Soprano Kathleen Bell has traveled extensively performing voice recitals of classical voice and musical theatre repertoire in Denmark, Germany, Austria, Australia and Italy. Her Stage performance credits include the La Contessa in Le Nozze di Figaro, Adele in Die Fledermaus, Miss Warbelwell in The Impressario and Mother Superior in The Sound of Music. Kathleen has been a featured soloist with the Miami Symphony, the Miami Civic Chorale, the Miami Oratorio Society, the Hispanic Lyric Theatre, the Middle Saxony Orchestra in Germany, the Amalfi Coast Music Festival in Maiori, Italy, and the Rome Festival Orchestra.
Kathleen has been teaching for over twenty-seven years privately and at the high school and college level. While maintaining a private studio, Kathleen is currently a voice instructor at the Shenandoah Conservatory Arts Academy, a visiting artist instructor in musical theatre at the Barbara Ingram School for the Arts, adjunct voice instructor at Mary Baldwin University and adjunct associate professor of voice at Shenandoah University.
Kathleen holds Bachelor and Master’s degrees in Voice Performance and is a Certified Teacher in levels I, II, & III of Somatic Voicework (tm) the LoVetri Method and a National Center for Voice and Speech Certified Vocologist. Kathleen is currently a doctoral candidate in Voice Pedagogy at Shenandoah University with specializations in vocal health and Contemporary Commercial Music Styles.
Kathleen’s research interests span from voice habilitation, collaboration with various body modalities to the effects of acid reflux on the voice. She has been a faculty and workshop presenter at Virginia NATS, the Pan American Vocology Association Conferences in Toronto and Seattle, Mary Baldwin University and at the International Symposium of the Voice Foundation in Philadelphia.
Her former students are currently singing in national musical tours, on Broadway and in A-level opera houses as well as teaching in secondary and collegiate settings.
Dr. Katie DeFiglio
Katherine DeFiglio, soprano, holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in Voice Pedagogy from Shenandoah Conservatory. Originally from Poughkeepsie, New York, she received her Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam, and her Master’s degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Miami.
Before moving to North Carolina, Dr. DeFiglio taught at the Barbara Ingram School for the Arts, Shenandoah Conservatory, PAVAN Governor’s School, and Dutchess Community College. She is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing and the Voice Foundation.
In addition to teaching, Dr. DeFiglio has enjoyed performing a wide variety of roles and repertoire throughout the United States and Europe, ranging from Mozart’s Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflӧte to Guenevere in Camelot. In operetta, she has performed five of Gilbert & Sullivan’s leading soprano roles, as well as Bernstein’s coloratura role of Cunegonde in Candide. Dr. DeFiglio has done extensive concert work, appearing as a soprano soloist in works such as Orff’s Carmina Burana, Handel’s Messiah and Mendelssohn’s Elijah. Her interest in acting technique for singers has led to research and study in the Michael Chekhov acting technique, and she has performed leading theatre roles such as Susy in Wait Until Dark and Hermia in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Dr. A. Steve Jennings
Dr. Jennings earned his Bachelors of Music Education 1980, his Master of Music Education in 1987, and his DMA in Music Education in 2004. He did post-graduate work in Special Education at George Mason University and taught special education in the Winchester/Frederick County area, in both private and public schools for ten years. In 1993, Dr. Jennings became choral director and special education teacher for students with learning disabilities and emotional handicaps at the newly opened Sherando High School, in Frederick County, Virginia where he continues to teach today. Steve was the director of the Shenandoah Valley Chapter of the Sweet Adeline International Inc., in Winchester, and Choral Director at Woodstock Christian Church in Woodstock, Virginia, was adjunct professor of music at Lord Fairfax Community College from 1997 through 2000 and was a member of the chamber choir Musica Viva of Winchester, Virginia from 2001 through 2003. He is currently Director of music at Market Street United Methodist Church in Winchester, Virginia and also the lead singer in the 50’s Jazz Band “Jump Alley.”
Steve has been sought after as a choral adjudicator, coach, and guest conductor throughout the east cost. In 2007 the Sherando High School Choral Department under the direction of Dr. Jennings toured Italy singing in Rome at St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican. In 1995, 1997, 1999, 2003, 2008 and 2011 Sherando’s Concert was selected to perform at the White House in Washington D.C. during the Christmas Holiday Season. In 1997 his concert choir performed with U.S. Navy Band on national television for the “Lighting of the National Christmas Tree” with President Clinton and the first family. In 1997 and again in 2000 the Sherando High School Concert Choir was selected from a national audition to be the feature choir at Carnegie Hall in New York City, and in 2009 they were asked by the National Park Service to perform at the 150 Celebration of John Brown’s Raid on Harper’s Ferry.
Also in 2007 Dr. Jennings was awarded the “Yale Distinguished Music Educator Award” at Yale University. Dr. Jennings is a member of the Virginia Music Educators Association and for the last four years has been one of the registrars for the VMEA conference in November. He is also a member of the Music Educators National Conference and the American Choral Director’s Association. Dr. Jennings is married to his college sweetheart and has two daughters, ages 22 and 13.
Amy Bowman, accompanist
Amy Bowman graduated from Shenandoah University with a degree in Piano Performance. She has accompanied several choirs including District Chorus, the Arts Academy Angel Chorale, Voices of Youth, PAVAN and various local school choirs. Amy currently maintains a private piano studio in her home, as well as at the Arts Academy in Winchester. She currently serves the music director and pianist for the New Stone Gathering service at First Presbyterian Church in Winchester. Amy received her Musikgarten certification in 2010 and currently teaches preschool music at First Presbyterian Weekday School. She and her husband, Todd, and their son, Kyle, live in Winchester, Virginia.