It has been rumored that in Shelley Philibosian Waite’s family, the children were auditioned before they were born. Shelley’s parents met in a professional opera company in New York City and required her to study voice, piano, and violin beginning in elementary school and continuing into college. Following in the footsteps of her first voice teacher, her mother, Shelley earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the Eastman School of Music as did her husband Phil and sister Nicole. She has received competition awards from San Francisco Opera, Seattle Civic Opera, and Northwest Young Artist Series.
Critics have called her an artist who embodies sensitivity, stylistic mastery, and warmth of tone, as well as positively incandescent. Shelley Waite is equally adept in all genres of music from opera and oratorio to jazz and has become a favorite of audiences, conductors and critics throughout the United States, and in Europe and Asia. Most recently, her performance have included singing with Christopher Wheeldon Dance Company and Washington Ballet. Shelley’s solo performances have included numerous appearances at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts with such conductors as Richard Westenburg, Sir Neville Mariner, J. Reilly Lewis, Donald McCullough, Norman Scribner, and Paul Hill.
Furthermore, she was a featured soloist in concerts at the Washington Cathedral, plus the French and Austrian Embassies in Washington, DC, and made her Carnegie Hall debut singing the alto solos in Handel’s Messiah with Richard Westenburg and Musica Sacra. Tonight’s performance marks the second time she has appeared with LaCrosse Symphony having sung Libby Larson’s Songs from Letters in 2003.
Shelley has appeared with St. Louis Symphony, Dance Theatre of Harlem, Mostly Mozart Festival, Rochester Philharmonic, Richmond Symphony, The Paul Hill Chorale, Washington Choral Arts Society, Baltimore Choral Arts Society, Washington Singers, Washington Bach Consort, Cathedral Choral Society, Santa Fe Desert Chorale, El Paso Pro Musica, & Bowling Green Philharmonic. She is a featured soloist on To Hope, A Celebration! (a Telarc recording with the Dave Brubeck quartet) and Russia (a Centaur recording with the Paul Hill Chorale).
Ms. Waite lives in the Washington DC area with her husband Phillip who is a conductor with the United States Air Force.