Director of Choral Activities
Dr. Lauren Fowler-Calisto is Assistant Professor and newly appointed Director of Choral Activities at William Paterson University. She conducts the Concert Choir and Chamber Singers, and teaches conducting and courses in music education.
Prior to her position at William Paterson she served as the Associate Director of Choral Activities in the School of Music at the University of Southern Mississippi Before that, she served for fifteen years as the Director of Choral Studies at Christopher Newport University in Newport News, VA where she conducted the CNU Chamber Choir, Women’s Chorus, and Men’s Chorus, and taught graduate and undergraduate conducting, as well as applied voice and vocal improvisation. Previous positions include Associate Director of Choirs and Specialist in Choral Music Education and Vocal Jazz at Iowa State University, as well as the University of South Dakota and St. Norbert College.
Dr. Fowler-Calisto received her Doctor of Arts degree from the University of Northern Colorado in Choral Conducting with a cognate in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy. She also holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Concordia College, Moorhead, MN, and a Master of Music in Performance degree in conducting from the University of Arizona.
Christopher Dylan Herbert
Vocal Area Coordinator
Dr. Christopher Dylan Herbert (baritone) is an Assistant Professor at William Paterson University. He served as an adjunct faculty member here for two years before taking leadership of the Voice Program. He teaches one-on-one voice lessons, advises students, manages and coordinates the Vocal Program, and directs Opera Workshop.
As a professional vocalist, Dr. Herbert performs frequently throughout North America, Europe, Asia, and is a two-time GRAMMY® nominee. He has soloed with The San Francisco Symphony and Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, performed Ginastera centennial celebrations with International Contemporary Ensemble and the Choir of Trinity Wall Street, and consistently presents Winterize – an outdoor adaptation of Winterreise with transistor radios.
He holds a B.A. in Music from Yale University, an M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from Harvard University, and D.M.A. in Voice from The Juilliard School. His current research focus is on the music of the eighteenth-century Ephrata Cloister of Pennsylvania. He is the baritone in the critically acclaimed ensemble New York Polyphony.
Karen Born-Cafaro, Voice
A native of Wisconsin, Karen received her undergraduate degree in Music Education at William Paterson University where she was awarded Outstanding Senior Educator, and her Masters in Vocal Performance at the University of Southern California where she received the Faculty Award for Best Student. Karen performed with the West Coast Opera Outreach in Los Angeles and San Diego, CA. Highlights were singing Susanna (Le nozze di Figaro) with director Franz Bourlage and conductor Randall Behr and premiering The Wife in a one act opera under the direction of Christopher Larkin. She has also performed extensively in Musical Theater touring with the John Michael Kohler Regional Theater Company. Some of her roles include Maria (The Sound of Music), Bianca (Kiss Me Kate) Anne (A Little Night Music) Berthe (Pippin) Josephine (HMS Pinafore) and Yum Yum (The Mikado). Karen also specialized in contemporary music appearing at Symphony Space in NYC with the New Jersey New Music Ensemble as well as touring with the San Diego New Music Ensemble and premiered "The Telephone" by Peter Westergard at the Cape May Music Festival. Karen has also recorded vocal tracks for English and Spanish commercials and is requested for recording original works by composer and organist K. Scott Warren of NYC. She sings professionally on the choir circuit in NYC and continues to solo in New Jersey and New York. Karen debuted as a soloist at Carnegie Hall with Mid America Productions under the direction of John Rutter.
