Larry D. Smith
Professor of Voice
Larry D. Smith, lyric-baritone and Professor of Music, has been an applied voice teacher and ensemble director at The University of Southern Mississippi since 1984. In 1985 he founded the USM Carillon Handbell Choir, which continues to perform before international audiences. Dr. Smith is also Director of Music at The First Presbyterian Church of Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
Dr. Smith received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Mississippi and the D.M.A from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. An active member of both the National Association of Teachers of Singing and the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers, he has served as soloist, conductor, clinician and adjudicator both in the states and abroad. He is past chairman of the Mississippi chapter of AGEHR. Among the concert works in which he has performed as vocal soloist with the USM Symphony Orchestra are Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, Benjamin Britten’s Saint Nicolas, Britten’s War Requiem, Saint-Saens’ Christmas Oratorio, and Handel’s Messiah. Opera roles he has sung include Aeneas (Dido and Aeneas), Valentin (Faust), Tonio (I Pagliacci), Assan (The Consul), Masetto (Don Giovanni), Morales (Carmen) and Mr. Peachum (The Beggar’s Opera). Lighter roles include Leadville Johnny (The Unsinkable Molly Brown), King Hildebrand (Princess Ida), Pish-Tush (The Mikado), and King Melchior (Amahl and the Night Visitors). His voice and pedagogy teachers include Miklos Bencze, Dr. Frank Stovall, and Dr. James McKinney, along with European vocal coaches Horst Gunter, Benno Schollum, Mary Dibbern, Peggy Bouveret, and Evelyne Koch.
Under Dr. Smith’s direction, Carillon has rung concerts in 25 states and 11 foreign countries. Noteworthy performances include a joint concert in Puerto Rico with Campanas Universitarias of the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras; three concerts in Tokyo, Japan, as guests of the Kaetsu Educational Foundation; and featured concerts at conventions of AGEHR and MENC. Other concert venues include Great Britain, Bermuda, France, Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Scotland, the Czech Republic, and Austria—some in association with the European Handbell Festival which Dr. Smith founded in 2003 and continues to co-direct.