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TUSCALOOSA – During May 16-22, the UA Opera Theatre and School of Music hosted the Druid City Opera Workshop, which will culminate in a final performance of their work this Saturday. The Druid City Opera Workshop is a pre-professional opera training intensive, and this is the first season of this program. UA Assistant Professor of Voice and Director of the Opera Theater Paul Houghtaling is the artistic director of the workshop. Participants in the workshop include 12 young opera singers from across the U.S., who have come to Tuscaloosa to study and perform. The final performance of their one-week training residency is Saturday, May 22, 2010 at 7:30 p.m. in the Choral Opera Room of the Frank M. Moody Music building. The performance is FREE and open to the public. The program is approximately 90 minutes in length. For further information, please call 348-7111 or visit the Opera Theatre’s web page at


TUSCALOOSA, AL – The University of Alabama School of Music’s Voice area student recently competed in several events, with many of them garnering awards for their talent.

Jennifer Bryant, DMA student, was the winner of the 2010 Alabama NATS Artist Award (NATSAA) held February 22 at the University of South Alabama in Mobile.  As the Alabama winner, Ms. Bryant advanced to the regional NATSAA competition held at Stetson University in Florida where she was awarded first alternate. She is a student of Dr. Jennifer Cowgill.

Leslie Procter won second place and a $1000 award in the Birmingham Music Club Guild competition held at Birmingham-Southern College on March 26.  She is a student of Mr. Doff Procter.

Several students also participated in the NATS Statewide Auditions held at the University of South Alabama, February 23 and 24.

Robert Palmer won first place in the freshmen men division and second place in the freshmen men musical theater division; Amy Todhunter won first place in the junior women musical theater division; Hollie Tkacik won first place in the sophomore women musical theater division; Lawson Daves won third place in the freshmen men division.  These students are from the studio of Dr. Jennifer Cowgill.

Perry Harper and Jarrod Demming won first and second place respectively in the advanced men category. They are students of Mr. Paul Houghtaling.

Zacc Kimbrell, a student of Mr. Doff Procter, won first place in the junior men music theatre division.

January 7, 2010 – Student members of the UA Opera Theatre, Jennifer Bryant, Jeanette Fontaine, Amy Todhunter, Jordan Lawson, and Perry Harper performed at the finals of the National Opera Association Collegiate Opera Scenes Competition, Atlanta Georgia.

January 14, 2010 – Faculty Recital:  Dr. Susan Fleming, mezzo-soprano and Kevin Chance, piano; works of Poulenc, Wilson, Heggie, and Sondheim. 7:30 pm, Concert Hall.  

January 21, 2010 – University Singers: Featured choir at the American Music Educators Association Conference. John Ratledge, conductor.  8:30 pm, Concert Hall.

January 24, 2010 – Junior Recital: Jarrod Demming, bass-baritone; with Kevin Chance, piano and Julie Franklin, viola.  Works by Finzi, Schumann, Presser, Hahn, Puccini, and Strouse. 6:00 pm, Recital Hall.

January 26, 2010 – Faculty Recital:  Osiris Molina, clarinet and Dr. Jennifer Cowgill, soprano, and Kevin Chance, pianist. Works include “Ariel”  for soprano and clarinet by Ned Rorem with text by Sylvia Plath. 7:30 pm, Recital Hall.

January 29, 2010 – The University of Alabama Church Music Conference: “Lift Up Our Voices and Instruments in Song: A Progressive Concert featuring UA Music Faculty and University Singers;” Featured vocalists include: Dr. Stephen Cary, tenor; Dr. Jennifer Cowgill, soprano; Dr. Susan Fleming, mezzo-soprano; Prof. Paul Houghtaling, bass-baritone; and Professor Doff Procter, baritone.  Works by Handel, Haydn, Bach, Vaughan Williams, Langlais, and O’Hara. 7:30 pm, Recital Hall and Concert Hall.

January 31, 2010 – DMA Lecture: William Martin; “To vibrate or not to vibrate: Straight tone as an expressive device in musical theatre singing.” 8:00 pm, Recital Hall.

