carpenter’s visionary leadership. A generous grant from The Sorel Organization enabled us to capture the live performance for this CD, which Naxos released in August 2017.


Fanfare Magazine's James H. North named The Scarlet Letter one of the top 5 CDs of 2018 in its Nov./Dec. 2018 issue:

Lori Laitman writes brilliantly scored music; it’s been a while since I’ve heard such a colorful new American opera. It has many other virtues as well: eminently singable vocal lines in which the words are easily understood—unusual even in English, a credit to the composer and to librettist David Mason as well as to the singers—plus a convincing movement along a dramatic course.

Hester is a dramatic, lyric, coloratura soprano rolled into one; Laura Claycomb is a powerful vocal actress and soars through the high tessitura. Both men handle their more limited roles carefully, with superb diction but artificial, operatic accents. Dimmesdale finally has a strong aria as he confesses and dies; tenor Dominic Armstrong rises to the occasion. © 2018 Fanfare

In January, 2018, Opera News named The Scarlet Letter a "Critic's Choice"As Hester, Laura Claycomb is the work’s shining center. Her soprano is supple and womanly, but its agility, especially in the upper reaches, projects an innocent purity that reaffirms Hester’s moral north star. Laitman writes riskily for her heroine, with important text couched in high-flying lines. It’s difficult to know if other, less nimble sopranos would be as intelligible, but Claycomb is always clear, affecting and sympathetic. Even before the madness of Dimmesdale’s self-dramatizing death, tenor Dominic Armstrong’s aggressive, overwrought delivery lends the tormented minister an unstable, almost villainous cast—not inappropriate, given the character’s moral ambiguity. Malcolm MacKenzie’s dignified baritone makes Chillingworth a ramrod-straight, implacable force, riven with self-loathing. Mezzo-soprano Margaret Gawrysiak is convincingly menacing as the unhinged local harpy, although her unwieldy vibrato makes both words and melody difficult to parse. As the town elders, tenor Kyle Knapp and baritone Daniel Belcher add a revealing layer of prurient interest as they badger Hester to name her lover. The choral singing is particularly strong, and the orchestra, led by Ari Pelto, is polished and precise. © 2018 Opera News 


In October 2017, Donald Rosenberg of Gramophone Magazine reviewed the CD, writing: "Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel The Scarlet Letter has inspired several operas, including rarely performed versions with music by Walter Damrosch, Fredric Kroll and Margaret Garwood. The most recent, Lori Laitman's rapturous adaptation set to elegant verses by David Mason, received its world premiere in May 2016 by Opera Colorado. The Naxos recording of the work is drawn from those initial performances, which — at least in purely sonic terms — appear to have done great honor to this deeply affecting creation.

The first thing that leaps into one's ears is the sheer beauty of the music. Laitman has devoted much of her career to the art song, and her ability to meld words with lyrical, often soaring lines is on abundant display in her opera. The score pinpoints the distinctive qualities of the characters. Hester Prynne, forced to wear the letter 'A' as a symbol of her adultery, sings in urgent, rhapsodic phrases, while her lover, the Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale, ranges from anxious reflections to dramatic outbursts, and Roger Chillingworth, Hester's estranged husband, strikes sinister notes on his vengeful path. The people of the Puritan community reveal their moral pretensions in passages of reverent rigidity.

The Opera Colorado production benefits from the presence of splendid principal singers and a fine chorus. Laura Claycomb uses her radiant soprano to poignant effect, especially when revealing the woman's strength in the vocal stratosphere. As Dimmesdale, tenor Dominic Armstrong is forceful and touching and baritone Malcolm MacKenzie brings grave intensity to Chillingworth. Mezzo-soprano Margaret Gawrysiak is a vibrant terror as the town witch, Mistress Hibbons.

Led by Ari Pelto, the Opera Colorado Orchestra play Laitman's score with the refinement and urgency needed to catapult this impressive and fervent opera."


