Robert L. Jefferson
Baritone, Robert L. Jefferson
, has performed throughout the United States, Japan, Korea, and Australia.
operatic roles include Count Almaviva and Figaro in Mozart's, Le nozze di Figaro, Schaunard in Puccini's, La bohème, Baron Mirko Zeta in Lehár's, The Merry Widow, King Balthazar in Menotti's Amahl and the Night Visitors, scenes from Porgy and Bess, Les Misérables, South Pacific and others.
has also performed as soloist in oratorio and other choral works, such as Handel's Messiah, Fauré's Requiem, and Ernest Bloch's, Sacred Service.
In addition to the classical repertoire, Jefferson
is an outstanding interpreter of American Patriotic as well as traditional music from the rich African-American heritage.
has performed with such notable organizations as the Houston Grand Opera, the United States Air Force Pacific Air Command Ensemble in Tokyo, Japan as well as the Soldiers' Chorus of The United States Army Field Band, Washington, DC.
has also performed with major symphonic orchestras and in concert halls including Strathmore, Meyerhoff, Boston Symphony and Carnegie Hall
, and has taught at the elementary through college levels.
Dr. Jefferson holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Grand Canyon University, Phoenix, Arizona, a Master of Music degree from the University of Houston, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Maryland.
Being an accomplished pianist and composer, Jefferson is also skilled in jazz and gospel.
is the author of the most popular and comprehensive books on the study of Gospel Music Performance Practice and Technique.
text book, Spirituals and Gospel Music Performance Practice: A Dual Curriculum that Bridges the Cultural Divide, is used by educators as a guide in developing a curriculum in the study of Gospel Music and Spirituals in the classroom environment.
is published by Oxford University Press
, Theodore Presser, Carl Fischer, as well as other publishers.
Please visit Dr. Robert L. Jefferson
at www.jeffersonpresents.com and follow him on Facebook and Twitter
Jefferson at Workshop
About Dr. Jefferson's Background and Philosophy
Jefferson's first piano teacher, Mary O. Lewis along with his
numerous mentors, including Alma Androzzo, the composer of one of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr's most favorite songs; "If I Can Help Somebody," instilled in him at an early age the importance of writing down and sharing what he
had learned with others.
was developing his
leadership and entrepreneurial skills under the guidance of his
parents and elders.
As a young child, his
mother would take him to churches throughout Arizona to play for events throughout the Arizona National Baptist Convention
lovingly jokes with his
mother, "You took me on a circuit when I was a kid.
eventually started teaching private piano at age 14.
continues to have an insatiable curiosity about numerous topics, from music, to investing, to human relationships.
Motivated by God's love for him through Jesus Christ, Jefferson feels that because of God's mercy and grace toward him, he
will always remain indebted to his
Savior, Jesus Christ.
Because of his
broad interests, Jefferson
did not feel that he
had to limit himself to one particular style of music.
early training began with Gospel Music through the church, playing by ear; and learning Classical Music through his
private piano lessons.
sometimes says, "It was like learning two different languages simultaneously.
At church, there was very little written musical notation, while at school, however, there was only written musical notation.
As a result, both idioms were of equal importance."
naively thought that everyone had this same experience, but was surprised to find out that there were groups of musicians who play wonderfully by ear but the written score was like reading ancient Greek to them, and on the other hand, there were groups of musicians who could play almost any musical score you placed in front of them, but when it came to playing by ear, they were completely dumbfounded.
goes on to say, "Being able to read musical notation and play by ear has allowed me to have the best of both worlds.
God, through His
Son, Jesus Christ, has used music as a means of preparing Jefferson
purpose, the "unity of the faith."
Ephesians 4:11-13 And He
gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unit of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
Unity and diversity within the Body of Christ was not something that Jefferson
desired as a life long dream or passion, but God in His
mercy has seen fit that He
for this purpose.
"I would not choose this mission on my own, actually, I would rather be doing something that was less controversial, but may God's will be done in my life."
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Robert L. Jefferson