Gene Rohrer

About: Gene Rohrer

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  • Role : Voice
  • Website :
  • Experience :
  • Specialist in : Vocal Accompanist, Accompanist for TBMS Community Chorus, and Creative Aging (opera appreciation)

Instrument you teach: I teach voice, coach and accompany singers/instrumentalists, and play for the monthly Adult Performance Hours, the TB Community Chorus, the Black Tie Voice Gala, many of the Voice Department Master Classes, and special events like (once) a professional whistler. Where else could I get experience like this?

Do you play any other instrument in your spare time? Spare time?

Education: MM from The Manhattan School of Music, NYC, NY; BA from Occidental College, Los Angeles, CA

Where are you from? Born, compliments of the USAF, in Deming, NM, passed through Roswell, NM (yes, at the time of the flying saucer incident–just saying), Omaha, NE, Denver, CO, Ft. Worth, TX, Shreveport, LA, and Upland, CA before starting high school.

Favorite age group to teach: Anyone who says “Oh, I get that.”

Favorite style of music to teach: I’ll tackle anything that actually IS music. . .

Favorite song: Excuse me, are you trying to get me bumped off? All the other songs will take out a contract…

Favorite piece of music: Ditto

Favorite food: M.F.K. Fisher said: “First we eat then we do everything else.”  Lemon bars are high on the list, but I don’t play favorites.

Favorite color: Every one except puce.

What’s your favorite musical memory? I was in Myrtle Beach, SC playing a concert with a baritone for Columbia Concerts, and the local press person turned to me at the end of her interview with him and asked: “Now, as the accompanist, just what is your function in tomorrow night’s concert?”  This is filed under ‘unanswerable questions.’

What do you like best about teaching music? It’s what I love to do.

Who is your favorite composer or musician? Also filed under ‘unanswerable questions.’

What was the first piece of music you ever learned? The first piece I wanted to learn was the Schubert Impromptu in A-flat Major–but I wasn’t there yet…

How many hours a day do you practice? Practice must be daily and of good quality. It can’t be measured in hours. It also depends on the demands of the instrument. But not a day can go by. A related story: someone once asked Josef Hofmann how he managed to play the piano so well with such small hands, and he said: “What makes you think I play the piano with my hands?”

How long have you been at TBMS? Since 2008.

Feel free to list any competitions, musical accomplishments, roles, performances of note, etc. As actor/singer/pianist, played the role of Galileo in ‘The Top Ten People of the Millennium Sing Their Favorite Schubert Lieder’ by Alec Duffy; sang tons of Gilbert & Sullivan with The Light Opera of Manhattan when it was NYC’s main source for those operettas; toured as pianist with baritones Saverio Barbieri (singing a duet-encore from Man of La Mancha!) and James Billings of the NYCO (ask me for the 2nd story about Myrtle Beach), and the Festival Of Song Quartet (playing all 4-hands of Brahms’ ‘Liebeslieder’); sang with The Gregg Smith Singers and recorded a Christmas album in the dead of Summer with the Texas Handbell Choir–with Gregg writing the arrangements out each night before the recording sessions!  Living and teaching in NYC is a breeze after that.

Fun fact: Not so much a fact as a question for you: What philosopher said, “Without music, life would be a mistake?” He was right.