In November 2017, John Campbell of Artsong Update reviewed the CD, writing: "The powerfully expressive music was enthralling, from its choral beginning to the shattering end. Lori Latiman's music is lyrically expressive, capturing the intricate psychology of three flawed people in an early American setting. The music is dense, complex and intense, using instrumental colors to illuminate penetrating psychological insights and vivid characters. Drawing on her wide experience of writing art songs, Ms. Laitman has crafted a rich opera of great depth. Out of her understanding of how to set the voice she has created a stunning opera for the 21st century."

Records International reviewed the CD in August 2017 —

Laitman is one of the most prolific and fluent song and opera composers of our time, with a gift for effortless melody and for getting to the emotional heart of her texts. In her opera on Hawthorne’s classic novel she is greatly assisted by David Mason’s supremely skilful rendering of the story into verse. Laitman’s lyrical, eloquent score, firmly tonal, belongs to the tradition of the great opera composers of the past, with vividly portrayed characters whose dramatic trajectory and development is reflected in music so finely descriptive as to render staging all but redundant. Dimmesdale’s progressive disintegration of spirit, Chillingworth’s duplicitous self-deception and above all Hester’s resolve and strength of character are presented as a psychological drama of devastating insight through the power of meticulously crafted dialogue and exquisite musical color and shading. This is not a work of introverted self-examination, though; the judgmental societal mores of the day provide a dramatic backdrop in powerful choral scenes and the interaction of secondary characters. © 2017 Records International.

 To purchase this CD, please click here.

After Life

In Sleep The World Is Yours was commissioned by Music of Remembrance, premiered in May 2014, and Naxos released the CD in February of 2016. This song cycle sets three poems by the talented young poet Selma Meerbaum-Eisinger, who died at age 18 in a Nazi labor camp. The CD also includes the premiere recording of the one-act opera After Life, with music by Tom Cipullo and a libretto by David Mason.

The song cycle is performed by soprano Megan Chenovick, oboist Benjamin Hausmann and pianist Mina Miller.

"Lori Laitman’s In Sleep The World Is Yours is a set of three songs to texts by Selma Meerbaum-Eisinger, who was born in Romania and met a tragic end in a Ukrainian labor camp when she was eighteen. Happily, her poetry survived. Laitman, who uses the unusual combination of soprano, oboe, and piano for this cycle, seems deeply connected to the words, which are clear and straightforward but brimming with emotion. Her melodic and lyrical music is enveloping but also imaginative and penetrating, especially in the concluding “Tragedy,” in which the poet realizes she will “fade like smoke and leave no trace.” Megan Cenovick matches Laitman’s empathy with her comforting, nuanced soprano. Benjamin Hausmann (oboe) and Mina Miller (piano) contribute with sensitivity. The poet’s voice in these three songs and the Girl in Cipullo’s After Life resonate movingly and meaningfully with each other.” (Joshua Rosenblum, Opera News, July 2016)

”Laitman chose three poems and set them for soprano, oboe and piano. The first, “Lullaby,” holds a bittersweet element in that it was dreams that held the only available escape for some in those days….Laitman’s writing reflects this unease within what is traditionally a form that provides a feeling of safety. The active beginning to “Yes,” the second poem to be set, reflects feelings of distance between loved ones; the music softens as the realization that it is memories that hold the key to closeness sinks in. The writing for oboe here seems particularly poignant, adding its own florid commentary. Finally, there comes “Tragedy.” The words are heartbreaking, and worth quoting in full: “This is the hardest: to give yourself away/and then to see that no-one needs you, to give all of yourself and realize/you’ll fade like smoke and leave no trace.” The singer initially can hardly get past the first word, “This”, and here, the piano and oboe parts are at their most fragmentary. It is telling that this poem has the least text of all three poems, but Laitman accords it the longest setting. Megan Chenovick, superb throughout, really allows her voice to soar in this final offering, while Benjamin Hausmann’s poignant pipings add an extra layer of regret for what might have been for this talented young poet whose voice was cruelly ended at far too early an age.” (Colin Clarke, Fanfare Magazine, July 2016)

”Lori Laitman’s 18-minute In Sleep The World is Yours is a simpler, more profoundly distilled response to the Holocaust in the form of a mother-and-child song-cycle set to elegiac lyrics by Selma Meerbaum-Eisinger, dead at 18 at a Nazi camp in Ukraine.” (Laurence Vittes, Gramophone Magazine, May 2016)

To purchase this CD, please click here.


