BY SENATORS Pascoe, Blickensderfer, Feeley, Linkhart, Matsunaka, Perlmutter, Reeves, Rupert, Thiebaut, Wham, Anderson, Andrews, Arnold, Chlouber, Congrove, Dennis, Dyer, Epps, Evans, Hernandez, Hillman, Lacy, Lamborn, Martinez, Musgrave, Nichol, Owen, Phillips, Powers, Sullivant, Tanner, Tebedo, Teck, Wattenberg, and Weddig;

also REPRESENTATIVES Gotlieb, Alexander, Allen, Bacon, Berry, Chavez, Clapp, Clarke, Coleman, Dean, Decker, Fairbank, Gagliardi, George, Gordon, Grossman, Hagedorn, Hefley, Hoppe, Johnson, Kaufman, Keller, Kester, King, Larson, Lawrence, Lee, Leyba, Mace, May, McElhany, McKay, McPherson, Miller, Mitchell, Morrison, Nunez, Paschall, Pfiffner, Plant, Ragsdale, Saliman, Scott, Sinclair, Smith, Spence, Spradley, Stengel, Swenson, Takis, Tapia, Tate, Taylor, Tochtrop, Tool, Tupa, Veiga, Vigil, Webster, S. Williams, T. Williams, Windels, Witwer, Young, and Zimmerman.


WHEREAS, Louise Sherman, world­renowned vocal coach, and her husband, Nathaniel Merrill, world­renowned opera stage director, were instrumental in bringing grand opera to Denver and cofounded Opera Colorado in 1981; and

WHEREAS, Opera Colorado presented its first grand opera in 1983 and now stages multiple performances of three grand operas each year; and

WHEREAS, Louise Sherman was born in Garden City, Kansas, in 1936, studied at the Julliard School of Music and the Eastman School of Music, and earned a graduate degree from the University of Southern California; and

WHEREAS, Nathaniel Merrill graduated from Dartmouth College with a major in musical theory and composition and a minor in mathematics, continued his education as a special student of Boris Goldovsky at the New England Conservatory of Music, and received a Master of Arts degree in musicology from Boston University; and

WHEREAS, Louise Sherman began her professional career as a music coach with the New York City Opera and as a pianist for George Balanchine, Nadia Boulanger, and Leonard Bernstein, and served with the Metropolitan Opera in New York City for more than twenty years as Assistant Conductor, in which capacity she was responsible for the musical preparation of the first Met production of Porgy and Bess; and

WHEREAS, During his twenty­eight years as Resident Stage Director at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, Nathaniel Merrill directed more than 1,500 performances of 48 different operas, including 27 new productions, more than any other Met director in this century; and

WHEREAS, Along with her extensive work in Colorado and elsewhere in the United States, Louise Sherman was known internationally for her work as assistant to Gian Carlo Menotti and Maestro Thomas Schippers at the Festival dei Due Mondi in Spoleto, Italy, for six seasons, and for her preparation of operas in Vienna, Strasbourg, Tel Aviv, and Buenos Aires; and

WHEREAS, Nathaniel Merrill is one of the most distinguished stage directors in the opera world, having directed more than two hundred twenty­five productions of over one hundred operatic works at opera houses in Europe, South America, Canada, and the United States; and

WHEREAS, Louise Sherman coached virtually all of the leading singers of her generation including Placido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, Beverly Sills, Joan Sutherland, Marilyn Horne, Birgit Nilsson, Teresa Stratas, Franco Corelli, and Cornell MacNeil and worked with leading conductors including Kurt Herbert Adler, Leonard Bernstein, Karl Bohm, Richard Bonynge, James Conlon, Herbert von Karajan, Erich Leinsdorf, James Levine, Zubin Mehta, and Emerson Buckley; and

WHEREAS, Nathaniel Merrill received an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the University of Colorado in 1985, received the Mayor's Award for Special Achievement for Excellence in the Arts in 1983 and again in 1989, and in 1989 was recognized by the Colorado General Assembly ". . . for consistently thrilling Colorado audiences with superb productions year after year"; and

WHEREAS, Louise Sherman and Nathaniel Merrill together received the 1990 Bonfils­Stanton Foundation's sixth annual award for "significant and unique contributions to the field of the Arts and Humanities" and the 1991 Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts; and

WHEREAS, Louise Sherman and Nathaniel Merrill's lifelong partnership and collaboration included the first operatic performance to be staged in the White House, a production of The Magic Flute for First Lady Jacqueline and President John F. Kennedy; and

WHEREAS, Louise Sherman and Nathaniel Merrill's introduction to opera in Colorado came when they worked with the Central City Opera Festival, including the founding of the Central City Apprentice Artist program; and

WHEREAS, In their work with Opera Colorado, Louise Sherman and Nathaniel Merrill contributed to the cultural and musical education of the children of Colorado through the Opera Colorado for Children program; and

WHEREAS, In their work with Opera Colorado, Louise Sherman and Nathaniel Merrill contributed to the ongoing development of musical talent in Colorado through their partnership as codirectors of the Joseph & Loretta Law Artist Center of Opera Colorado, a professional training program for young operatic artists which they founded in 1994; and

WHEREAS, The world of opera mourned the passing of Louise Sherman on February 11, 1998; now, therefore,

Be It Resolved by the Senate of the Sixty­second General Assembly of the State of Colorado, the House of Representatives concurring herein:

That the Colorado General Assembly, on behalf of the citizens of the state of Colorado, express their profound gratitude in memoriam to Louise Sherman and to Nathaniel Merrill for their lifelong work in the world of grand opera, through the love and commitment shown for their work in enriching the cultural life of Colorado, and for the gift of their legacy in Opera Colorado.

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Ray Powers Russell George



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Patricia K. Dicks Judith M. Rodrigue