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Eric Rutherford

Music Instructor

  • 620-332-5436

John Eric Rutherford, tenor, is currently the music professor at Independence Community College. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Otterbein College, a master ’s degree from Northwestern University, and is a current doctoral degree student at the University of Washington. He has over 10 years of teaching experience in vocal and instrumental music at all levels. Eric is also an avid performer. He has appeared in Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte as Ferrando, Smetana’s The Bartered Bride as Jenik, Piccinni’s La Bouna Figliuola as Il Marchese, and Britten’s Midsummer Nights Dream as Lysander. His concert works include performances of Schubert’s Mass in G, Bach’s 21st Cantata, Rossini’s Stabat Mater, Vivaldi’s Dixit Dominus, Mozart’s C Minor Mass, and Handel’s Joshua. Eric has experience in numerous operatic scenes and also sung in several master classes, including a class with Renee Fleming in 2008.  He has also been a featured soloist in many concerts and performances at a variety of venues including Door County Music Festival, Puget Sound Opera, Piccini Theatre in Bari Italy, Seattle Opera, Elmhurst Symphony, Columbus Opera Theatre.

Doctor of Music, University of Washington A.B.D. 06/2013
Certificate of Performance, Northwestern University 2008
Master of Music, Northwestern University 2007
Bachelor of Music Education, Otterbein University 2001
Teaching and Employment  Experience:
Assistant Professor of Music, Fine Arts Division Chair, Independence Community College,
Independence, KS, August 2010-Present

Undergraduate courses taught:
MUE 1021, MUE 2021: Chorale  (A non-audition based choir)
MUE 1141, MUE 2141: Chamber Singers (An Audition based chamber choir)
MUE 1121, MUE 2121: Private Voice Lessons
MUE 1112: Theory I
MUE 1113: Theory II
MUE 1142:  Sight Singing and Ear Training I
MUE 1152:  Sight Singing and Ear Training II
MUE 1303:  Music Appreciation
MUE 1303:  Music Appreciation On-line
MUE 1042, MUE 2042:  Private Instrument Lessons
MUE 1211, MUE 2211:  College Band
Other Academic responsibilities and improvements at Independence Community College

Chair of the Fine Arts Department
Worked with four year colleges in Kansas to align transfer credits
Served on the Technology committee
Served on Academic council
Organized and executed choir tours to Chicago, IL and around Kansas
Directed musicals: Once Upon a Mattress, School House Rock, Disney Music Review, Little Shop of Horrors
Planned and prepared choir, band, and voice recitals
Sang for faculty recitals on campus
Actively involved in community musicals
Actively recruited in high schools and college fairs
Increased enrollment by over 200% in music classes
Increased music major graduation rates
Updated instructional equipment for music department
Prepared students for Sophomore recital
Developed music web site
Graduate Assistant,  University of Washington, Seattle, WA 2008-2010           

Undergraduate Courses taught:
MUSAP 137-139: Class Instruction Voice
MUSAP 300: Private Instruction Voice

Additional responsibilities:
Administered all sight reading examinations for auditioning vocal students
Recruit for the non-major voice program
Planned and executed voice recitals
Held weekly studio class
Assistant Director, Section Leader, and Voice Teacher, Northwestern University, Evanston. Il 2005-2008                   

Undergraduate Courses taught

VOICE 110-0,210-0, 310-0

Assistant Director responsibilities:
Directed Northwestern’s Chapel Choir during performances, rehearsals, and sectionals
Served as the tenor section leader
Sang as a soloist
Director of choral Activities, Heath City Schools, Heath, OH 2002-2005

Planned and implemented choral rehearsals for several ensembles grade 7- 12
Served as Marching Band Director
Directed large musical productions such as The Music Man, Bye, Bye Birdie, and Once Upon a Mattress
Competed at several choral competition
Added additional  ensembles
Held concerts and awards banquets
Attended in-services, faculty meetings, school functions, and served on committees
Created and Coached Soccer Program at Heath City Schools
Participated in solo and ensemble coaching

General Music Educator, Groveport Madison Schools, Groveport, OH 2001-2002

Prepared preschool through 5th grade general music lessons
Directed 5th grade band program
Played piano accompaniment for concerts and daily classroom activities/rehearsals
Directed select choir and recorder ensemble which perform in the community and school functions
Selected, prepared, and presented musical theater productions and vocal concert
Collaborated with art and grade level teachers to present integrated lessons
Attended in-service and faculty meeting, and serve on building committee
Served on committee to write music curriculum to align with state standards and Core Knowledge Curriculum

Operatic Performance Experience:


Tebaldo,I Capuleti e i Montecchi, Puget Sound Opera,2012
Chorus, The Ring Cycle, Seattle Opera, 2010
Ferrando, Cosi Fan Tutte, Puget Sound Opera, 2010
Lenski, Eugene Onegin, University of Washington, 2009
Ferrando, Cosi Fan Tutte, Door County Music Festival, 2008
Nemorino, L’elisier D’amore, Northwestern University, 2008
Il Marchese, La Bouna Figliola, Bari Opera, Bari Italy, 2007
Lysander, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Northwestern University, 2007
Jenik, The Bartered Bride, Northwestern University, 2007
Il Marchese, La Bouna Figliola, Northwestern University, 2006
Ferrando, Cosi Fan Tutte, Northwestern University, 2006 

Solo work in Oratorio:
Northwestern University:  Rossini’s Stabat Mater, Handel’s Joshua and Messiah, Mozart’s c Minor Mass, Schubert’s Mass in G, Vivaldi’ Dixit Dominus, Bach Cantata’s 21
Elmhurst Symphony Orchestra:  Beethoven’s 9th Symphony

Memberships, Awards, and Distinctions:
Currently studying with Jane Eaglen
Master classes with Renée Flemming, John Hoomes, Sherill Milnes, and Diana Soviero
Member of Kansas Music Educator’s Association and Music Educator’s National Conference
Member of American Choral Director’s Associations
First Place in Evanston Fine Arts Society Vocal Competition
Finalist in Opera Columbus Vocal Competition
Member of Phi Eta Sigma, Academic Fraternity
Finalist in Irma Cooper Opera Columbus Vocal Competition                                            
Finalist Bel Canto Milwaukee Competition

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Office Location

Fine Arts