Vedem was commissioned by Music of Remembrance, premiered in May 2010 and the CD was released by Naxos in May 2011. This Holocaust-themed oratorio tells the remarkable story of a group of teenaged boys incarcerated in Terezin and their clandestine magazine entitled Vedem (Czech for “In the Lead”). The CD also includes the premiere recording of Fathers.

The music is performed by The Northwest Boychoir, under the direction of Joseph Crnko, mezzo-soprano Angela Niederloh, tenor Ross Hauck, clarinetist Laura DeLuca, violinist Mikhail Shmidt, cellist Walter Gray and pianist Mina Miller.

Click here to see more information from Naxos, as well as audio and video excerpts:

"[This CD] is a most touching experience, and one that further confirms Laitman’s status as one of the most talented and intriguing of living composers." (Fanfare Magazine)

"Laitman's text setting is straightforward and artful, allowing phrases that evoke memories of a happier life to land with neither irony nor an obvious attempt at emotional manipulation. Her flexible instrumentation, for clarinet, violin, cello and piano, is by turns insistent, warm and oddly hopeful, with filigrees of solo violin in traditionally Hebraic intervals.... It is yet another fine example of Laitman's gracious vocal writing and particular sensitivity to the complicated emotions that any reflection on the Holocaust is bound to conjure." (Opera News)

"...an intensely beautiful sound space..." "...a powerful retelling..." (Artsong Update)

For a Look or a Touch

“The Seed of Dream,” Lori’s Holocaust-themed song cycle based on the poetry of Vilna Ghetto survivor Abraham Sutzkever, was commissioned by Music of Remembrance, and released in April, 2008 on the CD For a Look or a Touch (Amazon, iTunes). Baritone Erich Parce, cellist Amos Yang and pianist Mina Miller perform Lori’s work, which Dr. Sharon Mabry, in The Journal of Singing, declared “a masterpiece not to be missed!”

Also on the CD is Jake Heggie’s song cycle “For A Look or A Touch” and Gerard Schwarz’ In Memoriam, scored for solo cello and string quartet.

“Laitman has an uncommon ability to breathe new life into a text with her music without obscuring its original essence, and she demonstrates that sensitivity here to a remarkable degree….Baritone Erich Parce sings these songs with understanding and great care, and he has invaluable collaborators in MOR founder Mina Miller at the piano and Amos Yang on cello. These three musicians achieve remarkable magic here and these beautiful and important songs deserve nothing less.” (The Journal of Singing)


Music of Remembrance’s Brundibar (Amazon, iTunes) recording on Naxos was named as one of the top ten opera recordings of 2007 by Opera News. On the same CD is the premiere recording of Lori’s "I Never Saw Another Butterfly", as arranged for soprano with clarinet. Maureen McKay and clarinetist Laura DeLuca perform this work on this December 2006 release.

“[The six songs] are performed beautifully here by soprano Maureen McKay and clarinetist Laura DeLuca. The poems show that the children were well aware of their surrounding, and perhaps their fate; and the songs have a haunting quality that stays with the listener.” (American Record Guide)

Between The Bliss and Me — Songs to Poems of Emily Dickinson

Between the Bliss and Me. . . Songs to Poems of Emily Dickinson

“Faulkner has a gorgeous, plush voice…Lori Laitman's I gained it so is deftly structured.” (Opera News, 2013)

“We also have a single song extracted from a cycle Between the bliss and me by Lori Laitman, oddly enough the only female composer here, and one by Richard Pearson-Thomas; both are beautifully poised little settings…” (Music Web International, 2013)

Other Labels




Gedankenverloren was released on the Genuin label in March 2018, and includes soprano Katharina Konradi and clarinetist Andreas Lipp's recording of 3 of the 6 songs from Lori's I Never Saw Another Butterfly: The Butterfly; Yes, That's The Way Things Are and The Old House.

