Leonard Ratzlaff. Bass-baritone, conductor, teacher, administrator, b Swalwell, Alta, 27 Jan 1949; B Church MUS (Mennonite Brethren Bible College) 1970, BA (University of Winnipeg) 1971, MA (University of Iowa) 1980, DMA (Iowa) 1985. Ratzlaff taught music at Winnipeg's Mennonite Brethren Collegiate 1972-8 and 1978-9 at the Mennonite Brethren Bible College (now Canadian Mennonite University). In 1981, he joined the music faculty of the University of Alberta, where he has been music director for the Richard Eaton Singers since 1981, and for the University of Alberta Madrigal Singers since 1982. Ratzlaff has also appeared frequently as a soloist, eg, at the Classical Music Seminar and Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria (1979-87); at the Robert Shaw Institute of Choral Music in Souillac, France (1990-4); and more recently with Voicescapes (Calgary).
In 1989, Ratzlaff co-founded, with Debra Cairns, the University of Alberta's graduate program in choral conducting. He was president of the Association of Canadian Choral Conductors 1994-6 and conducted the National Youth Choir of Canada in 2000. In 2003, he took over as chair of the University of Alberta's Music Department. His awards include induction into Edmonton's Cultural Hall of Fame (2001), the Queen's Jubilee Medal (2002), the Alberta Order of Excellence (2003) and the Order of Canada (2004).