As a teacher, Karen taught on faculty at USC, and as a guest artist at Columbia University and NYU. She is an active member of NATS. Karen is co-owner and co-founder of the performing arts school Gateway To The Arts in Boonton, NJ. Her students have gone on to receive scholarships from competitive fine arts conservatories and universities, attain professional management and agent representation, and perform professionally across the country and abroad. For more information visit www.Gatetothearts.com
Lois Buesser, Voice Coach / Accompanist
Lois Buesser studied Piano Performance and Voice at Oklahoma City University, graduating Summa Cum Laude and named Outstanding Senior Woman. She has been Accompanist and Music Director for regional, community and school theatres in New Jersey, North Carolina and Oklahoma. She presents concerts which meld various genres and guest performers into a Musical Extravaganza! The productions have included piano, vocal, cello, organ, and rock band music, tap and ballet dancers, and her clever Musical Memory Medleys. Ms. Buesser toured Europe and Asia with the USO/DOD, and has performed with Susan Powell, Bob Hope, Lara Teeter, Teri Bibb and Stacey Logan. In Branson, MO, Lois played Ragtime piano, and conducted the Silver Dollar City amphitheater’s premier show. She’s sung with Pro Arte Chorale, Piedmont Chamber Singers, and i Cantori di New York. She taught Kindermusik, accompanied at UNCG, and is a church and temple organist. With Light Opera of New Jersey, she accompanies, conducts and arranges music for cabarets, operas, operettas, and musical theatre.
David Guzman, Voice
Dr. David Guzman begins the 2017-2018 season as Orpheus in Orpheus in the Underworld in a return engagement with Western Plains Opera. Other engagements include the role of Alfredo in La Traviata with Sarasota Opera, the tenor soloist in Carmina Burana with both the Minot Symphony Association and the Hartford Symphony. Recent highlights include the Duke in Rigoletto with Opera Tampa, Rafael of Foglia/Martinez's To Cross the Face of the Moon with Arizona Opera, as well as performances with Lyric Opera of San Diego, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera and at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris. He holds a B.A. in Music Education from Universidad Pedagogica Nacional de Colombia, an M.M. in Voice Performance from Texas Christian University and a D.M.A. in Voice performance from SUNY at Stony Brook. His recent CD release, Latin-American Art Songs, is the first result of his continuous research of forgotten Latin-American art song repertoire and performance practices. www.davidguzmantenor.com
Warren Helms, Voice Coach / Accompanist
Warren Helms has been seen on prime time television accompanying Susan Boyle and has performed with actress Ann Jillian, The Irish Tenors, Aretha Franklin and Clay Aiken. Warren collaborated with Bill Whelan, the composer of “Riverdance” with the Atelier project at Princeton University. Currently a faculty member of The Juilliard School, William Paterson University, and Caldwell University, Warren was previously a faculty member of The Manhattan School of Music, where he musical directed the American Musical Theatre Ensemble and served as coach/accompanist for their opera productions. Mr. Helms was assistant conductor/pianist for the Broadway production of Showboat at the Gershwin Theatre and is presently the music director for The Women’s Theater of NJ and with The Bickford Theatre. Warren is Musical Director of Coro Lirico and Director of Music at The Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Wayne, NJ.
Nancy Marano, Voice
Nancy Marano has performed in Jazz Festivals at North Sea, Helsinki, JVC in NYC, Tai Wan, and Women In Jazz. She has sung in concert with The WDR Radio Big Bands of Koln and Slovenia, and with Barry Harris. She has been profiled by Billy Taylor on CBS Sunday Morning, by Whitney Balliett in The New Yorker, on NPR “Crossover” and in The Wall Street Journal. Nancy has recorded 8 CDs as leader, including with the 62-piece Netherlands Metropole Orchestra, arranged by Manny Albam. She is a guest vocalist on albums with Benny Carter and Dick Hyman, and has also recorded with Gerry Mulligan, Claudio Roditi, Grady Tate, Michael Abene, Roger Kellaway, and Michel Legrand. Nancy teaches yearly at the Conservatories of Amsterdam and Rotterdam, The Hague, and Groningen. Past clinics include Slovenia, Germany, and Italy. Faculty at WPU since 1993. Previously 20 years at Manhattan School of Music. She conducts Vocal Jazz Workshops in NYC and offers private lessons in Voice, Piano and Ear-Training. She is the author of Musicianship For the Jazz Vocalist. www.NancyMarano.com
June Marano-Murray, Voice Coach / Accompanist
June Marano-Murray received her Bachelor and Master Degrees in piano and accompanying from Manhattan School of Music where she was a recipient of the prestigious Harold Bauer Award. Credits include: Wolf Trap Opera, Lake George Opera, Chautauqua Opera, Central City Opera, Pepsico Summerfare, NY Opera Repertory Theater, and the Berkshire Choral Institute. She has been music director for opera productions at Asolo Opera in Sarasota, Florida, the Bel Canto Opera in New York, and performed and taught at the First International Summer Music Festival in Taiwan. A former Gramma Fisher scholarship recipient (which enabled her to study and perform at the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria), she is a former lecturer at SUNY- Purchase, Music Director for Purchase Opera Theater, and for Mannes College of Music. As a member of the opera coaching staff at Manhattan School of Music, she also accompanied the Birgit Nilsson Master Class series for five years. She is a member of the American Guild of Organists, and serves as choir director/organist for the Second Reformed Church in Hackensack, New Jersey. She also is a free lance coach and piano teacher. She is also on faculty at the Manhattan School of Music.