The CD was reviewed in the Nov/Dec 2018 issue of Fanfare Magazine: "Lori Laitman's songs are set to poems written by children held prisoner at the Teresienstadt concentration camp during World War II. The children were around 14 years old. These three are part of a cycle of six songs originally composed in 1996 for saxophone and voie, but later orchestrated for clarinet and voice...The opening clarinet is highly emotive. Our singer here is a perfect match for these elegant and simple songs. It also brings out just what a fine voice she has...Her English is excellent and clear. "Rotting in silence" is very powerfully sung."

To purchase the CD, please click here.



Notorious RBG in Song was released by Cedille Records in June 2018, and features soprano Patrice Michaels and pianist Kuang-Hao Huang performing musical tributes to Supreme Court Justine Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Composers include Patrice Michaels, Vivian Fung, Derrick Wang, Stacey Garrop and myself. Included is my setting of Emily Dickinson's Wider Than The Sky, which was sung at Justice Ginsburg's 80th birthday celebration, and which "perfectly embodies her intellectual breadth." 

"Laitman's Wider than the Sky," which was performed at RBG's 80th birthday celebration, sets a marvelous poem by Emily Dickinson. Both song and poem are gifts to savor for the long haul." Stereophile, June 24, 2018. To purchase the CD, please click here


This new CD, produced by Glen Roven, was released in May 2018, and features all contemporary compositions by Benjamin Boyle, Jake Heggie, Jennifer Higdon, Glen Roven and myself. These are performed by these extraordinary artists: baritones Tobias Greenhalgh, Steven LaBrie and Jarrett Ott, and pianists Michael Brofman, Adam Nielsen, Glen Roven and Danny Zelibor. 

My contribution is a new baritone version of my song cycle The Joy of Uncreating, written to poems by the late Joan Joffe Hall. Voix des Arts writes: "The interpretive symbiosis with which LaBrie and Nielsen ignite Boyle’s songs proves to be no less incendiary in their performance of Lori Laitman’s The Joy of Uncreating. Not unlike the textual integrity of her operatic setting of Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, the composer’s uses of Joan Joffe Hall’s words in the songs on this disc are strikingly perceptive, her music dissecting the heart of the words with a tonal scalpel that pares away artifice. LaBrie and Nielsen cut into the flesh of ‘Illumination’ with unhesitant strokes, piercing the song’s torso with a gleaming blade sharpened on the backs of the words. Here and in ‘The Joy of Uncreating,’ they navigate the music’s paths through the texts with magnetic expressive dexterity."


 The complete review can be found here. To purchase the CD, please click here


The Soul Fox

The Soul Fox, a cycle to poetry of David Mason, was commissioned by Reach Out Kansas, Inc. (ROKI) for soprano Julia Broxholm and pianist Russell Miller. Their premiere recording was released in March 2017 on Equilibrium Records. To purchase the CD, click here.

Portraits of Women

This new release by Soprani Compagni, features the premiere recording of Laitman’s Fresh Patterns for two soprano and piano, performed by Lisa Dawson, Tammie Huntington and Phoenix Park-Kim. To purchase this CD, click here.

Over The Fence: Songs of Elsa Resphigi, Lori Laitman and Modesta Bor

This new release on the Albany label features an intriguing mix of songs by women composers from various eras, brilliantly performed by soprano Tanya Kruse Ruck and pianist Elena Abend.

“ [This CD includes] a song cycle by Lori Laitman, one of the finest song composers before the public today…The first song, a setting of the famous words “Grow old along with me, the best is yet to be,” by Robert Browning, is vintage Laitman, with lush, warm lines that elevate this already beautiful poetry to even more powerful expressiveness. On the other hand, the saucy fun of “Over the Fence,” “They Might Not Need Me,” and “Wild Nights” is also vintage Laitman, thanks especially to her trademark mastery of playful rhythmic interplay and her fearless flair for flamboyant melodic gestures and climaxes.”(Journal of Singing)

