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John Elson Williams

John Elson Williams


Originally from Raleigh, North Carolina, John Elson Williams is currently on faculty at the University of West Georgia where he is an instructor of voice and the music director of music theatre and opera theater. He has been the tenor soloist in Rachmaninoff’s Vespers with the Michael O’Neal Singers, Sesto in Mozart’s La clemenza di Tito, Sellum in Stravinsky’s Rakes Progress, and the witch in Humperdinck’s Handel and Gretel. Additionally, he has performed as tenor soloist for Handel’s Messiah and Saint-Saen’s Christmas Oratorio, as well as presented Bach’s Weihnachtsoratorium (Christmas Oratorio) with the North Carolina Symphony. Currently, he is the tenor soloist and cantor at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Atlanta.

 John’s students have regularly earned high marks in both the classical and music theatre categories in student auditions of NATS. While some of his former students currently excel at singing pop, gospel, R&B, music theater, and classical genres, other previous students have participated as apprentices at Horizon Theatre Company and Atlanta’s Black Nativity. John has music directed musicals and operas across the east coast. Credits include Aladdin, Cendrillon, Evil Dead, Die Fledermaus, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Godspell, Gospel at Colonus, Heathers, Little Women (musical), Meanwhile Back at Cinderella’s Songs for a New World, and Speed Dating Tonight. He was recently awarded for excellence in music direction from the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival for Songs for a New World. A future performance as music director at UWG is Twenty Four (opera).

John holds a PhD from the University of Iowa in Vocal Pedagogy where he studied with Ingo Titze and Eileen Finnegan, a Master of Music in Vocal Pedagogy and Performance from the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University where he studied with Stanley Cornett, and a Bachelor of Music with a minor in English from East Carolina University where he studied with Louise Toppin and Perry Smith. He is affiliated with the National Association of Teachers of Singing as well as Phi Mu Alpha, Sinfonia.

Professional Experience

  • Education

Interested in touring?

  • Yes

Hireable as

  • Music Director/Conductor (Not Pianist)
  • Vocal Director and/or Choral Prep
  • Music Assistant
  • Vocal Arranger
  • Class/Voice Lesson/Rehearsal Pianist
  • Voice teacher with roster of private students
  • Classroom music teacher at an educational institution

My Primary Instrument

  • Voice: tenor

My Instruments

  • Piano
  • Voice



Current HS, College, or Grad Student?

  • Yes


  • He/Him