Current Artistic Director
Artistic Director, Dawn Upshaw, takes a personal interest in the growth of each student, developing individual relationships to help students realize their full potential. Her inspirational presence in weekly coachings and classes sets the tone for exploration and discovery.
Incoming Artistic Director
Bard Conservatory is very excited to welcome renowned mezzo-soprano, Stephanie Blythe, as the new Artistic Director of the Vocal Arts Program, beginning in the fall of 2019. About her appointment she says, "I have dreamed of joining the academic world for some time, but assuredly, becoming part of the VAP at Bard is beyond my wildest dreams. I look forward to continuing the legacy created by Dawn Upshaw—to upholding the musical and educational values of the VAP, while looking ahead to the future development of this marvelous and singular program."
Guest ArtistsThe Vocal Arts Program has an exceptional group of master voice teachers, coaches, and instructors. In addition to the impressive resident faculty, a myriad of guest artists drawn from the professional music world supplement the curriculum.
- Claire Chase, founder, former artistic director of International Contemporary Ensemble and MacArthur Fellow (’12)
- Lucy Dhegrae '12, mezzo-soprano, Director of Resonant Bodies Festival
- Beth Morrison, creative producer of Beth Morrison Projects and the Prototype Festival
- Kelli O’Hara, soprano (Broadway, Metropolitan Opera)
- Pierre Vallet, conductor, pianist, vocal coach at the Metropolitan Opera
- Peter Sellars, stage director
- Lucy Shelton, soprano
- Howard Watkins, assistant conductor at The Metropolitan Opera
- Melissa Wegner '08, associate director of the National Council Auditions at the Metropolitan Opera
- Zachary Woolfe, music editor and critic at the New York Times