William Billingham, senior coach

Programs Taught

William Billingham, pianist, has served as an assistant conductor at the Lyric Opera of Chicago since 1995. He has assisted in the preparation of more than one hundred productions, playing for rehearsals, coaching singers, conducting offstage musicians, as well as performing on the piano onstage, the organ in the loft, and the harpsichord in the pit. Mr. Billingham has also worked as a coach/accompanist for the Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Opera Theater, Florentine Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center, and Michigan Opera Theatre. Active as a chamber musician, he is a frequent collaborator with singers and instrumentalists. A native of Syracuse, New York, Mr. Billingham earned a Bachelor of Music in piano performance from Oberlin Conservatory, a Master of Music in piano performance from the Peabody Conservatory, and a Doctor of Musical Arts in accompanying from the University of Southern California, where he studied with Gwendolyn Koldofsky and Brooks Smith. After brief teaching tenures at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and Ithaca College, he began his opera career in Germany, working for five years as a répétiteur at opera houses in Heidelberg and Düsseldorf. He has recorded for Cedille Records and Hal Leonard.