Eastman School of Music, of the University of Rochester, is proud to announce four full-time faculty appointments to the Voice, Opera and Vocal Coaching department for the 2023-24 academic year:
- Patrick Diamond, Associate Professor of Opera and Director of Production for Eastman Opera Theatre
- Joshua Conyers, Assistant Professor of Voice
- Kiera Duffy, Associate Professor of Voice
- Brock Tjosvold, Assistant Professor of Vocal Coaching
Katherine Ciesinski, Chair of the Voice, Opera and Vocal Coaching Department, shares, “Our department cheers the appointment of four new faculty members who will shape the future in all areas of instruction. They will support growth in our students’ vocal artistry and professional skills that will launch them to the forefront in the fields of performance, stage direction, education and community-building.”
Originally from New Mexico, Stage Director Pat Diamond creates work that is fresh, relatable, engaging and alive. He has selected and conspired to make projects which speak to the moment when they are being performed and reflect the artists he is collaborating with. His productions include both theatre and opera, ranging from established repertoire to new works and devised events. Diamond has directed productions of Shakespeare, Britten, Calderón de la Barca, Mozart, Puccini, Janáček, Mayakovsky and Verdi, among others.
Diamond is deeply committed to cultural sustainability and equity and inclusion, putting these values at the forefront of his work as an artist in the field. He is the Executive Producer of Unequal Temperament, a podcast series hosted and curated by Timothy Long, Associate Professor of Opera and Music Director of Eastman Opera Theatre, centering on Native American cultural issues, and featuring a series of frank, open conversations with artists of color from all backgrounds.
“My whole career I have had the opportunity to work with incredible artists who studied and worked at Eastman, many of whom have become my closest and most trusted collaborators over the years. I have so admired them, and they all have told me about how wonderful Eastman is,” Diamond says. “It feels like an understatement to say I am thrilled at the opportunity to join all of the wonderful artists at Eastman. I look forward to our work together!”
Prior to this appointment, he has been the Director of Yale Summer Sessions’ 10-Day Directing Workshop for the last 20 years. He has been a guest artist at NYU, University of Michigan and Vanderbilt’s Blair School of Music, and taught at Manhattan School of Music and University of Maryland. Pat was most recently on the faculty at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, as well as faculty at Yale School of Music and the David Geffen School of Drama at Yale, where he received his MFA in Directing. Read more about him by visiting his website.
Grammy-nominated Baritone Joshua Conyers has been singled out by Opera News for his “deliciously honeyed baritone that would seduce anyone” by The New York Times as having “a sonorous baritone” that “wheedled and seduced” and by The Washington Post for have a “show stealing” performance. A native of Bronx, NY, he is known for his captivating performances and recognized as one the promising dramatic voices of today. Mr. Conyers has performed with the most prestigious opera companies, symphonies, and concert halls in the United States and abroad such as The Metropolitan Opera, Seattle Opera, Washington National Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, English National Opera, The Atlanta Opera, Opera Omaha, Detroit Opera, Boston Lyric Opera, New York Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Brevard Music Center Orchestra, Memphis Symphony Orchestra, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Carnegie Hall and The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Mr. Conyers’ numerous vocal competition and award credits include Metropolitan Opera National Council District Winner (2010, 2011, 2015 & 2019), Catherine Filene Shouse Career Grant Award Winner, Annapolis Opera Top Prize Winner, Career Bridges Grant Award Winner, S. Livingston Mather Scholar Competition Top Winner, the Charlotte Opera Guild Competition Top Prize Winner, and the Heafner/Williams Vocal Competition Top Prize Winner. He has also participated in the training programs of Washington National Opera, Palm Beach Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, The Glimmerglass Festival and Des Moines Metro Opera.
Mr. Conyers has 15 years of teaching and community engagement experience, giving masterclasses and seminars at several universities and organizations across the United States and abroad. Active in the community, Joshua is a member of the Young Professionals Advisory Board of the Newark Boys Chorus School. As a board member, his obligations include fundraising, performing benefit concerts, and mentoring many of these underserved young men of color who find their paths through music. Previously, Mr. Conyers was a voice teacher at New England Conservatory Preparatory School and Continuing Education in Boston, MA. He received his BM in Vocal Performance and Professional Certificate from the UNC School of the Arts/A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute and his MM in Vocal Performance from Indiana University. Learn more online.
