Name: Bridget Johnston
Major at ISU: BM Vocal Performance
Graduation Year: 2019
Hometown: Waukee, IA USA
Current Residence: Waukee, IA USA
What were you involved in during your time at ISU? Iowa State Singers, Opera Studio, Theatre department
What do you currently do for a living? Music Director for St Boniface Catholic Church in Waukee, teaching artist Pittsburgh Festival Opera
Can you share a particularly interesting or inspiring story that has occurred in your career? I was asked to go on as a lead role in a brand-new contemporary opera with 5 days notice that was being produced by a company in Pittsburgh. I auditioned in front of the composer and got the job on the spot, then spent the next few days in dress rehearsal. The encouragement to be fearless, the lessons in music theory, and the promotion of professionalism and stagecraft at Iowa State enabled me to pull it off. My professional debut in a brand-new city!
Are you involved in Music, Theatre, or the Performing Arts in any ways outside of your profession? Yes! I have done shows at the Playhouse and have done virtual operas and concerts.
Are there other ways you participate in your community and engage as a Citizen Artist? I serve as a cantor for my church, I give voice lessons to young students to help them find their own power in their instruments!
How did your time at ISU prepare you for your career? It prepared me to be well-rounded, be collaborative, and find unique avenues into my goals.
What was your favorite experience in music or theatre at ISU? The 2016 production of Cabaret during a tumultuous election year. The very definition of art as political analysis. Also, the 2019 production of Orpheus in the Underworld!
What was your favorite class while you were at ISU? Why? Opera Studio! I love the workshop environment.
How was your involvement in music and theatre beneficial in different parts of your life? It taught me collaboration, persistence, perseverance, humility, sportsmanship, improvisation, and compassion.
Any words of wisdom for current or prospective students? If it scares you, it means you're doing it right.
Is there anything else you would like to share? Many thanks especially to Brad Dell, Lord and Lady Sturm, Mary Creswell, Jodi Goble, Dr. Simonson, Chad Sonka and Dr. Rodde, for being especially impactful in my growth as a full-time artist. Thank you for your persistence, patience and wisdom.