CCM faculty member Rocco Dal Vera.

In Memoriam: CCM Professor and Theatre Arts Division Head Rocco Dal Vera

It is with supreme sadness that we share news of the passing of Rocco Dal Vera, a cherished member of the CCM Family who most recently served as head of CCM’s Division of Theatre Arts, Production and Arts Administration (TAPAA).

Rocco died peacefully on Friday, Sept. 29, 2017, surrounded by close family and friends, after battling glioblastoma cancer. He was the loving husband to his wife of 27 years, Denise Mechelle Dal Vera, and devoted father to his daughter, Kendall Anne Dal Vera.  He is preceded in death by his father, Roger Dal Vera, and survived by his mother, Polly Dal Vera, and sister, Anne Dal Vera. Born July 10, 1956, he was 61 years old.

CCM TAPAA Division Head Rocco Dal Vera.

CCM faculty member Rocco Dal Vera.

Rocco was a world-renowned researcher, master teacher and pioneer of voice and speech training for theatrical and commercial film actors, voice-over specialists, public speakers and corporate leaders.

A faculty member in the Department of Acting (previously Drama) since 1998, Rocco became head of CCM’s TAPAA Division in June of 2015. In 2008, Rocco received UC’s George Barbour Award for Good Faculty-Student Relations. He was also on the faculties of UC’s College of Law, the Xavier Leadership Center (Williams College of Business) and Procter and Gamble’s clay street project.

Awarded the title of Distinguished Member by the Voice and Speech Trainers Association (VASTA), the highest honor given by the Association, Rocco was the founding editor of the journal Voice and Speech Review for VASTA, and edited the first three books of that series. He lectured internationally on vocal violence and the effects of emotion on the voice and was a Level 5 Master Teacher of the Alba Method for Emotions, having studied and taught the subject for over 20 years.

Rocco was the author and editor of six books, several of which have been translated extensively and received international acclaim, influencing the curricular design in several disciplines. His book, Voice: Onstage and Off (co-authored with Robert Barton), was nominated as the Best New Theatre Publication by the Association for Theatre in Higher Education and is in use by over 600 college and university theatre programs. His latest book, Acting in Musical Theatre: A Comprehensive Course, (co-authored with Joe Deer) is in its second edition. For three years Deer and Dal Vera had a monthly column, “Acting in Musical Theatre,” in Dramatics Magazine and were frequent contributors to the journal Teaching Theatre.

Before joining the faculty at UC, Rocco was head of the BFA Professional Actor and Musical Theatre Training Programs at Wright State University, taught at the National Theatre Conservatory, Willamette University, United States International University, served on the Advisory Board for the Relativity School, and was chair of the Voice and Speech Department at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. For 16 seasons, he was the resident vocal coach for the Tony Award-winning Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park and the Actors Theatre of Louisville. He was a resident artist at the Cincinnati Shakespeare Company and the Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati, and worked as a voice and speech coach at numerous theatres around the US including, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Human Race Theatre Company, the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Long Beach Civic Light Opera and the Los Angeles Theatre Center.

Prior to entering academic life, Rocco had a rich professional career onstage and in Hollywood. His voice can be heard on numerous commercials and over 500 films and television shows including L.A. Law, Hill Street Blues, THIRTYsomething, Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Gods Must Be Crazy. He was the co-host and assistant producer of the public television series, Healthward Bound: A Lifelong Journey, which won the prize for Best Series at the American Medical Association’s International Film Awards.

With his wife, Denise, and friend Annie Fitzpatrick, he founded the company IWA Strategies LLC, whose client list includes Cincinnati Bell, Procter and Gamble, clay street project and the Xavier Leadership Center. Their company’s mission is to teach “how to influence by inspiring and recognizing the genius in others and creating practical applications.” This mission demonstrates how Rocco married an active professional life with an inspirational philosophy that recognized others’ potential. Revered for a generosity of spirit and graceful eloquence, he will be remembered as not only the “smartest man in the room,” but also the kindest. His thoughtfulness, artistry and caring contributed to the achievement of countless artists, teachers and professionals worldwide. Rocco was considered a “teacher’s teacher,” an “actor’s coach,” and a tireless ally to the many students and colleagues he served alongside and led in a career that spanned four decades. Beyond his exceptional professional skill, Rocco will probably best be remembered for his generosity of spirit and profoundly supportive nature. No student, colleague or acquaintance was ever turned away from his office without receiving Rocco’s full attention and support.

Later in his life, Rocco became a crusader against Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS), and his daughter Kendall’s lifelong battle with the debilitating disease. In lieu of flowers, a fund has been established in Kendall’s name; you can learn more by visiting www.posthope.org/rocco/journal/214305/how-to-give-back-to-rocco.

Rocco was a member of Actors’ Equity Association, American Association of University Professors, SAG-AFTRA, National Association of Teachers of Singing, Musical Theatre Educators’ Alliance-International, Voice and Speech Trainers Association, Association for Theatre in Higher Education, Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists and the Voice Foundation.

A Memorial Service will be held in the Great Hall of UC’s Tangeman University Center at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 30.  More information about the memorial can be found at www.posthope.org/roccoProspective attendees are encouraged to RSVP at https://events.blackbirdrsvp.com/rocco-s-celebration-of-life.

Please join us in sending your thoughts or prayers and condolences to the entire Dal Vera family. Rocco was an inspiring force to all who knew him. He will be greatly missed.

CCM News
A snow-capped CCM Village.

