Godwin-Gaspar wins lifetime achievement award

Published 3:00 am Thursday, January 3, 2019

Former Brundidge resident Carole Godwin-Gaspar has been honored with the National Association of Teachers of Singing’s Central Region Lifetime Achievement Award.

The prestigious award was presented to Gaspar at the NATS Conference at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville in Edwardsville, Illinois in appreciation for her dedication and contribution to the art of singing.

Godwin-Gaspar, Webster University (St. Louis, Missouri) Emerita Professor of Voice, has won many awards throughout her career.

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However, Godwin-Gaspar talents were first recognized and appreciated by the people in her hometown.

Although she was born in Enterprise, her parents, the late Robert and Mattie Lee Godwin, made their home in Brundidge where he was owner of Bob’s Feeds.

Godwin-Gaspar’s talent for music was recognize early, first as a piano student of Irene Gilmore and later as a voice student of Jean Barr, said her brother Michael Godwin

“Mother and Dad were aware of Carole’s talents and purchased a Mason and Hamlin grand piano for her,” Godwin said. “Her first public concert was played on that piano. It was first delivered to Salem Baptist Church for the concert and then moved to our home. It was reworked by Steinway in New York and is in Carole’s home in St. Louis.”

Godwin-Gaspar graduated from Pike County High School in 1956. She represented her hometown as Miss Brundidge and was also Miss National Peanut Festival. She was runner-up in the Miss Alabama pageant.

Godwin-Gaspar chose to continue her education at Baylor University and is a graduate of Baylor University and Washington University.

Following six months of study at the International Opera Studio in Zurich, Switzerland, Godwin-Gaspar performed with the Essen (Germany) Opera Company. She made her professional debut as Marcellina in “Fidelio.”

Since joining the Webster faculty in 1975, she has earned seven diplomas from conservatories in Salzburg, Nice and Geneva for studies in the poetry and music of the German lied and the French melodie.

Godwin-Gaspar has given numerous, highly acclaimed concerts in the St. Louis area and frequently collaborates with composers in premiering new works for solo voice and orchestra.

She founded and directed the Institute for Advanced Vocal Studies in Paris from 1990 through 2001. The institute is a summer program devoted to studies in French classical song and vocal chamber music for emerging young artists. The institute’s activities have continued in the United States.

Active as a teacher, adjudicator and music director in the United States and in Europe, Godwin-Gaspar’s students have received numerous awards. Many hold advanced graduate degrees and artist diplomas from outstanding schools of music. Her students form a veritable international community of professional performing artists and teachers.