Benjamin DeShazo-Couchot
Lyric Baritone


Directorships/Board Positions

- Music Teacher at St. Edward School, Newark (www.stedwardnewark.org) (Fall 2012 - Present)
- Associate Director/Conductor of the St. Edward School Choir (Pueri Cantores), Newark (Fall 2012 - Present)

- Music Director at Holy Family Episcopal Church, Rohnert Park (Fall 2010 - Spring 2012)
- Founder/Programs Director at the Holistic Arts and Learning Organization (HALO) (Spring 2011 - Spring 2012)
- Board Member at Numina Center for Spirituality and the Arts (www.numinacenter.org) (Summer 2011 - Summer 2012)

Ensembles

- Pacific Mozart Ensemble (www.pacificmozart.org) (Fall 2012 - Present)
- St. Edward Parish Choir - "Principal Baritone"(Fall 2012 - Present)
- Sonoma State University String Orchestra(Fall 2011/Spring 2012)
- Sonoma State University Chamber Singers (Fall 2011)
- Indian Singing Ensemble (Fall 2011)
- Sonoma State University Opera (Fall 2010 - Spring 2011)
- Collaboratively Directed Vocal Jazz Sextet - "Mixed Vibes" (Spring 2010 - Summer 2011)
- Cinnabar Theater Opera Chorus (Spring 2010)
- Santa Rosa Junior College Chamber Singers (Spring/Fall 2008, Spring/Fall 2009, Spring 2010)
- Santa Rosa Junior College Concert Choir (Spring/Fall 2008, Spring 2010)
- Sacramento Opera Chorus (Fall 2009)
- Sacramento City College Chorale (Fall 2009)
- Sacramento City College Men's Ensemble (Fall 2009)
- All Saints Church Choir (Fall 2009)
- Santa Rosa Junior College Harmony Corporation (Spring/Fall 2007, Spring/Fall 2008, Spring 2009)
- St. Cecilia Church Choir (Spring 2008, Spring 2009)
- Vocal Jammin' Toast/Student Collaborative Vocal Jazz Sextet (Summer 2007, Fall 2007)
- Montgomery High School Chamber Singers (Fall 2004, Spring/Fall 2005, Spring 2006)
- Montgomery High School Concert Choir (Spring/Fall 2004, Fall 2005, Spring 2006)
- Student Directed Jazz Octet (Fall 2004, Spring/Fall 2005, Spring 2006)
- MHS Barbershop Quartet (Fall 2005, Spring 2006)

Operas

- The Pirates of Penzance, by Gilbert and Sullivan
   Role: The Sergeant of Police (Fall 2011)

- Die Fledermaus, by Johann Strauss (English: trans. Kanin/Dietz, adapt. Amanda McTigue)
   Roles: Dr. Blind and Opera Chorister (Spring 2011)

- Emmeline, by Tobias Picker
   Role: Opera Chorister (Spring 2010)

- L'Elisir D'Amor, by Gaetano Donizetti (original Italian score)
   Role: Opera Chorister (Fall 2009)

Musicals

- Purgatory: A music Theatre Revue, by Benjamin DeShazo-Couchot and peers
   Role: Melvin the Mailman (Spring 2012)

- Kiss Me Kate, by Cole Porter
   Role: Paul (Too Darn Hot!) (Spring 2006)

- Montgomery High School Madrigal Dinner
   Role: The King (Fall 2005)

- A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens, adapted by Gerald Freedman
   Role: Mr. Fezziwig (among others) (Fall 2005)

- The Music Man, by Meredith Wilson
   Role: Chorus Member (Spring 2004)

Theatre (no singing)

- Alice
   Role: White Rabbit (Spring 2011)


Education

Sonoma State University, class of 2012
  B.A. in Music (Liberal Arts Music)


Master Classes and Workshops:

- Masayuki Koga, Breath Master Class - East Bay Center for the Performing Arts, Richmond (Summer 2012)
- Wesla Whitfield, Voice (Jazz) Master Class - Sonoma State University, Rohnert Park (Spring 2012)
- Ruth Ann Swenson, Voice Master Class - Sonoma State University, Rohnert Park (Fall 2011)
- Janice Timm, Summer Directors' Workshop - Choristers Guild of the Greater San Francisco Bay Area (Summer 2011)
- Jacqueline Victorino, Voice Master Class - Sacramento City College, Sacramento (Fall 2009)

