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Beth Ray Westlund
B.A., Psychology, Music/Music Education, Luther College
M.M., Applied Voice, University of Texas-Austin
D.M.A., Applied Voice, University of Texas-Austin
Licensed Body Mapping Educator, 2018
Mezzo-soprano Beth Ray Westlund is an active performer, teacher, clinician, and scholar. Featured professional performances include: the Angel in Sir Edward Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius, Rahab in Jesse Ayer’s Rahab, J. S. Bach Magnificat, St. John Passion, Christmas Oratorio, and Mass in B minor; Beethoven Mass in C and Symphony no. 9; Brahms Alto Rhapsody, Handel Messiah and Belshazzar; Haydn Missa Sanctae Caecilae, Missa in tempore belli, Missa in Angustiis and Heligmesse; Mozart Requiem and Vesperae Solennes; Duruflé Requiem, Vaughan Williams Mass in g minor, and Richard Einhorn’s Voices of Light, performed with Anonymous 4.
Operatic credits include Dido in Dido and Aeneas, Dorabella in Così fan tutti, Zita in Gianni Schicchi, Prince Orlofsky in Die Fledermaus, Mother Marie in Dialogues of the Carmelites, and Mrs. Grose in Turn of the Screw.
Dr. Ray earned the M.M. and D.M.A. degrees at the University of Texas at Austin. She is associate professor of music at her alma mater Luther College, where she teaches studio voice, diction, opera scenes, Body Mapping, and serves as Associate Department Head. Previous to this, she was assistant professor of voice at Ithaca College School of Music in Ithaca, New York. An article based on her doctoral treatise, “Dominick Argento’s Casa Guidi: A Character and Musical Study” appeared in Journal of Singing. Dr. Ray has given multiple presentations of her 2010 sabbatical research on the dramatic context surrounding operatic arias of G.F. Handel. She has long been interested in incorporating elements of performance psychology, mindfulness, Alexander Technique, and anatomically sound use of the body in her teaching. Her current research focus is Body Mapping for musicians, a method for improving the quality of physical movement in order to enhance performance and avoid injury. She was licensed in 2018 as a Body Mapping Educator, through the Association for Body Mapping Education.
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