The Temple B’nai Israel presents the Susan and Barry Koh February Lecture Series. All performances will be held at Temple B’nai Israel, 7199 Tristan Dr., Easton, each Wednesday evening in February beginning at 7:30 PM.
On February 6, the guest is Jason McKinney, “A Jewish Voice Through the Centuries.”
Originally from Milwaukee WI, USA, Mr. McKinney graduated from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, where he studied voice with soprano Marilyn Taylor and tenor Glenn Siebert, conducting with Maestro James Allbritten, and composing with Kenneth Frazelle. Whilst in school Mr. McKinney was the recipient of the Helen Odom scholarship, the Music Dean’s Talent scholarship, and the Chancellor’s Grant for Excellence. Jason was the winner of the Civic Music Association of Milwaukee’s Harold Levin scholarship competition and was awarded the Judges Choice award at the Metropolitan Opera’s district competition. Jason has had the opportunity to premier new works by Kenneth Frazelle, Shelley Olson, Daniel Sonnenberg, Chandler Carter and Lawrence Dillon. Jason has to performed at such prestigious venues as The Kennedy Center, The White House, The Semper Opera House in Dresden Germany, The Hamburgische Staatsoper, The Festspielhaus in Baden-Baden, Germany, Opera Kommische in Berlin Germany, Teatro Massimo Bellini in Catania, Sicily, and The Theatre Carre in Amsterdam Netherlands.
Jason was educated in Judaica at the Hillel Academy in Fox Point, WI. There he was first introduced to Jewish music, and that exposure influenced his love of music spurring him to learn a musical instrument. As a member of a Boy Scout explorer post Jason learned to play the Albert System clarinet in the New Orleans style and eventually was invited to play with the prestigious Preservation Hall Jazz Band in the French quarter.
Mr. McKinney has performed with opera companies in the US and in Europe. Among his favorite roles are the title roles in Don Giovanni, and Le Nozze di Figaro and in the Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess. Other roles include Colline in La Boheme, Olin Blitch in Sussanah, Dr Grenville in La Traviata, and Ashby in Fanciulla del West.
Mr. McKinney has been featured with the North Carolina Symphony, and has performed to critical acclaim in Europe, Mexico the U.S. and Australia. Mr. McKinney has been the cantorial soloist in Spartanburg, SC for over 10 years, and a guest Soloist with several synagogues worldwide. Me McKinney composes Jewish liturgical music which he shears with Jewish communities throughout the US. Mr McKinney is a resident artist and section leader at Centenary United Methodist Church in Winston – Salem NC, and teaches voice privately. Mr. McKinney portrays Paul Robeson in plays, recitals, and operas. Other original commissioned work includes “Frederick-a Musical Narrative” which he debuted in Easton, Maryland.
Visit www.bnaiisraeleaston.org for more information.