Q. When did you begin working at ENMU?
August 5th, 2016
Q. What are the main duties of your job?
My main duties include teaching private voice lessons to vocal performance, music education and bachelor of science in music majors as well as music minors. I also am involved in vocal coaching, including for the upcoming production of Pirates of Penzance, and teaching the Stagecraft for Singers class.
Q. What have you enjoyed most about your job, and what have been the biggest challenges?
I love being able to interact with my wonderful colleagues in the music department. We have a talented group of faculty and staff who support each other and the department. I enjoy my students and watching them learn not only about music but about themselves. Especially as singers, you have to balance housing your instrument within your own body and dealing with the challenges of life while maintaining your instrument. I love being able to prepare students academically and professionally, no matter what they end up doing with their degree.
Q. What were you doing before you came to ENMU, and what other jobs have you held outside of ENMU?
Before coming to ENMU, I was finishing my doctorate at LSU and teaching there as a graduate teaching assistant. I also performed in numerous operas, recitals, and choral groups while there. I have spent the last nine years in higher education and earning my three degrees while maintaining a performing career. I have performed in concert venues and opera houses across the nation and abroad, including, Chicago, San Francisco, New York, and Florence, Italy. This summer my wife and I both finished our respective music degrees, participated in my sister's wedding, and got married at the end of summer ourselves.
Q. What are your degrees and majors, and what activities did you participate in college?
Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Cedarville University; Master of Music in Vocal Performance from Louisiana State University; Doctor of Musical Arts in Vocal Performance with a minor in Vocal Pedagogy from Louisiana State University
Q. Where were you born, raised, and what was your life like growing up?
I was born in Syracuse, New York, but was raised in Dayton, Ohio. I was always heavily interested and involved with music. I began piano lessons around 2nd or 3rd grade and continued until I graduated from high school. I began taking voice lessons in 7th grade and knew I wanted to go to school for music and become an opera singer. My dad is an industrial designer and is the Vice President of Design for Crown Forklift Trucks. My mom is a secretary at a local law firm. My sister works for the government and currently lives outside of Chicago.
Q. Tell us about your own family?
I was married to my beautiful wife one month ago, six days before starting at ENMU. She is also an opera singer and teaching voice lessons privately here in Portales.
Q. What are your hobbies?
I love to sing opera. I am often an introvert, but completely unleash when I am on stage performing. I love telling such dramatic stories in song form. I enjoy teaching music. I love to play piano. When I am angry or sad or just need to unwind, I go straight to the piano and release all of my emotions. I also love to dabble in composition. (When I proposed to my wife, I performed a song I had written for her.) I love reading fiction because of the creativity and escapism. It always helps inform my characters for performances. I enjoying watching movies and am extremely competitive and love to play board and card games.
Q. What is your ultimate career goal?
I would love to be able to maintain my opera performing career while also being a university professor.
Q. What gives your life meaning? Besides career goals, what else do you hope to accomplish?
My faith, my family, and my music give my life meaning. I love to use music to help and inspire others. Music and the arts are so important and should never be undervalued. Music provides an outlet for people and teaches skills that are important for every field. It is not just entertainment, but work ethic, professionalism, therapy, communication, and so much more. Dedicating my life to helping others achieve a skill in such a field is extremely fulfilling.
Q. What is your general impression of Portales, and ENMU?
Portales reminds me of the small rural town I grew up in in the Midwest. It has been nice to avoid some of the hustle and bustle of big city life.
Q. Other thoughts?
I am so grateful to be here at ENMU and utilize my talents to help students to achieve their degrees and accomplish their dreams. I hope to meet some of the readers at one my performances in the future!