Dr. Randi Von Ellefson has served as Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at Oklahoma City University and Artistic Director of Canterbury Voices since 2004. Under his direction, Canterbury has expanded its repertoire, increased the number of singers in the ensemble and presented four world premieres (works by Jerod Impichchaachaaha’ Tate, Stephen Paulus, Dominick Argento and David Janssen). At Oklahoma City University he directs the Chamber Choir and the University Men’s Chorus, two of the five choirs on campus, and teaches courses in the graduate choral curriculum.
He holds degrees from Texas Lutheran University, the University of Minnesota and Arizona State University. He is a founding member of the National Collegiate Choral Organization (NCCO). When he assumed the Presidency in 2016, he became the only person twice elected to that post.
He has taught choral music since 1977, beginning his career at Bethany Lutheran College (MN), Whitworth University (WA) and the University of Chicago (IL). Dr. Ellefson also was artistic director of the Elgin Choral Union (IL), the Spokane Symphony Chorale (WA) and was the first conductor of the Spokane Opera Company. While in Spokane, he also was conductor of major Holiday Concerts, Cathedral Concerts and other Pops with the Spokane Symphony Orchestra. He served St. Mark’s Lutheran Church as Director of Music and is currently choir director at Chapel Hill United Methodist Church in Oklahoma City.
Dr. Ellefson has been a guest conductor and professor at the Hochschule für Musik in Munich, Germany and taught at Payap University in Chiang Mai, Thailand. He has been president of the Northwestern and Central Divisions of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) and served in leadership roles in the Music Educators National Conference (MENC) and the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS).
Randi Von Ellefson has conducted many all-state choirs, had choirs perform at state, regional and national conventions of MENC and ACDA, served as an adjudicator at national choral competitions and lead choirs in national and international tours in Europe, Asia, Australia and Russia. Reviews (in Fanfare and Gramophone magazines) of choral performances and recordings have noted a particular ability of his choirs to “sing from the heart” and “express significant emotion and depth of feeling” while “maintaining superb intonation and technical precision.”
In the summer of 2014, Dr. Ellefson was part of a group of seventy from Canterbury and Chapel Hill United Methodist Church who traveled to Paris to perform the Fauré Requiem at the Church of the Madelaine where it was premiered. The group also joined many other choirs at Normandy Memorial on July 4th to sing and commemorate the 70th anniversary of the D-Day Invasion and Liberation of France by the Allied Forces.