She is a soprano and teacher who performed her first solo in church when she sang “Away in a Manger” at just four years old.
She has since appeared as a soloist and/or member with numerous ensembles and orchestras and performed throughout the United States. These include the Boston Handel & Haydn Society, New York’s Musica Sacre, the Philadelphia Orchestra (where she sang a memorable solo in Handel’s Messiah), the Pittsburgh Symphony and the Washington National Symphony led by conductors such as Riccardo Muti and Eugene Ormandy.
In 1975 she sang in the Pennsylvania Opera production of Don Giovanni and was a soloist on the album Jose Mauricio Nunes Garcia: Requiem, which was performed by the Morgan State College Choir and Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra. Between 1977 and 1984 she performed on works by Mozart, Wagner and Strauss with the Orchestral Society of Philadelphia. In 1978 she sang in a performance of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Reading Symphony Orchestra.
In 1983 she appeared in Macbeth in Concert along with the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Westminster Symphony Choir and performed with the same groups of singers and musicians in a 1985 production of Rigoletto.
She became a founder member of The Philadelphia Singers in 1972 who were led by her co-founder Michael Korn and she performed countless concerts with them and recorded albums such as the 1987 Gloria! Gloria! Her and her husband provided support for the Singers once she had retired and she was an emeritus on the Board of Directors. She was also a past president of Chorus America.
In the field of education she has been a teacher at Brandeis University, Bryn Mawr College, Drexel University and Haverford College and the Associate Choral Conductor of the Concert Choir of Rowan University’s Department of Music.
Michael Korn recordings
Adeste Fidelis (John Francis Wade/Frederick Oakley)
RCA 6559-2-RC (Gloria! Gloria!)
Soprano – Benita Valente
Concerto Soloists Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia
The Philadelphia Singers
Here’s Benita Valente accompanied by The Philadelphia Singers and the Concerto Soloists Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia in “O Holy Night” from Gloria! Gloria!…
- CD Liner Notes: Gloria! Gloria!