Ryan Heller is the Master 700 Director of The Pride of Portland Chorus of Sweet Adelines Int.
A "barbershop brat," he joined the Barbershop Harmony Society as a high school freshman, singing with then Evergreen District champs, Vocal Gentry. Under Ryan's leadership, Pride of Portland has won regional championships each cycle of competitions, made six appearances on the international stage with five top ten finishes, received the Audience Choice Award at the 2010 international convention in Seattle, WA, and most recently a 4th place finish in the fall of 2014 at international competition in Baltimore, MD. In April of 2013, Ryan received his Master Director 700 award when POP took first place at the regional contest, with a record-breaking score of 701 points.
A rarely known fact about Ryan is that, while an undergrad, he received a scholarship from Sweet Adelines' Young Singers Foundation and received a Young Artist Award from the National Recording Academy. In demand throughout the country as a conductor, singer and coach, Ryan encourages, cajoles and educates each performer toward becoming the best they can be. A demanding yet loving leader, Ryan never fails to bring out the optimal performance in each musician with whom he works.
Along with the tremendous distinction of being Pride's Master Director 700, Ryan is the Artistic Director/ Conductor of the following: Chorus Austin (Austin, TX) and Portland Vocal Consort (Portland, OR). Other recent positions include: Music Director/Conductor of the Southwest Washington Symphony (2003-2013) and Co-founder/Conductor of the Columbia Chorale of Oregon (2001-2009). His Master of Music and Bachelor of Music degrees are in conducting and vocal studies from Chapman University (Orange, CA) and Portland State University (Portland, OR). He is also sought after as a chorus and quartet coach, conference speaker and guest director.