Bernhardt to Teach Opera Course for Encore Program

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Alumni Hero
Robert Bernhardt, conductor and artist-in-residence at Lee University, will lead one of Lee’s Encore classes focusing on the opera. The class, Opera…Don’t Be Afraid, will cater to students with little to no operatic or musical experience. Bernhardt asks that Encore students join his class with open ears, open minds and prepared to fall in love with opera’s many joys.

Encore is a program at Lee University that offers residents 60 years of age and older the opportunity to take university courses. Bernhardt’s class is one of several mini-courses designed specifically for the Encore program.

Bernhardt joined Lee’s School of Music in the fall of 2011 as an artist-in-residence and conductor of the Lee Symphony Orchestra.

Bernhardt has directed and conducted numerous symphonies, operas, musicals and ballets throughout the country. He made his Carnegie Hall debut in 1978 and has recorded for Vanguard, First Edition, Carlton Classics and RPO record labels.

Bernhardt also serves as Music Director Emeritus of the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera (CSO) and Principal Pops Conductor of the Louisville Orchestra. He was formerly the Music Director and Conductor for 19 seasons with the CSO and is the first to hold the title Emeritus.

Bernhardt has a love for all genres of music making him equally at home in symphonic, operatic, pops and educational performances. He is also nearing his 30th consecutive season with the Louisville Orchestra.

Bernhardt holds a master’s degree with honors from the University of Southern California School of Music where he studied with Daniel Lewis. He was also a summa cum laude graduate of Union College (New York) where he was an Academic All-American baseball player.

For more information about this or other Encore courses, contact or (423) 614-8598 or visit