“I’m incredibly honored to join the distinguished faculty of the Eastman School of Music,” says Conyers. “Having the opportunity to teach and cultivate first-class young musicians at Eastman is a dream come true. I look forward to serving the Eastman and Rochester community to the best of my abilities.”
Kiera Duffy has performed as a soloist with many of the world’s preeminent classical music organizations, including the Berlin Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, London Symphony, Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Ungaku-Juku Japan, as well as the Aldeburgh Festival, Ojai Festival of Contemporary Music, Wigmore Hall, Mostly Mozart Lincoln Center and Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.
She has performed an extraordinarily wide range of repertoire and is an especially sought-after interpreter of the work of the European modernists as well as contemporary composers like Caroline Shaw, Mohammed Fairouz, Michael Hersch, Jake Heggie, Grace Evangeline Mason, Rene Orth, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Layale Chaker, Philip Glass, Unsuk Chin, George Lewis and Missy Mazzoli, among many others.
Of her appointment, Duffy shares, “To work alongside Eastman’s distinguished roster of performance faculty, and to have the opportunity to nurture this next generation of singing artists is truly a privilege.” She continues, “I am humbled and elated to be invited to join this dynamic cultural community.”
For the last seven years Duffy has been Professor of the Practice at the University of Notre Dame, where she has served as the Coordinator of Undergraduate Voice Studies and Creative Producer of Opera ND for the Department of Music, and voice faculty for the Graduate Program of Sacred Music. Duffy’s research interests include Evidence-Based Vocal Pedagogy; Cognition and Motor Learning Theory; Modern and Contemporary Repertoire and Performance Practice; Interdisciplinarity in Western Classical Performance; Fostering Inclusion in the Classical Canon; and Mindfulness Practices for the Performing Musician.
Pianist, vocal coach and conductor Brock Tjosvold ’22E (DMA) is coming to Eastman from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam, where he has been the Music Director of the award-winning Crane Opera Ensemble. During his time there, he has led workshops for the finals of the Domenic J. Pellicciotti Opera Composition Prize. As a student at Eastman, Brock won the Ann C. Fehn Memorial Award as first-prize pianist in the 2021 Jessie Kneisel Lieder Competition. He has performed with the Grand Teton Music Festival, Albany Symphony, New World Symphony, Battle Creek Symphony, Finger Lakes Opera and The Art Song Preservation Society of New York, and has performed at Carnegie Hall with clarinetist Amy Humberd. Brock has appeared as soloist with the National Repertory Orchestra and has attended the Aspen Music Festival and Music Academy of the West with full fellowships. He previously attended Indiana University, the University of Michigan and the University of Wyoming.
Tjosvold says, “I learned so much during my time as an Eastman student and I’m thrilled to be returning as a faculty member. Being a part of this vibrant community is truly a dream come true.”
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About Eastman School of Music:
The Eastman School of Music was founded in 1921 by industrialist and philanthropist George Eastman (1854-1932), founder of Eastman Kodak Company. It was the first professional school of the University of Rochester. Mr. Eastman’s dream was that his school would provide a broad education in the liberal arts as well as superb musical training.
More than 900 students are enrolled in the Collegiate Division of the Eastman School of Music—about 500 undergraduates and 400 graduate students. They come from almost every state, and approximately 23 percent are from other countries. They are taught by a faculty comprised of more than 130 highly regarded performers, composers, conductors, scholars, and educators. They are Pulitzer Prize winners, Grammy winners, Emmy winners, Guggenheim fellows, ASCAP Award recipients, published authors, recording artists, and acclaimed musicians who have performed in the world’s greatest concert halls. Each year, Eastman’s students, faculty members, and guest artists present more than 900 concerts to the Rochester community. Additionally, more than 1,700 members of the Rochester community, from young children through senior citizens, are enrolled in the Eastman Community Music School.
About the University of Rochester:
The University of Rochester is one of the nation’s leading private research universities, one of only 62-member institutions in the Association of American Universities. Located in Rochester, N.Y., the University gives undergraduates exceptional opportunities for interdisciplinary study and close collaboration with faculty through its unique cluster-based curriculum. Its College, School of Arts and Sciences, and Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences are complemented by the Eastman School of Music, Simon School of Business, Warner School of Education, Laboratory for Laser Energetics, School of Medicine and Dentistry, School of Nursing, Eastman Institute for Oral Health, and the Memorial Art Gallery.