Over the Fence: Songs of Elsa Respighi, Lori Laitman, and Modesta Bor

An Aids Quilt Songbook: Sing for Hope

An AIDS Quilt Songbook: Sing for Hope

“For star power alone, An AIDS Quilt Songbook: Sing for Hope merits a 10. But when you factor in the quality of the songs, and the fact that all profits go to amfAR, the organization now known as the Foundation for AIDS Research, you have a disc that deserves to be heard…There are two songs that feature more than one accompanist. Composer-pianist Lori Laitman joins Anthony McGill, principal clarinet of the New York Philharmonic, to accompany...Randall Scarlata in her beautiful setting of a poem by Emily Dickinson.” (Bay Area Reporter, 2015)

Opera America Songbook

To purchase this 3 CD set, please click here

Laitman’s Building A House, to a poem by Minnesota Poet Laureate Joyce Sutphen, is one of the 47 songs commissioned by Opera America for the opening of the National Opera Center in NYC in September of 2012. Gregory Berg of The Journal of Singing recently reviewed the CD set and wrote: "Space does not permit comment on all forty-seven songs, but several deserve at least a brief mention. Lori Laitman's contribution to the collection is an exquisite setting of a text by Joyce Sutphen titled "Building a House," which Jennifer Check sings divinely."

At 53:40 into this video, you can watch Jennifer and Lori performing the song on March 19, 2013 at The National Opera Center.

Holocaust 1944

Grammy-award winning baritone Dashon Burton and bassist Logan Coale have recorded a new CD of my Holocaust 1944 song cycle. This was released on the Acis Productions label, with Geoffrey Silver as producer. For more information, including video and audio clips, please click here.

“Numerous composers have attempted to render the Holocaust (or at least some aspect of it) in music, often without the ends justifying their means. The present work, though, does not fall victim to its ambition: indeed, having already composed one such song-cycle – I Never Saw Another Butterfly (recorded by Hila Plitmann on Signum) – Lori Laitman was well placed to delve further into the wealth of poetry from Holocaust victims and survivors. The outcome is Holocaust 1944, seven songs in which the sombre restraint of the bass-baritone register is ideally complemented by its accompaniment for double bass. In spite (or perhaps because) of these restrictions, the sequence unfolds seamlessly and inevitability – with not a little wry humour to offset the prevailing mood of numbed tragedy. Dominant in expressive weight are the third and seventh settings: ‘Both Your Mothers’ sets a text by Jerzy Ficowski concerning the survival of life after another’s ‘death’, while ‘Holocaust 1944’ sets stanzas by Anne Ranasinghe in which recollection can only bring with it a sense of waste and futility. Projecting this music with the required intensity, while avoiding affectation, cannot be easy but Dashon Burton admirably conveys its understated eloquence, and in Logan Coale has a bassist of a dexterity matched by his feeling for melodic line; the whole recorded in a warmly sympathetic ambience. It would have been easy to extend the disc with further examples by this prolific song composer, though such a piece ideally needs to be heard on its own terms.” (Gramophone Magazine, February, 2015)

The Earth and I

This is the debut CD of The Washington Master Chorale, conducted by Thomas Colohan. It features world premiere recordings of works by Lori Laitman and Donald McCullough, both commissioned by the group. Other composers represented are Samuel Barber, Stephen Chatman, Norman Dinerstein, Cecil Effinger, Ross Lee Finney and Morten Lauridsen. Albany Records is releasing this CD in December 2013.

“The actual title of the disc comes from the result of Alba- ny’s first commission, Lori Laitman’s 2011 The Earth and I, based on poems by Emily Dickinson. The first movement, “The Sun Went Down,” uses warm, inviting harmonies and is beautifully sculpted by the Washington Master Chorale. Laitman matches Dickinson’s poignant text with an instinctive feel for the poem’s mood and shape, yet with harmonic language that is perfectly consistent. The second movement, “The Sky is Low,” is more complex texturally in its various strands and interactions, while the final set- ting, “The Wind,” references back to the first. There is some ecstatic writing (and singing) in this final movement. The Washington Master Chorale under the direction of Thomas Colohan responds sensitively to the various techniques employed by Laitman. ” (Fanfare Magazine, May/June2014)

To purchase this CD, please click here.

