Meet the Artistic Director
Everett McCorvey, tenor
Everett McCorvey, tenor, is a native of Montgomery, Alabama. He received his degrees from the University of Alabama, including a Doctorate of Musical Arts. He has performed in many cities around the world and theaters across the country, including the Metropolitan Opera, the Kennedy Center, Aspen Music Festival, Blossom Music Festival, Whitewater Opera Company, Radio City Music Hall, Birmingham Opera Theater, Teatro Comunale in Florence, Italy, Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, England, as well as performances throughout Spain, the Czech and Slovac Republics, Austria, Japan, China, Brazil, Poland, Portugal and Hungary, Mexico, Peru and France. He is tenor soloist on two CD recordings conducted by Maestro Julius Williams, one entitled Symphonic Brotherhood featuring the Bohuslave Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra performing the symphonic works of African-American Composers released in the fall of 1994, and one entitled The American Soloist featuring the Dvorak Symphony in Prague, Czech Republic released the fall of 2004 highlighting new American works. He has returned to the Czech Republic to perform with the Bohuslave Martinu Philharmonic under the baton of Maestro Kirk Trevor as well as to the Slovac Republic. He has also appeared in television movies and feature films including The Long Walk Home.
Dr. McCorvey’s operatic roles include Don Jose in Carmen, Ferrando in Cosi Fan Tutte, Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, Fenton in Falstaff, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus, Puck in La Grande Duchess de Gerolstein, and many others. Orchestra and Oratorio works include the Beethoven Symphony #9, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Mozart’s Requiem, Verdi’s Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Bach’s Mass in B Minor and the St. Matthew Passion, among others.
As a recitalist, Dr. McCorvey has given concerts, master classes and workshops throughout the United States, Europe, South America and Asia as a soloist and with his wife, soprano Alicia Helm. Mr. McCorvey presented a recital and Master Classes in Beijing, China and recently returned from Warsaw, Poland where he performed with the Warsaw Symphony Orchestra as a part of a commemoration concert for the events of September 11th.
Dr. McCorvey is the founder and Music Director of the American Spiritual Ensemble, a group of 24 professional singers performing spirituals and other compositions of African-American composers. In its 17 year history, the group has presented over 200 concerts including 17 tours of the United States and 13 tours of Spain. The American Spiritual Ensemble has released five CD’s, On My Journey Now—The American Spiritual Ensemble on Tour, Ol’ Time Religion, Lily of the Valley, The Spirit of the Holidays and the recently released CD Swing Low, Sweet Chariot, In March of 2004, The American Spiritual Ensemble was invited to Madrid by the city of Madrid to present a commemoration concert dedicated to the victims of the March 11th bombing in Madrid. In February of 2007, US Public Broadcasting Stations (PBS) presented a nationwide special on the American Spiritual Ensemble. This past March 2013, the American Spiritual Ensemble made successful debuts in Quito Ecuador at the XII Fextival de Musica Sacra and in Fargo, North Dakota at the Music of the America’s Symposium sponsored by North Dakota State University and the American Choral Director’s Association.
The fall of 2004 Dr. McCorvey produced a CD for Metropolitan Opera Soprano Angela Brown which was released by Albany Records in October, 2004. The CD entitled Mosaic has received rave reviews. Ms. Brown, who’s Metropolitan Opera Debut in the title role of Aida was called the most exciting debut since Leontyne Price, is a protégée of Dr. McCorvey’s. The CD release coincided with her MET debut.
Dr. McCorvey toured the United States, Europe and the Far East with the Sherwin Goldman Production of Porgy and Bess. In 1992 he played the role of Peter in the Asian debut of Porgy and Bess, in Tokyo, Japan. Dr. McCorvey has served on the faculty of the New York State Summer School of the Arts in Saratoga Springs, New York where he was Artist-in-Residence and Associate Conductor and is also a frequent advisory panelist and on-site reviewer for the National Endowment for the Arts Opera/Musical Theatre program in Washington, D.C.
