Melanie Williams, soprano
Melanie Williams enjoys an active career performing art song, chamber, operatic, and choral repertoire throughout North America. The soprano holds the MM and DMA in Vocal Performance from Louisiana State University, where she studied with former Metropolitan Opera soprano Martina Arroyo and former New York City Opera tenor Robert Grayson. Noted for the purity and richness of her vocal tone, she has been a regional finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Auditions and a finalist in the Birmingham Opera and Mobile Opera competitions. Her opera credits include Papagena in Die Zauberflöte, Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Queen of the Night in The Magic Flute, Olympia in Le Contes d’Hoffman, Monica in The Medium, Lucy in The Telephone, Laetitia in The Old Maid and the Thief “The Girl” in the Jack Beeson opera Hello, Out There, Valerie in the American premiere of Amy Beach’s The Cabildo, and the title roles in Gustav Holst’s Savitri and the Gilbert and Sullivan operetta Iolanthe.
Williams has appeared as soprano soloist in multiple International Cathedral Music Festivals, performing major choral works in London, Canterbury and Salisbury, England. Her American concert solo performances as a soloist include engagements with the Mississippi, Arkansas, Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Monroe, Johnson City, and Kingsport Symphonies, as well as solo appearances with the Red Mountain Chamber Orchestra and several collegiate ensembles. She is a founding member of the LeBaron Trio, performing and recording traditional and contemporary art music, with emphasis on music by women composers. The trio has performed extensively throughout North America, including concerts in Vancouver, B.C. Los Angeles, CA, Flagstaff, AZ, Santa Fe, NM, Boston, MA, St. Louis, MO, Knoxville, TN, Columbia, South Carolina, and Pensacola and Seaside, FL. She is also a founding member of The Meàllo Trio, who seek to share and promote contemporary chamber music for voice, clarinet/saxophone, and guitar. A proponent of contemporary music and particularly music by women composers, Williams has sung premiere performances of numerous contemporary solo vocal works at new music festivals and in solo recitals alongside a broad traditional repertoire.
With almost 30 years of teaching experience, Dr. Williams has a passion for partnering with singers of all ages and developmental levels to explore their voices, to develop a “whole body” approach to singing, and to pursue their goals as musicians. Williams a member of the voice faculty at the University of Montevallo, where she teaches applied voice, vocal pedagogy, and diction courses. She is a former director of the opera ensemble and has also served as musical director for some of the musical theatre productions at the university. Williams has attended both the New CCM Vocal Pedagogy Institute (Shenandoah University) and the Once Body/One Voice Conference (Penn State University) multiple times and enjoys exploring non-classical pedagogy and cross-training of classical singers in addition to classical pedagogy and literature. Many of her students have gone on to prestigious graduate programs for classical study, as well as successful careers as classical, musical theatre, and CCM singers.