Willie Anthony Waters
Asst. Visiting Professor, Vocal Coach/
Stage Techniques Class
Maestro Willie Anthony Waters is formerly General and Artistic Director of Connecticut Opera, and formerly Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of Florida Grand Opera. He has been a guest conductor for the Australian Opera (now Opera Australia), Boston Lyric Opera, Cologne Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Fort Worth Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, New York City Opera, L'Opéra de Montréal, Opera Memphis, San Diego Opera, Vancouver Opera, Opéra de Québec and opera companies and symphony orchestras in Cape Town, Pretoria, and Durban, South Africa. He has conducted concerts with the Hartford Symphony, the Florida Philharmonic, Detroit Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony as well as several European orchestras, including the Bavarian Radio Orchestra in Munich. He conducted two gala concerts (for Connecticut Opera and Opera Colorado) with renown mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves. In May, 2005, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Hartford/The Hartt School for his contributions to the musical life of the city of Hartford. Maestro Waters is a frequent guest panelist on the quiz of the Metropolitan Opera broadcasts. In July, 2008, he made his debut at the Deutsche Oper, Berlin, conducting the Cape Town Opera production of Porgy and Bess. (He conducted the first-ever production of Porgy in Cape Town in 1995). From 2009 to 2012, Mo. Waters was Adjunct Instructor of Opera, and Music Director of the Opera Theater at the University of Connecticut (Storrs). Since 2004, he has been music director of Prelude to Performance, a summer training program for young singers sponsored by the Martina Arroyo Foundation in New York City. In January, 2011 Maestro Waters conducted the 31st Luther King Celebration Concert with the Cleveland Orchestra, Bernstein's Candide for the University of Connecticut's Opera Theater, "A Night at the Opera" with the Hartford Symphony, and an evening of opera choruses with Concora, a fully-professional chorus in Hartford. Among his most recent engagements are Tosca for Opera Memphis, The Grand Duchess of Gérolstein, for the Franco-American Vocal Academy (France) and University of Connecticut Opera Theater, The Tales of Hoffmann for the Franco-American Vocal Academy, and Die Fledermaus at Northwestern University. He has recently conducted Robert Ward's The Crucible and Die Zauberflöte at UConn, Mendelssohn's Elijah for Opera Naples, and L'elisir d'amore for prelude to Performance. He will conduct Il Barbiere di Siviglia for Prelude this summer. In September, 2014, he will join the faculty of Binghamton University in Binghamton, New York. He will also head a two-week residency at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, TN, focusing on all aspects of opera production and performance. In June, 2016, he will conduct a series of opera/pops concerts in Russia.