Directors and Staff
Ryan Marsh, Director of Choirs CONTACT
Ryan Marsh is a native of Floyd Knobs, Indiana, (near Louisville, KY). He attended Floyd Central High School (a two-time Grammy Signature School and two-time National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence) to which he credits his love for choral music and public school music education.
Ryan attended the University of Louisville School of Music from 1997 to 2003 where he earned the Bachelor of Music Education degree in Choral Music, Piano and Voice, and Master of Music Performance in Choral Conducting. His primary choral conducting study was with Dr. Kent Hatteberg. While at UofL he sang in the Collegiate Chorale and Cardinal Singers. Mr. Marsh received National Board Certification in 2011. He has completed course work at the doctoral level at the University of Kentucky.
Prior to moving to Lexington to be the Choral Director at Lafayette in 2003, he was active in church music serving two churches in New Albany, Indiana. Ryan holds professional memberships to the American Choral Director’s Association (ACDA), Music Educator’s National Conference (MENC) and regularly attends state, regional, national and international conventions and seminars. Ryan has an interest in choral music on the international scene and has attended and sung in international choral competitions. He has also served as an adjudicator for Kentucky Music Educators Association (KMEA) contests and festivals on several occasions. Ryan is a staff member of the Kentucky Ambassadors of Music European program and represents the Central Kentucky Region. Ryan has served as District 7 All-State Chorus Chair, and most recently ended a two-year term as Kentucky Music Educator Association State Choral Division Chair in which he also served on the state board of directors, executive committee and festival commission.
Mr. Marsh is proud to direct the Lafayette Chorale and Madrigals and he also teaches AP Music Theory for the Lafayette School for Creative and Performing Arts (SCAPA) music majors. Mr. Marsh led Lafayette through the process of becoming a Nationally Recognized Grammy Signature School in 2005. Mr. Marsh also serves as the instructional leader for the performing arts department and serves as the Gifted and Talented Program Coordinator for the SCAPA Lafayette Magnet program. (Teaching Philosophy)
Laura Howard, Director, VOCAL INSTRUCTOR Contact
Laura Howard is a native of Mt. Sterling, KY where she graduated from Montgomery County High School. She credits her involvement in the music programs of the Montgomery County Public Schools with the beginnings of her musical passion and ultimately, her career.
Mrs. Howard is a graduate of Morehead State University where she completed both her undergraduate and graduate degrees. As an undergraduate, she received her Bachelor of Music Education degree as a piano major on the choral/vocal education track of study. She also received the Master of Music degree while studying music education and choral conducting. While completing her graduate degree, she studied choral conducting privately with Dr. Greg Detweiler. She also served as a graduate assistant for the choral music department at MSU. Mrs. Howard recently completed Level II training in the Kodaly philosophy of music literacy and education. She began her teaching career in 2002 at Southern Middle School in Fayette County where she was responsible for general music classes, grades 6-8, as well as the 6th, 7th and 8th grade choirs. She has also had a private piano and voice studio since 1996.
For many years, Mrs. Howard has served as an accompanist for various choirs, soloists (both vocal and instrumental), and musical productions. She also serves as a church musician both as a pianist as well as a vocalist.
Mrs. Howard is delighted to be a part of the SCAPA/Lafayette faculty! She conducts the Women’s Chorus and Advanced Women’s Choir as well as teaching SCAPA vocal majors, Musicianship III, and Beginning Keyboarding.
Joseph Wrightson is excited to be teaching at Lafayette High School this fall. He holds a degree in Music Education and is pursuing his Masters in Music Education from the University of Kentucky. He has taught music in Fayette County at the Elementary, Middle, and High School levels, and has worked as a Creative Media Designer and Outreach Coordinator with The Lexington Theatre Company. With “The Lex,” Joseph coordinates the Story Cycle program. Story Cycle empowers the next generation of storytellers to find and raise their voices through musical theatre songwriting. He is passionate about the arts in Lexington, and that passion has led him to create a bilingual arts education web series, illustrate a children’s book, and participate in his local community choirs.
At Lafayette, Mr. Wrightson teaches Tenor/Bass Chorus, Music Technology, and coaches SCAPA voice majors. He also works with Gifted and Talented students throughout the district in visual and performing arts.
Amanda Lynn Wells was born and raised in Pike County, KY where she stayed very active with her school band, chorus, speech and drama team, and her church youth group Crossroads. She attended Morehead State University and gained knowledge in both instrumental and vocal music and obtained a BM and MME. Before going into the teaching profession, Amanda performed professionally in musical theatre in California, North Carolina, and all around Kentucky. Amanda has worked as an elementary music teacher and choir director in New York City Public Schools, Morgan County Public Schools (KY), Rowan County (KY) at Rodburn and Clearfield Elementary Schools, and as a middle and high school choral director in Rowan County. Currenty, she is the vocal director and general music teacher at SCAPA at Bluegrass.
Amanda has completed Kodaly Levels I and II, and is actively involved in KOSA (KY Orff Schulwerk Association) and AOSA (American Orff Schulwerk Association). She has also taught in higher education at Morehead State University as an adjunct professor in the KCTM (KY Center for Traditional Music) in traditional voice and with the MSU Theater Department teaching musical theater voice and music directing their musical productions. Amanda is married to traditional musician and archivist, Jesse Wells, and they have a beautiful daughter, Maddie Rae.
LAURA NEVELS, Choir Manager CONTACT
Laura Nevels has served as the Lafayette Choir Manager since Fall 2021.
Dr. Wayne Gebb, voice
Katherine Olson, voice
Pam Bridges, piano
401 Reed Lane
Lexington, KY 40503
Choir Office 859 • 381 • 3492