Director of Vocal Studies
Office: Fine Arts 315
Soprano Lawana Newell brings an extensive background as a performer and teacher to the Department of Fine Arts at Northwestern Oklahoma State University.
Currently Mrs. Newell is a candidate for the DMA Degree in Vocal Performance at the University of Oklahoma where she studies with Dr. Dolores Leffingwell. She completed graduate studies in Vocal Performance at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, MA. As an undergraduate she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with a double major in Church Music and Music Education from Pfeiffer College, a private Methodist college located in Misenheimer, NC where she was one of three students nationally chosen to receive a Fellowship of United Methodist Musicians Merit Scholarship.
Previously Lawana Newell studied voice with such renowned teachers as George Bitzas, Jerry Helton, Joan Heller, Kathryn Wright, Bernard Barbeau and Dr. Richard Brewer. She has participated in vocal master classes with such internationally acclaimed artists as Elly Ameling, Phyllis Curtin, Eleanor Steber and Marilyn Horne. Additionally, Mrs. Newell has worked with vocal coaches Terry Decima, Jana Ernst, Dr. Thomas Bandy and participated in opera workshops led by William Ferrara, David Bartholomew and James Gardner.
As a soprano soloist, Lawana Newell has performed with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, Knoxville Chamber Orchestra, Enid Symphony Orchestra, McLean Symphony Orchestra, New England Conservatory Symphony Orchestra, Enid-Phillips Chorale and Orchestra, Pfeiffer College Concert and Symphonic Choirs and the Northwestern Oklahoma State University Choir. She has performed operatic roles with the University of Oklahoma Opera Theatre and Opera Workshop, Baylor University Opera Theatre and the New England Conservatory of Music Opera Theatre. Among her experience in the field of musical theatre are appearances with the Gaslight Theater, Morristown Community Theater, Winston-Salem Community Theater and the Pfeiffer College Musical Theatre. Her leading and primary roles include Guinevere in Camelot, Lilli Vanessi in Kiss Me Kate, Eve in The Apple Tree, Little Mary in Little Mary Sunshine and Lady Larkin in Once Upon A Mattress.
Prior to returning to the faculty of NWOSU this Fall, Lawana Newell has served on the faculties of Pfeiffer College and Walters State Community College. In addition to her vocal accomplishments, Mrs. Newell is a talented vocal accompanist, choral director and organist. She has had extensive experience developing church music programs including adult, youth, graded children choirs and hand bell programs.