Education and outreach are an important part of the mission of Choral Artists of Sarasota. In addition to open rehearsals, an apprentice program for high school students, and Coffee and Concert Insights, each year we award the Barbara Diles Scholarship to a rising young singer.

Barbara Diles 1938-2015

Barbara’s life was infused with music. An accomplished violinist and trained vocalist, she was involved with choral groups, symphony orchestras, and opera organizations as a performer, administrator, volunteer, and board member. In Detroit, she was an original member of the Kenneth Jewell Choir, sang with the Rackham Choir, as a soloist at Kirk In The Hills Presbyterian Church Choir, many other local church choirs, and was on the board of The Opera Organization. Her orchestral management affiliations were with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra and the Birmingham/Bloomfield Symphony Orchestra. Consider omitting highlighted section.

When Barbara retired to Sarasota in 2013, she continued to sing with the Saint Boniface Episcopal Church choir and with the Sacra Musica Cantorum and with Gloria Musicae Choral group then became a board member focusing on development.
She was a bright spot wherever she went, bringing people together with a common love of music. To honor Barbara’s deep commitment to education, each year Choral Artists awards an apprentice singer a scholarship to be used to further their music education.

2019 Barbara Diles Apprentice Scholarship Recipient

scholarship-2019-teia-watsonTeia Watson is a recent graduate from State College of Florida where she began her studies of Vocal performance under the tutelage of Melodie Dickerson. Teia was a member of the chamber choir, concert choir, musical theater and also a music ambassador. Teia has won countless awards at NATs but recently placed 2nd in Advanced musical theater women over 25 at the South Eastern Regionals held at FSU. Teia was chosen to represent SCF in Winter symposium’s music vocal competition for the year 2017 and 2018. Teia has starred in several musical productions at SCF. Her most notable roles were Asaka in Once on this Island and Aunt Eller in Oklahoma. Teia just finished her second year as an alto apprentice for the Choral Artists of Sarasota. Teia is now embarking on a new journey at the University of Tampa. She is continuing her studies toward a BM in vocal performance under the instruction of Dr. Hein Jung as well as a BA in psychology.

2018 Barbara Diles Apprentice Scholarship Recipient

Katherine Herbert, soprano, has two main passions: opera and animals. She was recently admitted to the Juilliard School and won again the Second Prize at the Schmidt Youth Vocal in the 2018 competition in Florida. In 2017, Katherine won the Suncoast Music Scholarship for 11th grade. Katherine studied at the Schmidt Vocal Institute in summer of 2017 and also has studied at Westminster College in Princeton, N.J. for two summers. Katherine is active in the Sarasota Youth Opera (2009-2018), singing world premieres of princess roles in Little Nemo in Slumberland and Rootbaga County. Katherine sang at the 2017 Sarasota Festival of Vocal Arts. Katherine is a senior at Booker High School where she is President of the National Honor Society.

2017 Barbara Diles Apprentice Scholarship Recipient

Sophia Masterson