Luke Williams, bass-baritone, has been described in performance as “masterfully communicative,” “powerful,” and “menacing and moving.” A versatile singing actor comfortable in both operatic and musical theater repertoire, Dr. Williams has recently performed with Skylark Opera as Hannah (before) in As One, the Colorado Symphony in productions of Meredith Wilson’s The Music Man and Puccini’s Tosca, Opera Delaware in Rossini’s Il barbiere di Sivilgia, and the Utah Festival Opera in Les Miserables, Sigmund Romberg’s The Student Prince, Verdi’s Otello, and Gounod’s Faust. Other onstage highlights include his performances as the Sergeant of Police in Pirates of Penzance, Don Alfonzo in Cosi fan tutte, Marco in A View from the Bridge, Superintendent Budd in Albert Herring, and Theodorus VanGogh in the world premiere of Vincent by Bernard Rands. In oratorio performance Dr. Williams has been a featured soloist with the Middle America Freedom Band, Delaware Symphony Orchestra, Boulder Chamber Orchestra, and the Delaware Valley Chorale.
Dr. Williams comes to St. Olaf after two years of teaching at the University of Central Missouri, where he served as the music department’s artist in residence, the director of the opera program and an instructor of voice. While earning his D.M.A. degree at the University of Colorado in Boulder Dr. Williams’ research projects included tracing liturgical dramas from their earliest sources to the Fleury Playbook, analyzing the shifts in the texts from religious rite to drama, in addition to writing a handbook for teachers of vocal methods courses, and a performance/research project highlighting the similarities of circumstance in the lives of the poet and composer of Shostakovich’s Suite on Verses of Michelangelo Buonarroti Op. 145 that fueled their respective compositions. Recently Dr. Williams presented at the 2018 Missouri Music Educators Conference on the topic of training the adolescent female voice.