BETHANY, W.Va. – The Bethany College Choir, under the direction of Professor David J. Rudari, will present a concert for the Lenten season at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 9, at St. Joseph Cathedral in Wheeling.
The featured work in this performance will be “The Seven Last Words,” by Theodore Dubois. Professor Rudari has engaged the services of three soloists: Joy Burdette, soprano, and Dr. Eric P. DeForest, tenor, of Northern Kentucky University; and Terry Naughton, baritone, of St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in Wheeling.
Burdette is an Adjunct Instructor of Voice at Northern Kentucky University in Highland Heights, Ky. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from Cumberland (Ky.) College, a Master of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Louisville School of Music and has done post-graduate work in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy at the University of Cincinnati-Conservatory of Music.
She has performed opera, oratorio and various concert works regionally and internationally. Her operatic roles include Leonore in “Il Trovatore,” Donna Anna in “Don Giovanni,” Vanessa in “Vanessa,” Magda in “The Consul” and Mother in “Hansel and Gretel.” Burdette has also appeared in oratorio and as a leading character with the Opera Theater of Lucca, Italy; the Cincinnati Opera; the Kentucky Opera; the University of Cincinnati-Conservatory of Music and the University of Louisville School of Music.
Dr. DeForest is Assistant Professor of Voice and Opera at Northern Kentucky University, where he teaches voice and vocal pedagogy. He has also directed Menotti’s “Amahl and the Night Visitors,” Milton Granger’s “Talk Opera” and Mozart’s “The Magic Flute.” He earned a Doctor of Musical Arts in Vocal Performance with an Opera Emphasis at the University of Texas in Austin and has performed in a number of operatic and musical theater roles nationally and internationally.
His operatic roles include Nemorino in “The Elixir of Love,” Monostatos in “The Magic Flute,” Basilio in “The Marriage of Figaro” and Judge Danforth in “The Crucible.” DeForest has also performed with the Austrian American Mozart Academy in Salzburg, Austria and has sung in Belle-Ile, France for the past three seasons with the Lyrique en Mer Opera Festival. His oratorio credits include Handel’s “Messiah,” Haydn’s “Creation” and Mozart’s “Mass in C Minor.”
Naughton, Assistant Vice President for Information Technology Services at WesBanco in Wheeling, is a well-known soloist and professional chorister in the Upper Ohio Valley. His credits include serving as baritone soloist and chorister for the Vance Memorial Presbyterian Church Choir, the Choir of St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church and Temple Shalom, all in Wheeling. He was a member of the Ohio Valley Chorale and is currently singing with the Quarter-Tones, a regional vocal quartet.
Dr. Michael P. Mihalyo, Jr., Provost and Dean of Faculty at Bethany College, will accompany the Bethany College Choir at the concert along with Luke Mayernik, newly-appointed organist at St. Joseph Cathedral. Mayernik will present an organ prelude with current Bethany student Casey Gray, Organ Scholar at St. Matthew’s Church, to present an organ postlude.
There is no admission charge for the program, which is open to the public. A freewill offering will be accepted.