In My Memory: American Songs and Song Cycles



Centaur Records has released a new CD featuring tenor Kerry Jennings and pianist Amanda Asplund Hopson. This CD includes the premiere recording of Lori's "On A Photograph" (John Wood, poet) as well as a new rendition of "The Apple Orchard" (Dana Gioia, poet). Other composers represented are Libby Larsen, Richard Pearson Thomas and Tom Cipullo.

“Lori Laitman’s two songs possess a narrative quality reminiscent of Sondheim. The first, The Apple Orchard, uses “spring’s ephemeral cathedral” as a metaphor for a love the fails to seize the moment and thus is lost forever. Laitman composes long, melismatic vocal lines here over a resonant accompaniment. Her second setting is of an incredibly touching poem by John Wood imagining a homosexual love between two men in an old photo, taken “back when my grandparents were children.” The music has an autumnal quality with a direct gentleness characterizing the lovers, eventually depicting the loss of nearly everything about them except the photo. Jennings sustains the song’s mood with skill and judgment. ” (Arkiv Music, 2014)

“ There are two songs by the prolific composer of art songs, Lori Laitman. The Apple Orchard with text by Dana Gioia is a reminiscence, recalling that moment long past, of being in love but never lovers on an April day with blossoms open and he hesitatingly unsure. The second song, On A Photograph…, on a poem by John Wood, is a superb example of her art song writing skill. The poet looks at a photograph of two men and imagines their life together as a couple. Mundane events and their deep understanding of each other are captured convincingly in the flexibility of tempi matching the conversational tone of the poem. Ms. Laitman wrote to Mr. Jennings “…The tempo changes in On a Photograph are so important and so difficult, but you and Amanda nailed them. I am delighted.” This is the debut recording of On a Photograph I Found of Two Young Factories Workers Standing beside a Piece of Heavy Machinery Inscribed on the Reverse “Sacred to the Memory of Friendship.” ” (Artsong Update, 2014)

Natalie Mann: Experience

Soprano Natalie Mann and pianist Jeffrey Panko perform songs by Lori Laitman and Richard Pearson Thomas. This CD includes a complete recording of Lori's "The Metropolitan Tower and Other Songs" as well as her "Sunflowers" cycle and the premiere recording of her new Dickinson cycle "In This Short Life." Released by Albany Records in November 2013. To listen to excerpts, please click here. To purchase this CD, please click here.

“A stunning new release…The Metropolitan Tower belongs on any list of the finest art songs of the last thirty years…Laitman calls [Sunflowers] “one of my most complex song cycles,” …Surely that complexity sprang from the intriguing, multi-hued, nature-inspired texts of Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Mary Oliver, and Laitman responds with an exceptionally wide palette of colors and textures… There is a staggering amount of beauty and profundity in these sublime miniatures [In This Short Life] …Laitman has an unfailing ability to grasp the central essence of each of these poems and to express that essence in musical terms that seem fully authentic and perfectly true to Dickinson’s unique voice and vision. Art song composition does not get much better than this, and Mann and Panko are inspired to some of their most sensitive music-making tin the entire release.”(The Journal of Singing)

"A superb exponent of contemporary American songs, soprano Natalie Mann has a voice that is simultaneously strong and tender, passionate and subtle. Her phrasing is sensitive to the texts and unfailingly musical...Much of the album is given over to songs by the prolific Lori Laitman, a composer who is squarely in the American-romantic art song tradition of Barber and Rorem, though her harmonies are riper...Her style is lyrical, and she writes piano accompaniment that is transparent and appealing...A final reason to celebrate this album is the exquisite pianism of Jeffrey Panko..." (American Record Guide)

Marlissa Hudson: Lust

Marlissa Hudson's newest CD contains artsongs and arias that focus on the theme of sensuality. This CD includes a new recording of Lori's setting of Emily Dickinson's "Wild Nights." To order, please visit: http://marlissahudson.ironsage.com/discography/lust-album/

In This Moment: Women And Their Songs

Mezzo-soprano Katherine Eberle and Pianist Ksenia Nosikova present songs by Judith Cloud, Juliana Hall, Lori Laitman and Libby Larsen. Released by Albany Records in August 2013. Reviews soon. To purchase this CD on Amazon, please click here.