February 7, 2010 – Video presentation: The voice area presents a showing of the film The Audition produced by the Metropolitan Opera in 2007.  3:00 pm, Recital Hall.

February 18, 2010 – University Singers: Schubert’s Mass in G; with guest conductor, Professor Juong and featured student soloists.  7:30 pm, Concert Hall.

February 21, 2010 – Junior Recital: Amy Hill, soprano and Laura Ashley Missildine, mezzo-soprano. Works of Barber, Bellini, Ravel, Wolf, Bernstein and Mozart.  2:00 pm, Recital Hall.

March 5, 6, 7, 2010 – The University of Alabama Opera Theatre: The Gondoliers by Gilbert and Sullivan, Paul Houghtaling, Director. Ticket prices are as follows: Adults, $10; students: $5. Limited Seating.  Early arrival suggested. For tickets, call the School of Music Box Office at 205-348-7111. For further show information, call 205-348-3396.  Friday and Saturday at 7:30 pm, Sunday at 3:00 pm.  Choral Opera Room.

March 9, 2010 – Recital: University of Alabama Opera Theatre. “Terrific Tuesday” Concert Series at Shelton State Community College, Tuscaloosa. 1:15 pm, Alabama Power Recital Hall at Shelton State.

March 9, 2010 – Presentation: College of Education’s Research on Teaching in the Disciplines Forum Series; “Learning Mathematical Concepts Through Opera: An Instructional Strategy for Four and Five Year-Olds;” Professor Paul Houghtaling talks about his research with “Opera and Pre-K.”  Noon, College of Education Dean’s Conference Room, University of Alabama. 

March 9, 2010 – University of Alabama Contemporary Ensemble: A concert of works by Endowed Chair Composer-in-Residence Peter Westergaard, featuring Paul Houghtaling, bass-baritone, and Dawn Neely, soprano. 7:30 pm, Concert Hall.

March 11, 2010 – University of Alabama Endowed Chair series, video presentation of Peter Westergaard’s opera Alice in Wonderland preceded by a talk by the composer.  Time and location TBA. 

March 2010 – Professor Doff Procter, Instructor in Voice, will lead the Alabama Boychoir and the Alabama Girls Chorus of the Alabama Choir School in a concert tour of Italy, and will lead these ensembles in performances in Chicago in May. 

March 30, 2010 – Senior Recital: Megan Newman, soprano. 5:30 pm, Recital Hall.

April 15, 2010 – Senior Recital: Kimberly Cockrell and Casey Brasher, sopranos; Works by Bach, Mozart,  Wolf, R. Strauss, Hundley, and others.  7:30 pm, Recital Hall.

April 16, 2010 – Junior Recital: Zacchaeus Kimbrell, tenor and Leslie Procter, mezzo-soprano; Works by Bach, Scarlatti, Cavalli, Schumann, R. Strauss, Gounod, Auber, Duke, Bucchino, and others. 5:30 pm, Recital Hall.

April 17, 2010 – Graduate Recital: Sara Hughes Shipp, mezzo-soprano; Works by Vivaldi, Hahn, Schumann and Hundley. 12:00 p.m., Recital Hall.

April 17, 2010 – Senior Recital: Tara Cochran, soprano. Works by Debussy, R. Strauss, Rossini, Hundley and Copland. 5:30 pm, Recital Hall.

April 18, 2010 – Senior Recital: Jordan Lawson, tenor; Works by Bach, Mozart, Lortzing, Honegger, Finzi, and others. 2:00 pm, Recital Hall.

April 18, 2010 – Senior Recital: Brian Skoog, tenor; Works by Bach, Mozart, Le?har, Ravel, and others. 6:00 pm, Recital Hall.

April 19, 2010 – University Singers: Duruflé Requiem and Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb; John Ratledge, conductor and featured soloists.  7:30 pm, Concert Hall.

April 22, 2010 – University Chorus and Alabama Symphonic Band: Marvin Latimer and Randall Coleman, conductors. 7:30 pm, Concert Hall.

