Friday, Saturday and Sunday June 21, 22 and 23, 2019: Three FUNDRAISERS IN Three DAYS IN Three Cities

with Rod Dixon, tenor; Alfreda Burke, soprano; and Alvin Waddles, piano

Friday, June 21 – Give my Regards to Broadway 

St. Michael’s Parish Center, Remus, MI

Saturday, June 22 – At Night at the Opera

FSU University Center Ballroom, Big Rapids, MI

Sunday, June 23 – All-American Ice Cream Social

Trinity Lutheran Church, Reed City, MI

A Fundraising Summer celebration of making beautiful music to share with our West Michigan communities. 

Rodrick Dixon commands an amazing ability to interpret a song, tell a story and bring a tremendous amount of emotion to any stage, production or tv camera! Born and raised in his father’s church, he learned to imitate his parent’s ability to sing and begun piano studies under his father’s guidance. At the age of 12, he was accepted into the Brooklyn Boys Choir, he attended the High School of Music & Arts in Harlem, matriculated into Mannes College of Music to receive a BM and MM degree. In the summers during his college years he studied in Assisi, Italy and Fountainebleau, France. He began his operatic training at Lyric Opera Center for American Artists. After the program, he was casted in Hal Prince Production of Show Boat at the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago. The producers of Show Boat cast Mr. Dixon in Ragtime which opened in Toronto, Canada in 1996 and made its Broadway debut on January 18, 1998. Mr. Dixon joined the Chicago production of Ragtime in September of 1998. In 1998, boy choir and high school friend Victor Cook recommended Mr. Dixon to the production of Three Mo’ Tenors. As a member of the PBS group starring Victor Trent Cook and Thomas Young, he has appeared with Barbra Streisand, Aretha Franklin, Barry Manilow, The Three Irish Tenors and Whoopi Goldberg.

As a partner of Cook, Dixon and Young, he produced the PBS special Cook, Dixon and Young Volume 1, toured extensively throughout the US, appeared on CBS, ABC, NBC, “E” entertainment, PBS/Great Performances nationally and WGN. As a programming consultant to the Cincinnati Symphony for its Classical Roots series in 2011-12, Mr. Dixon secured iconic orchestrations from Quincy Jones and Marvin Winans. This series sold over 5,000 tickets at the Box Office.

Rodrick Dixon and his wife/business partner, Alfreda Burke, have appeared in the PBS Special Hallelujah Broadway filmed in Prague with Linda Eder and Anthony Kearns with the Prague Filharmonia. The two appeared with Michael Feinstein at the Rosemont Theater in Chicago; produced Songs of A Dream with the Auditorium Theatre; toured Italy; South Africa with Miss World/ Mandela delegation in 2017; performed Too Hot To Handel at the Detroit Opera house for 16 years; Auditorium Theatre in Chicago for 13 years; and Memphis debut in 2018.

Alfreda Burke’s vocal artistry has been described as “voluptuous, creamy and luxuriant” (Chicago Tribune). She has appeared in concert throughout North America and in Europe. Ms. Burke made her Carnegie and Orchestra Hall debuts in Strauss’ Elektra with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra led by Daniel Barenboim. Highlighted performances include the Chicago Symphony at Ravinia under Erich Kunzel, Cincinnati Pops Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Opera House/DSO/Rackham Choir, Prague Philharmonic, Umbria Music Festival (Italy), TodiMusicFest, Miss World 2012, 2014, 2016 (China, UK, US); Chief Nkosi Zwelivelile Mandela, Miss World Beauty With A Purpose & Rise Against Hunger events, Gala (S.Africa 2017); Holders Season Gala (Barbados), Lancaster Festival, Corrales Cultural Arts Council (New Mexico), Grant Park Music Festival, Millennium Park Gala, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Kennedy Center, Auditorium Theatre, Auditorium Theatre 125 Living the History, Orpheum Theatre Memphis, Chicago Opera Theater, Chorus Angelorum, Chicagoland Pops Orchestra, Siamsa na nGael and NATO Chicago Summit, among others. Ms. Burke filmed Prague PBS special, Hallelujah Broadway (Mind the Gap Films, Dublin, Ireland) and recorded it on EMI/Manhattan Records label (Czech National Symphony Orchestra Studios, Prague). She is honored to be a HistoryMaker and a permanent part of their collection at the Library of Congress.

Ms. Burke’s oratorio, opera, concert and musical theater engagements include the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts broadcast on WFMT-FM; Mozart Requiem, Mass in C Minor, Coronation Mass in C Major; Handel’s Messiah; Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Beethoven’s Mass in C; Poulenc Gloria; Schubert’s Mass in G; Mahler 2nd & 8th Symphonies; Strauss’ Elektra; Puccini’s Turandot (Liu); Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta; Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915; Menotti’s Amahl & the Night Visitors; Rutter Requiem; Vaughan Williams’ Dona Nobis Pacem; Boulez’s Le Visage Nuptial under baton of Pierre Boulez; Gershwin’s Porgy & Bess; Bernstein’s West Side Story; Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar (Mary Magdalene); Christianson & Anderson’s Too Hot to Handel; Kern’s Show Boat (Kennedy Center/National Tour, Auditorium Theatre with her son, Dean), directed by Harold Prince. A cycle of Paul Laurence Dunbar Songs was written for Ms. Burke by Dr. Edward Hart, College of Charleston (2015); and spiritual settings arranged for her by Belford Hernandez (2017). She was featured in Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Symphony Center Inaugural Festival and Radiothon. She sang for Francis Cardinal George, Cardinal Blase J. Cupich and the Office for Immigrant Affairs’ Keep Hope Alive Benefit.