Andrew Garland: American Portraits

To purchase this CD on Amazon, please click here.

"Baritone and pianist both capture the right tone for Laitman's musically allusive, thoughtfully calibrated yet crowd-pleasing treatment of Lux's drolly observed quotidian pictures." (Opera News)

"Completing the collection is Lori Laitman’s entertaining Men with Small Heads, which springs upon the listener one delightful surprise after another. The earnest conversational tone of the first song and its sense of fun is a breath of fresh air, as is the mock melodrama and swirling contrasts of “Refrigerator 1957.” The third song, “A Small Tin Parrot Pin,” is one of those songs that constantly shifts, albeit it in subtle fashion, and to deliver it with such precise ensemble and clarity is incredibly impressive. Anyone who fears snakes may be tempted to avoid the fourth and final song, but to do so would be to miss out on one of the most intriguing songs on the disk. Make sure you listen to the last moment, to experience the snake’s frightening strike. Laitman seems incapable of composing anything but captivating art songs, and her utterly unique voice is a vivid presence here." (Journal of Singing)


Mezzo-soprano Wanda Brister and bassoonist Scott Pool have recorded Lori's "I Never Saw Another Butterfly" on this September 2013 CD released by Mark Records. To order, please click here.

The Ancient Question: A Voyage Through Jewish Songs

(Amazon, iTunes) Released in December 2011, this new CD features a new recording of Lori’s “I Never Saw Another Butterfly” with soprano Hila Plitmann and clarinetist Julian Bliss.

'The strongest musical offering is Lori Laitman's 1996 song cycle I Never Saw Another Butterfly, in which elegant, spare writing for voice and clarinet captures the poetic voices of children imprisoned in the concentration camp at Terezín. Clarinetist Julian Bliss partners Plitmann sensitively, especially in the intertwining duetting phrases of "Birdsong" and the melancholy drones of "The Old House." Plitmann turns quickly from the cheerful, ironic "Yes, That's the Way Things Are" to the harsh taunts of "Man Proposes, God Disposes."' (Opera News)

"Arguably the most memorable and moving music comes in the final song of Lori Laitman's cycle "I Never Saw Another Butterfly", in which clarinettist Julian Bliss proves a sensitive partner to the charismatic Plitmann." (BBC Music Magazine)

Wild Songs

Soprano Polly Butler Cornelius includes Lori's Four Emily Dickinson Songs on her Wild Songs recording (purchase).

“For people who think back nostalgically to Schubert and his musical circle and marvel at the small, private pleasures they enjoyed, here is evidence that such musical society and magic exist today, and that living composers such as Steve Heitzeg and Lori Laitman write music that is similarly attentive to the intimate, hidden beauties implicit in composing music for friends, as opposed to eternity…Laitman’s exquisite Four Dickinson Songs celebrates her own father’s 80th birthday…” (Gramophone Magazine)

Emerging Voices

Emerging Voices (purchase) features a new recording of Lori's "I Never Saw Another Butterfly" with soprano Elisabeth Halliday and saxophonist Zach Herchen.

Unsleeping: Songs by Living Composers

Unsleeping: Songs by Living Composers (Amazon), Patricia Green’s new CD, pays tribute to living composers from England, Canada, Hungary, Germany, Puerto Rico and the United States. The CD contains the premiere recording of the mezzo-soprano version of Lori’s Mystery and was released January 2009 on the Blue Griffin label.

“The teaming of composer Lori Laitman and poet Sara Teasdale in Mystery results in five songs of generous lyricism and propulsive ardor.” (Gramophone Magazine)

(In)habitation: Musical Settings Of Margaret Atwood

(In)habitation: Musical Settings Of Margaret Atwood (Amazon, Arkiv Music), performed by soprano Eileen Strempel and pianist Sylvie Beaudette, focuses on settings of Margaret Atwood poems by American women composers. It includes the premiere recording of Lori's Orange Afternoon Lover cycle.