Music Directors/Conductors

- Dr. Lynne Morrow: Pacific Mozart Ensemble, Sonoma State UniversityOpera
- Dr. Jenny Bent: Sonoma State University Chamber Singers
- Dr. Laxmi Tewari:
Indian Singing Ensemble (Sonoma State University)
- Nina Schuman: Cinnabar Theater Opera Chorus
- Jody Benecke: Santa Rosa Junior College Concert Choir, SRJC Chamber Singers, SRJC Harmony Corporation
- Ming Luke/Timm Rolek: Sacramento Opera Chorus
- Doreen Irwin: Sacramento City College Chorale, SCC Men's Ensemble
- Carol Menke: St. Cecilia Church Choir
- Dana Alexander: Montgomery High School Concert Choir, MHS Chamber Singers, MHS Barbershop Quartet

I have also sung under the direction of:
- Michael Morgan (at the Sacramento Philharmonic)
- Gabriel Sakakeeny (American Philharmonic of Sonoma County)
- Corrick Brown
- Dr. Iris Levine (of CalPoly Pomona - MACCC Conference)
...among other notable individuals.

Directors

- John Degaetano: Raven Theatre Company
- Christine Ormseth (student director): "Alice"
- Amanda McTigue
: Sonoma State University's "Die Fledermaus"

- Elly Lichenstein: Cinnabar Theater (Opera)
- José Maria Condemi: Sacramento Opera Theater Company
- Susanne Byrne: Montgomery High School Musical Theater
- Elke Matzen: Montgomery High School Theater Department

Private Voice Instructors & Vocal Coach/Accompanists

- David Burnakus: Private Instructor (Fall 2010 - Spring 2012)
- Richard Riccardi: Vocal Coach/Accompanist (Fall 2011 - Spring 2012)
- Dr. Lynne Morrow: Diction (Fall 2010)
- Yvonne Wormer: Vocal Coach/Accompanist (Fall 2010 - Spring 2011)

- Peter Benecke: Private Instructor (2007 - 2009)
- Jody Benecke: Private Instructor/Diction (Fall 2008, Spring 2009)
- Dr. Leslie Dukes: Vocal Coach/Accompanist (Fall 2008, Spring 2009)
- Ray Crowder: Barbershop-style coaching (Fall 2005/Spring 2006)

Scholarships

- Evert B. Person Scholarship
      Awarded by the Sonoma State University Music Department Scholarship Committee for the 2011/2012 school year
- Channing - Kullijian Scholarship
      Awarded by the Sonoma State University Music Department Scholarship Committee for the 2011/2012 school year
- Evert B. Person Scholarship
      Awarded by the Sonoma State University Music Department Scholarship Committee for the 2010/2011 school year
- Demetrio and Theresa Jeffry Scholarship
      Awarded by the Sonoma State University Music Department Scholarship Committee for the 2010/2011 school year
- Mead Clark and Senator Herbert W. Slater Student Singer Scholarship
      Awarded by the Santa Rosa Junior College Foundation for continued studies at Sonoma State University (Spring 2010)

Additional Awards
Music related accomplishments in bold.

- President's Honors: Sacramento City College (Fall 2009)
- International Baccalaureate Certificate in Spanish (2006)
- International Baccalaureate Certificate in the Visual Arts (2006)
- Who's Who of American High School Students (2005)
- United States Academic Decathlon: Gold Medal in Music (2005)
- United States Academic Decathlon: Bronze Medal in Essay Writing (2005)
- United States Academic Decathlon: Bronze Medal in History (2005)
- 4th Place Trophy: Folsom Jazz Festival
     Awarded to the Student Directed Jazz Octet (2005)
- Outstanding Soloist Recognition Medal: Folsom Jazz Festival (2005)
- Who's Who of American High School Students (2004)
- Inducted into the National Society of High School Scholars (2004)
- United States Academic Decathlon : Silver Medal in Essay Writing (2004)
- United States Academic Decathlon: 4th Place in Speech (2004)
- United States Academic Decathlon: 4th Place in Music (2004)
- Inducted into the Johns Hopkins' Talented Youth Society

Additional Items of Mention

- Santa Rosa Junior College Choral Department Board (2008)
      Public Relations/Gig Coordinator & Social Chair
- Santa Rosa Junior College Concert Choir/Chamber Singers Tenor Section Leader/Sectional Rehearsal Director
      (Spring/Fall 2008  & Spring 2010)

- SRJC Commencement 2010 Star-Spangled Banner soloist
- SRJC President's Annual Address to the Community 2010 - Star-Spangled Banner soloist
- Founder/Director of the St. Gabriel Choir (Inter-generational/Adult) --- Founded in Fall of 2010
- Director/Coordinator/Conceptual Designer of "La Primavera - Songs for Springtime" charity concert for Neighbor's    
       Organized Against Hunger (food pantry) - Over $1,100 raised ($880.00 for NOAH, $250 for the St. Gabriel choir) ---   
       April 8th, 2011

Musical Background