Houston–based Tenor Benjamin S. Williams has performed across the U.S. and Europe in diverse venues ranging from Trebah Gardens in the United Kingdom to concert halls in Florence, Italy. He currently sings with First Presbyterian Church in Houston where he has performed solos from Mozart’s Requiem, Dan Forrest’s Requiem for the Living and many others. He was a finalist in the Christopher Newport University School of Music Concerto and Aria competition in 2012, and has participated in numerous music festivals both abroad and in the United States. These include the Bay View Music Festival, the New York Opera Studio with Nico Castle, the Cornish American Song Institute, and the Institute of Bel Canto Singing. Additionally, he has performed in masters calluses with George Shirley, Nico Castel, Dimitri Pittas, and Stanford Olsen, among others.
Committed to sharing music with his community, Mr. Williams often performs for churches, and retirement communities. He has give interactive lectures to High School and Elementary students about opera and classical singing.
Mr. Williams is a 2012 inductee of the Pi Kappa Lambda Honor Society and has received numerous merit based scholarships as both a graduate and undergraduate student.
Mr. Williams holds a Master of Music in Vocal Performance and Vocal Pedagogy from the Moore’s School of Music at the University of Houston, where he studied with Dr. Timothy Jones. He studied abroad in Florence Italy where he attended L’Academia Europa and studied with Italian soprano Susannah Rigacci. He graduated Cum Laude from Christopher Newport University with a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance where he studied with Dr. David Sadlier.
I am a retired high school and college choir director and music professor with 35 years of teaching experience. Degrees include: Bachelor of Music Education from Baylor University, Master of Music in Conducting from Sam Houston State University, and extensive post-graduate work at the University of Houston. I now working as free-lance accompanist for choirs and soloists, voice teacher, piano teacher, Director of Music Ministries at St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church, and Director of the Houston Lutheran Chorale.
I will be at Tompkins on Mondays and Tuesdays. If we should need to make-up a lesson, I can do that on Fridays, or we can meet at my house over the weekend. If you have to miss a lesson, please notify me within twenty-four hours of your lesson.
I am looking forward to working with you this year,
Juan Garza is Adjunct Voice Faculty at Lonestar College-Kingwood where he teaches applied voice, sight singing, music literature and lyric diction. Apart from his collegiate appointment, Mr. Garza maintains a thriving private voice studio and is the Maennerchordirigent for the Houston Saengerbund. Select opera credits include Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro), Gianni Schicchi (Gianni Schicchi), Belcore (L'elisir d'amore), Mr. Ford (The Merry Wives of Windsor), Kezal (The Bartered Bride), M. Choufleuri (M. Choufleuri restera chez lui le...), Blansac (La scala di seta), Vater (Hänsel and Gretel), John Styx (Orpheus in the Underworld), Pimpinone (Pimpinone), Gustave (Dinner at Eight), and Marcello (La bohème). A frequent performer of new operas, Mr. Garza has had the pleasure of creating the roles of Ricordi (Happy Endings) with Lone Star Lyric and Lt. Sprane (The Measure of Love), Dottore (Communicable) with Operativo Houston. Equally as comfortable in music theater and Gilbert and Sullivan operetta, he has sung Joe (The Most Happy Fella), The Baker (Into the Woods) to name a few and Dick Deadeye (HMS Pinafore), Tom Brown (The Zoo), Sir Roderic Murgatroyd (Ruddigore), and Don Alhambra (Gondoliers). Oratorio credits include soloist in Mozart’s Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Faure’s Requiem, Rutter's Mass of the Children and Dubois’s Seven Last Words of Christ. His students are consistently awarded Superior Ratings at UIL State Solo and Ensemble, earn a place in the Texas All-State Choir, receive Tommy Tune Awards, and have gained entrance into prestigious music schools around the country.