Alfreda Burke’s vocal artistry has been described as “voluptuous, creamy and luxuriant” (Chicago Tribune). She has appeared in concert throughout North America and in Europe. Ms. Burke made her Carnegie and Orchestra Hall debuts in Strauss’ Elektra with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra led by Daniel Barenboim. Highlighted performances include the Chicago Symphony at Ravinia under Erich Kunzel, Cincinnati Pops Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Opera House/DSO/Rackham Choir, Prague Philharmonic, Umbria Music Festival (Italy), TodiMusicFest, Miss World 2012, 2014, 2016 (China, UK, US); Chief Nkosi Zwelivelile Mandela, Miss World Beauty With A Purpose & Rise Against Hunger events, Gala (S.Africa 2017); Holders Season Gala (Barbados), Lancaster Festival, Corrales Cultural Arts Council (New Mexico), Grant Park Music Festival, Millennium Park Gala, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Kennedy Center, Auditorium Theatre, Auditorium Theatre 125 Living the History, Orpheum Theatre Memphis, Chicago Opera Theater, Chorus Angelorum, Chicagoland Pops Orchestra, Siamsa na nGael and NATO Chicago Summit, among others. Ms. Burke filmed Prague PBS special, Hallelujah Broadway (Mind the Gap Films, Dublin, Ireland) and recorded it on EMI/Manhattan Records label (Czech National Symphony Orchestra Studios, Prague). She is honored to be a HistoryMaker and a permanent part of their collection at the Library of Congress.

Ms. Burke’s oratorio, opera, concert and musical theater engagements include the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts broadcast on WFMT-FM; Mozart Requiem, Mass in C Minor, Coronation Mass in C Major; Handel’s Messiah; Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Beethoven’s Mass in C; Poulenc Gloria; Schubert’s Mass in G; Mahler 2nd & 8th Symphonies; Strauss’ Elektra; Puccini’s Turandot (Liu); Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta; Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915; Menotti’s Amahl & the Night Visitors; Rutter Requiem; Vaughan Williams’ Dona Nobis Pacem; Boulez’s Le Visage Nuptial under baton of Pierre Boulez; Gershwin’s Porgy & Bess; Bernstein’s West Side Story; Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar (Mary Magdalene); Christianson & Anderson’s Too Hot to Handel; Kern’s Show Boat (Kennedy Center/National Tour, Auditorium Theatre with her son, Dean), directed by Harold Prince. A cycle of Paul Laurence Dunbar Songs was written for Ms. Burke by Dr. Edward Hart, College of Charleston (2015); and spiritual settings arranged for her by Belford Hernandez (2017). She was featured in Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Symphony Center Inaugural Festival and Radiothon. She sang for Francis Cardinal George, Cardinal Blase J. Cupich and the Office for Immigrant Affairs’ Keep Hope Alive Benefit.

2019 marks our eleventh year of collaboration with Detroit original Alvin Waddles. Experience Alvin’s amazing artistry as he joins Tuba Bach for this special event!

Pianist, singer, composer, and director Alvin Waddles began studying the piano at the age of eight in his hometown of Detroit, MI. He continued his studies at the Interlochen Arts Academy and the University Of Michigan School Of Music after which he returned to the Detroit area where he currently resides.   After returning home he immediately immersed himself in the rich musical culture of the city, benefiting from the diverse influences that would eventually shape his own unique style.

Mr. Waddles has worked in the Detroit and Ann Arbor Public Schools as well as the Music Ministries of several churches; among them, the historic New Bethel Baptist Church, Hartford Memorial Baptist and Hope United Methodist in Southfield, MI. where he has served as the Director of Music since 1995.

Mr. Waddles has delighted Detroit music lovers with performances in a variety of musical events including the Detroit International Jazz Festival and the Detroit Festival of the Arts. He is the featured piano soloist in annual productions of “Too Hot to Handel” in Detroit and Chicago and can frequently be heard performing his own Fats Waller Revue.

Mr. Waddles’ engagements as a soloist and featured artist have taken him to a variety of destinations including Barbados, Beijing, Paris, Barcelona and Ghana, West Africa. He has also traveled extensively as musical director/pianist for Cook, Dixon and Young (formerly of the Three Mo’ Tenors). He has been blessed to work with some of the world’s finest musicians including Robert Shaw, Margaret Hillis, Brazeal Dennard, Minister Thomas Whitfield, Aretha Franklin, Anita Baker, Placido Domingo, George Shirley, Marcus Belgrave, Jack Jones, Haley Westenra, Stephanie Mills and Tramaine Hawkins.

Ed Mallett

Edward Mallett is the founder, president and artistic director of Tuba Bach. Dr. Mallett is recognized internationally as a performer on the tuba and euphonium, performing as soloist and chamber musician throughout North America in venues ranging from major concert halls to pre-school classrooms.  He also holds the world record for the “Longest Solo Concert on the Tuba,” playing continuously for over 30 hours!  Along with his solo career, he frequently performs throughout Michigan with his wife, Adriana, as Tuba Tales, a literacy and music program developed by the Malletts for elementary age students. He is recognized as one of the world’s foremost authorities on the double bell euphonium, presenting seminars on the instrument at a variety of international events.

Mallett earned his undergraduate degree in music from Central Michigan University and graduate degrees in music from Michigan State University.  He taught for over ten years at college and universities in Michigan and North Carolina before returning to Michigan to pursue his performing and composing full time.  He happily lives in Big Rapids with Adriana, their sons Gordon and Noah, and neurotic dogs Dizzy, Charlie and Sunny.