Illinois Pioneers

Soprano Ollie Watts Davis

7:30 pm Thursday, Nov. 13, on WILL-TV
Ollie Watts David

Ollie Watts Davis

Ollie Watts Davis says that she didn’t seek music out … it found her, says host David Inge. Her college, West Virginia Institute of Technology, didn’t offer a course of study in voice. “But she had been singing ever since she was little,” he said. While visiting her college, long-time U of I faculty member William Warfield heard her sing and encouraged her to come to Urbana to study voice. She did, eventually earning her Doctor of Musical Arts degree. In the interview, the U of I voice professor talks about the women who were her mentors, her work with students, and singing as a spiritual act.

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