Davidson physics professor will sing in upcoming Opera Carolina production

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For most of his adult life, Davidson physics professor Dan Boye has struck a perfect chord that harmonizes his dual passions of singing and science, bringing ovationsfrom opera lovers and physics students alike.

Boye’s upcoming performance as Baron Douphol in Opera Carolina’s February production of La Traviata marks his 20-year anniversary and 27th mainstage role with the largest professional opera company in the Carolinas. The three performances at the Belk Theater, North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center are: Thurs., Feb. 3 – 7:30 p.m. / Sat., Feb. 5 – 8 p.m. / Sun., Feb. 6 – 2 p.m. For tickets, call 704.372.1000 or purchaseonline at www.operacarolina.org. Single ticket prices begin at $16.

The singing scientist, with a powerfully rich baritone voice, has also contributed greatly to Opera Carolina’s educational arts programming, logging some 10,000-plus miles taking his “The Science of Singing” curriculum and other programs to schools across the Carolinas. “Dr. Boye embodies a core facet of the Opera Carolina mission, which seeks to ensure that young people across our region learn about and have access to opera and the talented artists who are in our midst,” said James Meena, general director and principal conductor of Opera Carolina. “We’re fortunate that Dr. Boye is such a devoted member of our Opera family.”

While Boye had no formal musical training as a child other than piano lessons, his parents inspired an appreciation for music and the arts along with a thirst for scientific endeavors. In college, he got swept up in the performing arts as a choir member at Emory and Henry, and was permanently hooked following three summers at the esteemed Brevard Music Center. Music and singing continued to shape his life even as he pursued his Ph.D. in physics at the University of Georgia.

Since then, he’s worked tenaciously to weave together life as a respected professor, ardent performing artist and arts education proponent. At Davidson since 1989, his teaching career has been punctuated by nationally recognized scientific accomplishments along with praise for his popular musical technology class that teaches music appreciation from a scientific perspective to non-science majors. His performances in treasured and contemporary operas from La Boheme to Cold Sassy Tree earn kudos from opera- goers, while he remains very much in demand for regional concerts, fundraisers and other artistic productions.

Boye acknowledges that his combo music and science trek makes for a rigorous schedule but also notes that the two disciplines are quite complementary. “From what we know now about the brain, artists and scientists aren’t really that different. We both strive toward the goal of discovering new uniformities or lawful regularities,” he said in paraphrase of Hermann von Helmholtz (1878). “Each pursuit demands a practiced discipline and concentrated focus to achieve success.”

Boye credits his family and Davidson College for supporting his complex career as scientist and artist. “As a liberal arts school, Davidson values my artistic pursuits, and quite serendipitously, the music building is situated next door to the physics building! Most importantly, my wife Ann, and my children Ellie and Charlie, are my built-in fan base, encouraging me and attending as many performances as possible.”

So, whether the professor takes a bow from the stage or a lectern, his audiencewill have experienced an act of enduring passion.

About La Traviata and Opera Carolina
La Traviata, the timeless tale of a Parisian courtesan who is redeemed by true love and sacrifice, is one of the world’s most beloved operas. Giuseppe Verdi’s masterpiece remains a classic, retold and popularized through time – adapted for the silver screen in the classic Camille starring Greta Garbo, plus contemporary films like Pretty Woman and Moulin Rouge.

Founded in 1948 as the Charlotte Opera Association by a small group of volunteers, today Opera Carolina is the largest professional opera company in the Carolinas with an operating budget of over $2.5 million for the fiscal year 2011. The mission of Opera Carolina is to inspire the region’s diverse community through the presentation of Opera, Operetta, and Education & Outreach programs that elevate the quality of life in the Carolinas. Opera Carolina is a community resource with a commitment to artistic excellence and community service.

Opera Carolina is supported by individuals and corporations throughout the region. Opera Carolina is also supported, in part, with operating support from the Arts & Science Council. Additional support is provided by the North CarolinaArts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Opera Carolina is a member of OPERA America.
About Davidson College
Davidson is a highly selective independent liberal arts college for 1,900 students located 20 minutes north of Charlotte in Davidson, N.C. Since its establishment in 1837 by Presbyterians, the college has graduated 23 Rhodes Scholars and is consistently regarded as one of the top liberal arts colleges in the country. Through The Davidson Trust, the college became the first liberal arts institution in the nation to replace loans with grants in all financial aid packages, giving all students the opportunity to graduatedebt-free. Davidson competes in NCAA athletics at the Division I level, and a longstanding Honor Code is central to student life at the college.
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