The School of Music, Voice Department and the UA Opera Theatre announce plans for the first annual DRUID CITY OPERA WORKSHOP.  This pre-professional opera training intensive for singers, pianists, and stage directors will take place on the campus of UA May 16-28, 2010.  Please see for more information.  Click on the DRUID CITY OPERA WORKSHOP link.

Kurt Weill's Street Scene

Kurt Weill's Street Scene


UA Opera TheatreThe UA Opera Theatre under the direction of assistant professor of music Paul Houghtaling, has been advanced as a semi-finalist in the National Opera Association’s 2009 Collegiate Opera Scenes Competition. Two scenes were submitted on video and both were selected. This marks the first national recognition of UA’s opera program.  Scenes from The Medium by Gian Carlo Menotti and Street Scene by Kurt Weill will be performed in competition at the National Opera Association National Convention in Atlanta in January.

Voice faculty members Stephen Cary, tenor, Paul Houghtaling, bass-baritione, and Jennifer Cowgill, soprano, will be joined by DMA candidates James Seay, tenor, and Christopher O’Rear, baritone, in a performance presentation at the CMS National Conference in Portland, Oregon on Thursday, October 22, 2009.  The presentation is entitled A Mountain of Funny Foam: The Abstract Expressionism of Virgil Thomson and will include Collecetd Poems for Baritone and Soprano on poetry by Kenneth Koch and Capital Capitals set to texts of Gertrude Stein. The presentatioin was conceived and directed by Paul Houghtaling.  Kevin Chance is the pianist.

On Friday night, October 16, 2009, Susan Fleming, mezzo-soprano, Jennifer Cowgill, soprano, and Paul Houghtaling, bass-baritone, will appear in recital at the Mississippi University for Women in Columbus, Mississippi.  The program will include Virgil Thomson’s Collected Poems for Baritone and Soprano, Heggie’s dramatic monologue At the Statue of Venus, and Hoiby’s tribute to Julia Child Bon Appetit!  Kevin Chance is the pianist.  For more information, call the music department office at “The W” at 662-329-7260.

September 8, 2009 – Faculty Recital:  Tuscaloosa, AL; Shelton State Community College “Terrific Tuesday” series; Tuesday, September 8 at 1:15 p.m.; Dr. Susan Fleming, mezzo-soprano, and Dr. Jennifer Cowgill, soprano; works of Heggie and Hoiby

September 22, 2009 – Doctoral Recital:  Tuscaloosa, AL; Recital Hall/Moody Music Building at the University of Alabama; Tuesday, September 22 at 5:30 p.m.; Jeanette Fontaine, mezzo-soprano with Kevin Chance, pianist; works of Larsen, Mahler, Debussy, Mozart, and Handel.

September 23, 2009 – Doctoral Recital: Tuscaloosa, AL; Recital Hall/Moody Music Building at the University of Alabama; Wednesday, September 23 at 5:30 p.m.; James Seay, tenor with Kevin Chance, pianist, and guest artist, Skip Snead; works of Weber, Mahler, Strauss, and Britten.

September 25, 2009 – Faculty Voice Recital:  Birmingham, AL; Cathedral Church of the Advent Mid-Day Music Series; Friday, September 25 at Noon; Paul Houghtaling, bass-baritone with Kevin Chance, pianist; works of Bach, Duparc and Gilbert & Sullivan.

September 29, 2009 – Faculty/Guest Recital: Tuscaloosa, AL; Alabama Power Concert Hall/Shelton State Community College; Tuesday September 29 at 1:15 p.m.; Stephen Cary, tenor with Kevin Chance, pianist

October 4, 2009 – Faculty Recital: Tuscaloosa, AL; Recital Hall/Moody Music Building at the University of Alabama; Stephen Cary, tenor; Sunday, October 4 at 2:00 p.m.

October 9, 2009 – Recital: Mobile, AL; The Mobile Music Teachers Association presents Paul Houghtaling, bass-baritone, and Kevin T. Chance, piano, in recital at the University of Mobile, Martin Hall, 7:30 p.m

October 13, 2009 – Doctoral Recital: Tuscaloosa, AL; Recital Hall at the University of Alabama; Tuesday, October 13 at 5:30 p.m.; Jennifer Bryant, soprano with Kevin Chance, pianist; works by Larsen, Poulenc, Zemlinsky, Rameau, and Donizetti.