"Lori Laitman's trilogy Orange Afternoon Lover is a delight from start to finish, although there is palpable pain in the first song, "Against Still Life."...The original poem is searing enough, but Laitman's music puts flesh on the bone in remarkable fashion. In stark contrast, "I Was Reading A Scientific Article" features the amorous outpouring of someone who is clearly more comfortable in the realm of scientific jargon, with what sounds like the bubbling of test tubes in the intricate accompaniment. The third poem, "I Am Sitting On The Edge," explores emotional fragility with discerning sensitivity, and Laitman's simple choice of repeating the poem's opening line at the end is a surprisingly strong statement in itself. It is not every composer who knows how to use a simple gesture to powerful effect, but Laitman is such a master composer." (The Journal of Singing)

"Lori Laitman chooses first-person narrative texts for the three songs of Orange Afternoon Lover. They are also among the longest and most complex of the Margaret Atwood poems that appear on this compilation. It is no surprise that the image of "crack your skull like a walnut, split it like a pumpkin" from Atwood's Against Still Life is rendered by Laitman in such a way that it retains incongruous shock value while avoiding derailment of the narrative. Likewise, her setting of the dubiously titled "I Was Reading a Scientific Article" is as buoyantly lyrical and whimsical as any of her many fine Dickinson songs. Although this self-described "accidental song composer" has been compared to Ned Rorem, Orange Afternoon Lover suggests she has much more in common with Samuel Barber by virtue of the sumptuous vocal lines and uncanny ability to craft Atwood's free verse prose so well that it sings like poetry." (Journal of the Society for American Music)

Songs of Life

Songs of Life (Amazon) includes the 3 songs from Lori’s “I Never Saw Another Butterfly” with soprano Eileen Mager and bassoonist John Friedeman. Released in 2008.

Songs in Transit: An American Expedition

Soprano Melanie Mitrano’s CD, Songs in Transit: An American Expedition (Capstone Records, Amazon, iTunes) includes the premiere recording of "Money" and a new recording of "The Hour,” with Lori at the piano. Released 2006 by Capstone Records.

Lori Laitman's setting of Dana Gioia's “Money” is one of her best. (New Music Connoisseur)

So Much Beauty

The Shining Place

Soprano Janeanne Houston has recorded 2 CDs with Lori’s songs: So Much Beauty (Amazon), which includes Lori’s “Two Dickinson Songs” (released in 2004); and The Shining Place (Amazon), which features 2 previously unreleased songs from The Metropolitan Tower cycle (released in 2006).

“Even more effective are the two songs by Lori Laitman, who sets two Sara Teasdale texts with the discerning sensitivity that we have come to expect from her. She has a truly exceptional gift for conveying the profoundest meaning of her texts, yet also taking care that the texts be perfectly understood.” (The Journal of Singing, in a review of The Shining Place)

Emily Dickinson in Song

Mezzo-soprano Virginia Dupuy includes two Laitman settings "If I..." and "They might not need me," on her CD Emily Dickinson in Song (Amazon). This CD was released June of 2004 on the Gasparo label.

She Says

Soprano Sonya Baker’s CD She Says, from 2004, features art songs of American women composers, and includes five of the six songs from Lori’s Days and Nights.

American Song Recital

American Song Recital (Amazon), released in 1993, was the first recording to include Lori’s works. With soprano Lauren Wagner and pianist Frederick Weldy, on the Channel Classics label.

“Lori Laitman was specifically asked by Lauren Wagner to compose a song. She chose a text by Sara Teasdale and the CD is worth owning for this song alone: magnificent!” (Phonogram Magazine, 1994)

Instrumental Music


This May 2016 release on Blue Griffin recordings features saxophonist Lau and pianist Kristin Ditlow in the premiere recording of Lori’s Journey.

To purchase this CD, please click here.

The Lyric Clarinet

Gerry Errante's CD, released on Ravello Records in February 2014, includes an arrangement, for clarinet and piano, of my song "The Apple Orchard”. To purchase this CD, please click here.

American Journey

Pianist Roger McVey’s CD, American Journey (cdbaby), was released in 2009, and features the premiere recording of Lori’s Nocturne, for solo piano.

If you have recorded Lori’s music and your CD is not appearing on this page, please contact Lori.