Dr. McCorvey produced the second only full-length recording of The Tender Land by Aaron Copland with the University of Kentucky Opera Theatre recorded in Zlin, Czech Republic and released January 2002, featuring singers from the University of Kentucky Opera Theatre Program with Kirk Trevor conducting the Boshuslave Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra. Two other CD’s released in 2008 produced by McCorvey include a world premiere of a new opera, The Hotel Casablanca, by Thomas Pasatieri, performed by the University of Kentucky Opera Theatre and a collection of songs by John Jacob Niles, performed by soprano Hope Koehler. Both recordings were released by Albany Records. In the spring of 2010 UK Opera Theatre released a new CD of Die Fledermaus with Maestro John Nardolillo conducting and in December of 2010 a World Premiere CD of Thomas Pasatieri’s new opera God Bless Us Everyone which premiered in New York at DiCapo Opera with students from UK Opera Theatre and which received a rave New York Times Review.
Dr. McCorvey has served as guest Master Clinician at the Opera Theatre of St. Louis Artist in their Artist-In-Training Program and for 4 summers, Dr. McCorvey served on the faculty of the American Institute of Musical Studies (AIMS) in Graz, Austria.
Dr. McCorvey is of the belief that every citizen in the country should find ways to give back to his community. He has been very dynamic as a volunteer working to keep the arts part of the civic conversation. He is currently serving on the boards of the Picnic with the Pops Commission, the Lyric Theatre, the Hillary Boone Center, the Cultural Arts Center Board where he was a Founding Board Member, and he is the Vice-Chairman of the Kentucky Arts Council for the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Past board activities have included the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees where he was elected by the faculty to be their representative on the Board of Trustees, the University of Kentucky Athletics Association Board, University of Kentucky Library Associates Executive Committee, the Lexington Center Corporation Board, the Lexington Arts Council Board, the Lexington Philharmonic Board and the Lexington Ballet Boards.
In 1999, Dr. McCorvey was chair of the President’s Convocation which celebrated the commemoration of 50 Years of African-Americans at the University of Kentucky—a year-long celebration which culminated in the visit of Archbishop Desmond Tutu. National Board affiliations have included the Board of the National Association of State Arts Agencies, The National Opera Association Board of Directors, the Knoxville Museum of Art National Board, the Louisiana Dance Foundation National Board and the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games Foundation Board. He is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing organization (NATS), the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), Actors Equity Association (AEA), Screen Actors Guild (SAG), the American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA) and he is on the Advisory Panel for the National Endowment for the Arts Opera/Musical Theater Program. His awards have included the 2014 Amazing 8 Award presented by the Camp Horsin’ Around organization as they honored 8 personalities in the Lexington community who make Lexington a better place, the 2012 St. Peter Clavier Hope Award Recipient, the Links Inc. Community Service Award and in 2009 he was award a Kentucky Star given to people who have achieved significant artistic contributions in their field, and the 1998 Acorn Award Recipient for Outstanding Teaching given by the Kentucky Advocates for Higher Education. This prestigious Award goes to only one professor in the state of Kentucky who exemplifies excellence, innovation and creativity in teaching and research.
Dr. McCorvey has received the Society for the Fine Arts Alumnus Arts Award from the University of Alabama, his Alma Mater, and the Lyman T. Johnson Alumni Association Outstanding Teaching Award and the Teacher who Made a Difference Award from the University of Kentucky. He is a member of the Omicron Delta Kappa Honorary, the Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society and the Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity. He is currently the voice that is heard on many of the national University of Kentucky commercials and he is the University Orator. Dr. McCorvey holds an Endowed Chair in Opera Studies and is Director of Opera and Professor of Voice at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Kentucky.
In September of 2010, Dr. McCorvey served as the Executive Producer of the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the Alltech 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games held in Lexington, Kentucky. The Opening Ceremony was broadcasted on NBC Sports and was viewed by over 500 million people worldwide. The Alltech 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games was the largest equestrian event to ever be held in the United States.
He is married to soprano Alicia Helm. They have three children.