The fall semester brings new expert faculty to West Chester University’s Wells School of Music.

Nicholas ProvenzaleNicholas Provenzale, who also serves as Assistant Professor of Voice and Opera, has been appointed in a new role as Jonathan RagoneseDirector of WCU Opera Theatre, and Jonathan Ragonese, who has been a member of the saxophone faculty for three years, has replaced Marc Jacoby as the new Director of Jazz Studies.

Christopher Hanning, Dean of the Wells School of Music says, “One of the Wells School of Music’s pride points is our expert faculty, many of whom are world-class performers as well as teachers. I am excited for Nicholas and Jonathan to share their love for music with our students, and I know that our students will benefit from their expertise and performing experience.”

As the Director of Opera Theatre, Provenzale will also direct two opera productions each year. Ragonese will direct the Criterions Jazz Ensemble, curate the annual jazz festival, and run the summer jazz camp as the new Director of Jazz Studies.

Provenzale says, “My goals are to make the Wells School of Music a destination for opera by attracting quality, talented students and giving them excellent training. I also want to attract local audiences to our opera productions and to make West Chester University a hub for opera in the region.”

Ragonese says, “Ensemble music-making is a passion of mine, and I look forward to directing and shaping the future of the acclaimed Criterions Jazz Ensemble. I also look forward to working with West Chester’s Music Education majors because I  believe that good teachers are one of the most important ways to positively effect music’s future.”

Provenzale has been teaching voice since 2013, most recently at the University of South Dakota, and has performed internationally. His full bio can be found here.

Ragonese moved to New York in 2007 to attend the Manhattan School of Music, where he received a Bachelors in Saxophone and a Masters in Composition. His first recording, Ardent Marigolds, was released in 2013, a duo with musical father Steve Rudolph. two men, singing, a duo album with saxophonist Tim Warfield, was released the summer of 2018. Ragonese’s full bio is found here.

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