Melody Rich, D.M.A.


Soprano Melody Rich joined the Hardin-Simmons University School of Music in 2008. Prior to joining the HSU faculty, she taught at the University of Texas at San Antonio for eight years and the University of the Incarnate Word for five years.She earned the Bachelor of Music degree at the University of Texas at San Antonio where she studied voice with Linda Poetschke, and then both the Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees at the University of Texas at Austin where her teachers included former Metropolitan Opera soprano Gilda Cruz-Romo, Rose Taylor, and David Garvey (pianist for Leontyne Price). The success of her teaching is owed in large part to the shared knowledge of her great teachers who also include Herald Stark, Shirlee Emmons, and Joyce Farwell.

Rich’s entry appears in numerous editions of Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers, Who’s Who of American Women, Who’s Who in Fine Arts Higher Education, Who’s Who in America, and Who’s Who in the World. She is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), Pi Kappa Lambda Honor Society, Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, Alpha Chi National Honor Society, and a patroness in the Sigma Alpha Iota International Music Fraternity.

Rich is active as a singing performer in all genre of music. Recently, she sang the role of Zerlina in Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni produced by the Abilene Opera Association. She received extensive training in the Austin Lyric Opera Young Artist Program, a program designed to launch promising singers into the opera world upon completion.

In addition to opera, Rich has concertized extensively with numerous classical music ensembles, including the San Antonio Symphony, the Laredo Philharmonic, the San Antonio Choral Society, the Texas Chamber Consort, and has appeared in both CD and televised contemporary Christian releases produced by Good for the Soul Music.

She has graced the European stage singing under the batons of Cornelius Eberhardt and Heiko Mathias in Graz, Austria. A consummate recitalist, she and her pianist Kristin Roach have been featured artist presenters in the Music at St. Marks (San Antonio) Series and in the Artist Series of the Texoma Region National Association of Teachers of Singing Conference.

In Abilene, she has been heard as a featured soloist in the Brahm’s Requiem guest conducted by Don Neuen, Rossini’s Stabat Mater with the Abilene Classical Chorus, and the Mozart Requiem and Poulenc Gloria with the Hardin-Simmons University ensembles, as well as numerous chamber concerts collaborations and solo cameos. Equally comfortable as a choral conductor, she has served as the interim choir director at First Central Presbyterian Church in Abilene, the associate minister of music at Christ Episcopal Church in San Antonio, and as the assistant conductor of the San Antonio Choral Society. While at the University of Texas at San Antonio, she was the conductor of the University Chorus (2005-08) and the UTSA Women’s Choir (2008).

Rich’s students have appeared as soloists in academic, professional, and operatic venues and have enjoyed success at numerous singing competitions.

Degrees Earned

  • Bachelor of Music, Voice Performance, University of Texas at San Antonio, 1988
  • Master of Music, Applied Voice, University of Texas at Austin, 1994
  • Doctor of Musical Arts, Applied Voice, University of Texas at Austin, 2003
  • A Princeton Review Best Western College
  • Council for Christian Colleges & Universities  
  • Center for Student Opportunity: Promoting a College-Bound Culture
  • US News Best Colleges
  • Military Friendly
  • college_of_christian_distinction_badge20172018
  • College Choice Best Christian Colleges and University
  • University and College Accountability Network