Thomas Paster, Voice
Thomas Paster is the director of the William Paterson Advanced Pop Vocal Ensemble, a small group that performs contemporary a cappella music. He is also the director of vocal music at Northern Highlands Regional High School in Allendale, NJ. His a cappella group Highlands Voices was featured on the Lifetime TV show Pitch Slapped. They were the 2015 A Cappella Educators Assoc. National Champions, the 2014 ICHSA National Champions, and they also won the Mid-Atlantic States A Cappella Championship six times. Mr. Paster is also an active composer/arranger/ensemble coach and has taught classes on contemporary a cappella and a cappella arranging for ACDA, NAfME, the National A Cappella Convention, and the Boston A Cappella Festival. Mr. Paster holds a B.M. from Ithaca College and an M.S. from the University of Scranton. He is a recipient of the Yale University Distinguished Music Educator Award and is proud to be the NJ representative for the A Cappella Education Association.
Tami Petty, Voice
Dr. Tami L. Petty (soprano) is the 2014 Award Recipient of the Joy in Singing Prize. She made her 2010 Lincoln Center debut singing Rossini’s Petite Messe Solonelle at Alice Tully Hall. The New York Times praised Petty’s “powerful soprano,” and Classical Music Network declared, “Such a beauty and purity of tone is so rare that I could only listen in ethereal pleasure." Recitalist of the first rank, she has performed locally with Brooklyn Art Song Society, 5BMF, Caritas for St. Ignatius Loyola, Joy in Singing, and NYSTA. Winner of multiple career grants with special recognition from Marilyn Horne Foundation and Sorel Organization, and graduate of Eastman School of Music in Vocal Performance, Dr. Petty also teaches voice privately and at AMDA, and she serves as Director of Music in the East Village at Middle Collegiate Church where she oversees ecclectic music programming. Please visit www.TamiPetty.com for more information.
Sarah Elizabeth Wolfson, Voice
Sarah Elizabeth Wolfson (soprano) has demonstrated a remarkable ability to communicate with an audience, whether in recital, oratorio, or on the operatic stage. The New York Times called her “a keenly intelligent artist…[she sings] with luminous sound and impressively focused high notes.” A graduate of The Juilliard School, she has been seen in recital and concert at Carnegie Hall, Avery Fischer Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Rockport Chamber Music Festival, Miller Theater, Café Sabarsky at The Neue Galerie, Miami Museum of Contemporary Art, and with the New York Festival of Song. She has sung with The Metropolitan Opera, Opéra de Montpellier, The Santa Fe Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Opera North, Spoleto Festival USA, Aspen Music Festival, The Ravinia Festival, La Jolla Summerfest, The American Symphony Orchestra, American Composers Orchestra, Vocal Arts Society of Washington, DC. In addition to performing, Ms. Wolfson is a voice instructor who has taught vocal performance at Columbia University, performed masterclasses at various institutions across the US, and is currently on faculty at William Paterson University and Hofstra University. www.sarahwolfson.com