CCM Welcomes Rebecca Bromels to Arts Administration Faculty

A familiar face within Cincinnati’s arts community will be joining the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music’s (CCM) highly regarded Department of Arts Administration this fall.

CCM Dean Peter Landgren has announced the appointment of Rebecca Bromels to the position of Assistant Professor of Arts Administration. Her appointment becomes effective in August of 2016.

Rebecca Bromels, incoming Assistant Professor of Arts Administration at CCM.

Rebecca Bromels, incoming Assistant Professor of Arts Administration at CCM.

Bromels currently serves as director of engagement of ArtsWave, the Greater Cincinnati region’s local arts agency and the nation’s largest community campaign for the arts. With the help of tens of thousands of donors, ArtsWave supports more than 100 arts and community organizations. These beneficiaries include CCM, which has been able to enhance its community engagement efforts through ArtsWave’s Community Partnership grants. In her position at ArtsWave, Bromels oversees volunteer programs and signature events including Macy’s Arts Sampler.

Having moved to Cincinnati in 1999 to pursue a directing career, Bromels discovered her love for arts administration during her 12-year tenure at Cincinnati Shakespeare Company. As managing director for eight seasons, she worked to broaden the company’s base of support and provide resources for its innovative productions of Shakespeare and the classics.

Bromels joined ArtsWave shortly after its evolutionary change to impact-based funding and was instrumental in developing the organization’s new messaging and brand identity as director of communications.

She has also directed plays for Cincinnati Shakespeare Company, the SERIALS project at Know Theatre of Cincinnati, New Edgecliff Theatre and St. Croix Festival Theatre in Wisconsin. In addition, she served as a guest lecturer in arts administration at Miami University and for the United Way BOLD board training program. In 2016, she will co-author a Corporate Arts Challenges Tool-Kit for Americans for the Arts.

Bromels holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre Performance from Texas Christian University. She was recognized in the “Forty Under 40” class of 2005 by the Cincinnati Business Courier. She lives with her husband and two children in St. Bernard.

In his announcement of the hire, Landgren commented, “In my initial discussions with Rebecca, it became clear that she was committed to partnering with our faculty to advance CCM’s already remarkable Arts Administration program to even greater prestige. I am confident that her extensive theatre background and strong interpersonal skills will be a boon to CCM students and faculty alike.”

Utilizing the combined resources of CCM and UC’s Carl H. Lindner College of Business, the Department of Arts Administration offers one of the few joint MA/MBA arts administration programs in the United States. The highly selective program boasts a 100% job placement rate for its past seven years of graduates.

Learn more about CCM Arts Administration by visiting ccm.uc.edu/artsadmin.

Learn more about CCM’s world-class faculty members by visiting ccm.uc.edu/about/villagenews/faculty.

CCM News Faculty Fanfare

CCM Productions Win Big at League of Cincinnati Theatres’ 2014 Awards Ceremony

League of Cincinnati TheatresWinners of the League of Cincinnati Theatres’ (LCT) 2013-14 Season Awards were announced on Monday night, with CCM faculty members, students and productions taking home a number of awards, including:

  • Best Musical (Tie): CCM’s Les Miserables (tied with Carnegie Theatre’s Chicago)
  • Choreography (Tie): Diane Lala and Patti James for CCM’s Singin’ in the Rain (tied with David Baum for Carnegie Theatre’s Chicago)
  • Music Direction: Steve Goers for CCM’s Les Miserables
  • Scenic Design: Mark Halpin for CCM’s Singin’ in the Rain
  • Ensemble in a Musical: CCM’s Les Miserables
  • Lead Actor in a Musical: Blaine Krauss in CCM’s Les Miserables
  • Featured Actor in a Musical: Matthew Paul Hill in CCM’s Les Miserables
  • Featured Actress in a Musical: Jenny Hickman in CCM’s Carrie

Faculty member Kelly Yurko also received a Special Contribution Award for her prosthetic design for Clifton Players’ production of The Whale. Congratulations to all of this year’s winners!

CCM News Faculty Fanfare Student Salutes

CCM Alumnus Andrew Hungerford Named Incoming Artistic Director of Cincinnati’s Know Theatre

CCM alumnus Andrew Hungerford.

CCM alumnus Andrew Hungerford.

CCM alumnus Andrew Hungerford (MFA ’05) was officially introduced as Know Theatre of Cincinnati’s incoming artistic director at a special meet-and-greet event last night (Feb. 12). Over the next few months, Hungerford will be working closely with Know Theatre’s current artistic director Eric Vosmeier to ensure a seamless transition.

A graduate of CCM’s Lighting Design and Technology program, Hungerford is also a stage director, playwright, actor, scenic designer and sound designer.

He has served as Know Theatre’s scenic and lighting designer for the past seven seasons and scenic and lighting designer for Cincinnati Shakespeare Company for the last four seasons. He also spent eight seasons as lighting designer for the Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati.

You can learn more about Hungerford’s new position courtesy of the Cincinnati Enquirer here and Cincinnati CityBeat here.

CCM Alumni Applause CCM News

Cincinnati Season Openers Feature the Talents of CCM Drama

CCM alumna Torie Wiggins in Cincinnati Shakespeare's production of 'To Kill a Mockingbird.'

CCM alumna Torie Wiggins in Cincinnati Shakespeare’s production of ‘To Kill a Mockingbird.’

This fall, visit any stage in Cincinnati to enjoy season opening theatre productions and you will have the chance to see the talents of current and former CCM Drama students!

CCM Alumni Applause Student Salutes