Directors and Coaches

Dr. Chris Ludwa, Artistic Director; Conductor – Festival Orchestra, Choir and Musical

(231) 225-8877 •

Newly named Assistant Professor of Music at Kalamazoo College and Artistic Director of the Kalamazoo Bach Festival, Chris has served as Artistic Director of Bay View Music Festival since 2007. Prior to his appointment in Kalamazoo, he served as Director of Performing Arts and Ensembles for Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, OH before accepting the position of Music Director for The Federated Church from 2014-2017. He also served for 10 years as Artistic Director of Encore Vocal Arts in Indianapolis, Conductor of Bloomington Pops and Bloomington Symphony, and is founder of Kaleidosong, a professional vocal sextet.

Sarah Stone, Stage Director (S.O.A.R.S.)

A founding member of the S.O.A.R.S. program, Sarah Stone returns for her fifth season at the Bay View Music Festival. Mainstage credits include Titanic, Falstaff, and Così fan tutte. The Petoskey News Review states her work is “fast paced, full of action, tightly as well as imaginatively her typical style”, and “It doesn’t get any better than this!”. Stone currently serves as Chair of Fine Arts at the Kentucky Country Day School in Louisville, KY.

Gene Roberts, Stage Director

Gene Roberts is the Director of Opera Theatre at MSU Denver. He holds a B.M. in vocal performance from the St. Louis Conservatory of Music, where he also studied stage direction, and a M.M. in vocal performance from the University of Houston.

After graduate school, Gene followed an apprenticeship at Des Moines Metro Opera by accepting an engagement in Basel, Switzerland to be part of the Swiss premier cast of Lloyd Webber's das Phantom der Oper. This production remains to date, the only dual language production of the show, given six times a week in German and twice in English. Phantom led to many other opportunities throughout Europe in stage and television, including starring as Beast in the German production of Disney's Beauty and the Beast (die Schone und das Biest), a role Roberts performed over 500 times. Altogether, throughout the U.S. and Europe, Roberts sang over 30 roles in musical theater including Tony in West Side Story and Snoopy in You're a Good Man Charlie Brown, and 20 roles in opera including Basilio in Le Nozze di Figaro, Normano in Lucia di Lammermoor and Bardolfo in Falstaff. His students have been seen in U.S. touring productions including Billy Elliot, European productions including Cabaret, Little Shop of Horrors and Miss Saigon, and on the West End in London - The King and I.

Roberts is a regular guest director of universities throughout the U.S. and spends part of each summer on the faculty of the Naked Voice Institute at Northwestern University's Bienen School of Music, where he is the opera scenes director and acting teacher. He directs opera and musical theatre productions throughout his native Colorado, where he lives with his wife Gwen and their three sons Jake, Mitchell and Jeremiah.

LaToya Lain, Musical Director

Applauded for her "wonderfully rich," "powerful," and "captivating" voice, American singer LaToya Lain, a native of New Orleans, Louisiana, studied voice at the University of Cincinnati - College Conservatory of Music, Florida State University, and the University of Nevada. She is also a graduate of Chautauqua Opera's Young Artist Program.

LaToya's most recent engagements include performances of Gershwin's Porgy and Bess at the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, Hamburgische Oper, and the Köln Philharmonie. She recently presented solo recitals at the American Church in Paris, the Dutch Reform Church in Harare, Zimbabwe, and the Reapertura de la Iglesia Santa Teresa in Cochabamba, Bolivia. She also presented recitals and master classes at Oberlin College & Conservatory of Music, the University of New Mexico, University of Delaware, Murray State University, and at SongFest in Los Angeles. She continues to sing opera, oratorio, and perform solo recitals throughout the United States, Europe, South America, and Africa. In June 2017, she made her Carnegie Hall debut as the soprano soloist in Ralph Vaughn William's Dona nobis pacem, under the baton of Maestra Nina Nash-Robertson. She has been a soloist in Mozart's Requiem, Vivaldi's Gloria, Verdi's Requiem, Handel's Messiah, Bach's Magnificat, and St. Matthew's Passion.

Ms. Lain's operatic roles include Countess Almaviva in Le Nozze di FigaroCarmen, Suzuki in Madame Butterfly, Polinesso in Ariodante, La Principessa in Suor Angelica, Baba in The Medium, and Ježibaba in Rusalka. She recently made her role debut as Brunhilde in Trilogy Opera's 2018 production of Wagner's Die Walküre under the baton of Maestro Julius P. Williams.

Dr. Lain currently serves on the voice faculty of Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, where she is the Chairperson of the Music Theatre Council. There, she has musically directed "42nd Street," "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," "Oklahoma!," "A Chorus Line," "Spring Awakening," and "The Marvelous Wonderettes." She has also musically directed "Evita" and "Pippin" at the Bay View Summer Music Festival in Bay View, Michigan.

Nick Gisonde, Stage Director and Fight Coordinator (SOARS)

Nick was the co-stage director and fight coordinator for last year’s SOARS Opera a la Carte Scenes Program. Nick has coordinated fights and stunts for film, theater and opera for over 25 years. He has been the resident fight coordinator for Bay View since 2001. Nick appeared in and was assistant fight choreographer for the 1998 Broadway Tony Award Winner A View from the Bridge, directed by Michael Mayer and starring Anthony LaPaglia and Allison Janney.

Katie Joachim, Stage Director 

Katie is a graduate of Bay View Youth Theatre, and is excited to be back for Alice in Wonderland Jr. this summer! She has worked under the tutelage of Theresa Harrington for four years, and has directed their productions of Peter Pan Jr. and Beauty and the Beast Jr. Katie has also been a part of multiple main stage productions in Bay View, including performing as the Mistress in Evita last summer. She is currently attending Hope College, and will be a sophomore in the fall.

Libor Ondras, Conductor

Dr. Ondras began his viola studies as a fellow at Moscow State Conservatory with Yuri Bashmet. He completed his M.M. and DMA degrees at the University of Houston. Ondras is the Music Director of Great Lakes Chamber Orchestra, Kent Philharmonic Orchestra, guest conductor for Slovak State Opera, and Director of Orchestras at GRCC. Frequent soloist and recitalist, he has performed with major orchestras in US, for the American Viola Society and International Viola D’Amore Society.

His research and scholarly writings were published in the Journal of American Viola Society.

Everett McCorvey, Director (American Spiritual Intensive)

Dr. Everett McCorvey is a tenor soloist, conductor, and professor of voice. He is the founder and music director of the American Spiritual Ensemble, the director and executive producer of University of Kentucky Opera Theatre, and president of Global Creative Connections, a production and management company for musical and theatrical events. Dr. McCorvey is also the artistic director of the National Chorale for the 2014-2015 season.

Mariah Boucher, Coach

Active as a chamber musician, and vocal coach, Mariah Boucher frequently performs in recitals featuring singers and instrumentalists, and has been a featured soloist with orchestras performing the concerti of Mendelssohn and Ravel. She has joined with chamber partners Dennis Carter, Lisa Raschiatore, and Jennifer Goltz to perform at the art space Trinosophes. She has worked closely with composers Michael Daugherty, Gabriela Lena Frank and Evan Chambers premiering and exploring new music. As an opera enthusiast, Mariah has performed and coached Puccini’s La Boheme, Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel, Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore and Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte.

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The Bay View Association is located just outside of Petoskey, Michigan on the shore of Little Traverse Bay.

1715 Encampment Ave
P.O. Box 583
Petoskey, MI 49770

Phone: 231-347-6225