Dr. Rick Piersall

Dr. Rick Piersall
Music History

WPAC 133


Dr. Rick Piersall is Associate Professor of Music in Voice and Director of Opera at Abilene Christian University. He comes to ACU from the University of South Dakota where was Assistant Professor of Voice and Director of Opera. Dr. Piersall teaches the Music History, Opera History, and Vocal Literature classes and is directs the Opera Program.

Dr. Piersall is well known as an adjudicator, recitalist, and teacher of Master Classes. He has judged various competitions in Texas, Arkansas, Pennsylvania and given Master Classes across the Unites States. As a recitalist, Dr. Piersall has connected with audiences across the US. Before joining the faculty at USD, Dr. Piersall was an Assistant Professor of Voice and Opera at Houston Baptist University, Visiting Professor of Opera at Stephen F. Austin State University in Texas, and has taught courses at Abilene Christian University, Southern Methodist University, and Rice University as well as serving as Assistant Director/Producer for Temple University Opera Theater. Dr. Piersall completed his Doctoral Degree in Musicology at Rice University studying with Dr. Stephen King.

He has appeared in leading roles with the Des Moines Metro Opera, Longleaf Opera, El Paso Opera, Opera Fort Collins, Opera Iowa, Opera North, Amarillo Opera and the Abilene Opera Association. More recently, Dr. Piersall was invited to perform at the Center for Contemporary Opera Szeged National Theatre, Szeged, Hungary and Avignon, France. Among his roles are Mozart's Figaro, Reverend Olin Blitch in Susannah, the title character in The Boor by Argento, and Tony in the musical The Most Happy Fella. He has been regularly heard on the concert stage as well, in performances of Penderecki's Credo with the Houston Symphony, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with the Columbia chorale, Bach's Saint John Passion (Jesus) with the Houston Bach Society and as Baritone soloist in the San Antonio Symphony's Faure's Requiem. Reviewers have referred to Dr. Piersall's voice as "beautiful," "reminiscent of Fisher-Dieskau," "touchingly expressive;" and his acting performances as "comic genius," "sympathetic," and "Poignant."

  • Get More Info
    Get More Info

    Interested in music? Complete our online form to receive more information.

    Complete the form 

  • Visit Campus
    Visit Campus

    Satisfy your curiosity about what it means to live and learn at ACU!

    Schedule a visit

  • Apply to ACU
    Apply to ACU

    Apply Online

    Learn more about our application and admissions process.

  • Audition

    Applying to be a Music major? Wanting to join one of ACU's vocal or instrumental ensembles?

    Sign-up for an Audition

Connect with Music
Connect with Band
Connect with Orchestra
Connect with Choir
Connect with Opera