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 SRU's Colleen Gray joins symphony orchestra as soloist 




April 9, 2009

Contact: K.E. Schwab  



SRU's Colleen Gray joins symphony orchestra as soloist


SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Colleen Gray, soprano and an associate professor of music at Slippery Rock University will be the guest soloist when then Slippery Rock University Symphony Orchestra performs Monday in Swope Music Hall.

            The 7:30 p.m. concert is under the direction of Warren Davidson, SRU music instructor.

            The concert will include works by Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky, Gustav Holst, Catalani, Mozart and Puccini.

            Gray teaches voice, language diction and vocal pedagogy and directs opera productions. She earned her Doctor of Musical Arts degree in vocal performance and literature from West Virginia University and her Master of Music in vocal performance from Duquesne University. After completing her masters, she continued her studies at the Accademia Vocale di Lucca, in Italy, and subsequently completed an apprenticeship with the Pittsburgh Opera Center. She also has a Bachelor of Science in Music Education degree with advanced standing in voice from West Chester State College.

            Gray will also perform the soprano solos in the Beethoven 9th Symphony with the Pittsburgh Civic Orchestra at 7:30 p.m. May 16 at the Upper St. Clair High School Theater. Davidson also conducts the Pittsburgh Civic Orchestra. The pair will also perform a recital of arias and art music by Croatian composers in June at the College Music Society International Conference in Zagreb, Croatia. They will be joined by Nanette Kaplan Solomon, professor of music at SRU.

            Gray's awards include being presented in recital by the Delaware Jewish Community Center after winning first place in the 1977 Jewish Community Center Emerging Artists Competition. She also won the West Chester State College Concerto Competition, was second in the Pottstown Philadelphia Orchestra Competition and was sponsored in recital after winning the Pittsburgh Concert Society Artist Competition. 

            Gray had her European debut performing the roles of Mimi in Puccini's "La Boheme" and Lucia in Donizetti's "Lucia di Lammermoor," both in Lucca, Italy. She has also performed with regional opera companies in the United States, including the Pittsburgh Opera. Her appearances with symphonies include performances of Verdi's "Requiem," Mozart's "Mass in C Minor," Debussy's "La Damoiselle �lue," Schubert's "Mass in G," Beethoven's "Mass in C minor" and Handel's "Messiah." A frequent performer for music conferences, she has presented lecture-recitals at the International Conferences of the College Music Society in Bangkok, Thailand; Alcal de Henares in Spain; Muelle, Costa Rica; Limerick, Ireland; and Kyoto, Japan. She also spoke at the National College Music Society Conferences in Quebec City, Quebec, and Miami, Fla., the Pennsylvania Music Teacher's Association Conference, and several times for the International Festival of Women Composers. 

            From 1993-2001, Gray served as president of the Tri-State Chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing and remains an active member of the governing board. 

            Her students have been frequent winners at the Tri-state and regional NATS student auditions.

            Tickets to the concert are $3 for the general public; free for SRU students.

Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.



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