October 16, 2009 – Recital: Columbus, MS; The Mississippi University for Women; Friday, October 16 at 7:30 p.m.; Dr. Susan Fleming, mezzo-soprano, Dr. Jennifer Cowgill, soprano, and Paul Houghtaling, bass-baritone, with Kevin Chance, pianist; works of Thomson, Heggie and Hoiby.

October 22, 2009 Faculty/Doctoral Concert: College Music Society National Conference, Portland OR; “A Mountain of Funny Foam”: The Abstract Expressionism of Virgil Thomson.  UA Faculty Paul Houghtaling, bass-baritone and lead pressenter, Stephen Cary,  tenor, and Jennifer Cowgill, soprano; UA doctoral candidates Christopher O’Rear, baritone, and James Seay, tenor. 

October 30, 2009 – Opera: The University of Alabama Opera Theatre: “Masque: Music that Haunts;” Choral/Opera Room at the University of Alabama; Friday, October 30 at 7:30 p.m.; scenes and arias by Strauss, Mozart, Bizet, Sondheim, Dvorak, Verdi, Andrew Lloyd Weber, Donizetti, and Schwartz.

November 1, 2009 – Opera: The University of Alabama Opera Theatre: “Masque: Music that Haunts;” Choral/Opera Room at the University of Alabama; Sunday November 1 at 3:00 p.m.; scenes and arias by Strauss, Mozart, Bizet, Sondheim, Dvorak, Verdi, Andrew Lloyd Weber, Donizetti, and Schwartz.

November 14, 2009 – Doctoral Recital:  Tuscaloosa, AL; Recital Hall/Moody Music Building at the University of Alabama; November 14 at 6:00 p.m.; Dawn Neely, soprano; Saturday; works by Melani, Wolf, Poulenc, Larsen, and Moore.

November 12, 2009 – University Singers: Tuscaloosa, AL; Concert Hall/Moody Music Building at the University of Alabama; Tuesday, November 12 at 7:30 p.m.; John Ratledge, conductor.

November 19, 2009 – University Chorus: Tuscaloosa, AL; Concert Hall at the University of Alabama; .; Marvin Latimer, Conductor, Rutter’s Mass of the Children; soloist, Paul Houghtaling, bass-baritone, and Dr. Jennifer Cowgill, soprano.

November 22, 2009 – Senior Recital:  Tuscaloosa, AL; Recital Hall/Moody Music Building at the University of Alabama; Sunday, November 22 at 2:00 p.m.; Katherine Gates, soprano.

November 22, 2009 – Graduate Recital:  Tuscaloosa, Alabama; Recital Hall/Moody Music Building at the University of Alabama; Sunday, November 22 at 4:00 p.m.; Andrew Head, baritone (MM candidate); works by Bach, Barber, Respighi, Duparc, and Sondheim.

November 24, 2009 – Contemporary Ensemble:  Doctoral student Dawn Neely, soprano; faculty artists Paul Houghtaling, bass; UA Contemporary Ensemble, conducted by Marvin Johnson; works of Crumb and Westergaard; Concert Hall/Moody Music Building; 7:30 p.m.

Jennifer CowgillDr. Jennifer Cowgill, soprano and Assistant Professor of Voice, presented a paper entitled “Comparing the Vocal Dose of University Students from Vocal Performance, Music Education and Musical Theater” at the International Voice Foundation Annual Symposium in Philadelphia, PA in June of 2009 in collaboration with Dr. Christopher Gaskill of the College of Arts and Sciences and Department of Communicative Disorders.

Stephen CaryTenor Stephen Cary, UA Professor of Voice, released a CD in the spring of 2009 on the MSR Classics label.  The new recording of Dichterliebe and An die ferne Geliebte with pianist Dennis Helmrich has been warmly received and is available through Amazon .com and other outlets.