Department of Fine Arts

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Dr. Jessica Ewell

Dr. Jessica Ewell

Associate Professor of Music

Dr. Jessica Ewell has performed at the Vatican, at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, and with orchestras in the United States, Europe, and South America. For her, artistry and scholarship are inseparable. Through music, she transforms philosophy into experience as she brings listeners into direct contact with the good, the true, and the beautiful. According to Patrick Dillon of Opera News, “The smilingly silvery voice is a pleasure in itself; but beyond that, she knows how to communicate: she savors the words and adjusts the vocal coloration to fit them, and she projects a contagious delight in conveying what they mean to her and what they meant to the composers who set them.”

Dr. Ewell is a winner of several international and national competitions, including first prize in the Barry Alexander International Vocal Competition, second prize in the Concorso Lirico Internazionale “Jole de Maria” and in the National Federation of Music Clubs Young Artist Competition, and third prize in the Concurso Internacional de Canto Lirico in Trujillo, Peru. She also won the University of Toledo’s Art Song Festival Competition and the Pittsburgh Concert Society’s Major Artist Auditions, for both of which she presented recitals as part of their concert seasons.

Dr. Ewell uses her classical training to synthesize elements of the Celtic folk tradition with elements of rock, jazz and early music. She performs and teaches in styles ranging from classical to contemporary. Music in these styles, as well as her own original compositions, form the foundation for Dr. Ewell’s concerts that combine music and narrative, drawing listeners into the world of the moment. “She starts to sing and it’s almost a spiritual event” (Albuquerque Journal).

Among her favorite performances, she has appeared as soloist with the Trujillo Symphony Orchestra in Trujillo, Peru under the direction of Carlos Aransay and in two concert series with the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Julien Benichou. Recently, she performed two recital programs at Lincoln Center’s Bruno Walter Auditorium and a series of concerts in New Orleans and Thibodaux, Louisiana.

Dr. Ewell has also appeared as soprano soloist with Concert Artists of Baltimore, with the New Mexico Philharmonic Orchestra, in a world premiere of Joseph Santo’s Vîsperas de la Santa Cruz, in Jordan Hall and King’s Chapel in Boston, at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, and with Maestro Angelo Zanin and eight cellos in performances of Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5 in various venues throughout Veneto, Italy. She also received the honor of singing for St. John Paul II during a private audience. Her opera roles include Violetta, the Queen of the Night, Amina, and Konstanze.

Jessica Ewell holds a doctorate in musical arts from The Catholic University of America, a master of music in vocal performance from the New England Conservatory of Music, and bachelors’ degrees in music and foreign languages from the University of New Mexico, where she graduated summa cum laude.

Dr. Ewell directs the voice track of the Sacred Music Program at the Franciscan University of Steubenville. Dr. Ewell has taught voice in the United States, Italy, and the United Kingdom. She has taught as a guest artist at the University of New Mexico, and has given lectures on topics in music history and philosophy at New England Conservatory and Franciscan University of Steubenville. Dr. Ewell’s research explores the ways in which music communicates philosophical and theological meaning. Highlights of this interdisciplinary dialogue include the Fall Conference of the Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture at the University of Notre Dame, where she presented her paper “Encountering Love through Beauty: Dietrich von Hildebrand and Ludwig van Beethoven on The Nature of Love,” and a conference sponsored by the Dietrich von Hildebrand Legacy Project in collaboration with the School of Philosophy of the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in Rome, where she presented her paper “Music: The Herald of Love.” To learn more, visit www.jessicavictoria.com, or follow her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/JVSongstress.

  • Doctorate in musical arts from The Catholic University of America.
  • Master of music in vocal performance from New England Conservatory of Music.
  • Bachelor’s degrees in music and foreign languages from the University of New Mexico.
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Faculty Achievements

Franciscan University Professor Wins Third Place in International Voice Competition

Franciscan University Professor Wins Third Place in International Voice CompetitionApril 09, 2018 STEUBENVILLE, OHIO—Franciscan University of Steubenville sacred music voice professor Dr. Jessica Ewell took third place in the prestigious Concurso Internacional de Canto Lirico voice competition held November 2-10 in Trujillo, Peru. Following preliminary rounds in which more than 150 singers competed from Korea,…

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