Del'Shawn is an internationally award-winning baritone and composer, pianist, educator, author, and arts equity advocate. He has had solo debuts with symphonies and ensembles on national and international stages. Known for his vocal prowess, Del'Shawn has won awards such as the Chicago Musical Theatre Award, the American Prize in Voice, and the Metropolitan International Music Festival. Del’Shawn has performed an array of genres from gospel to opera. He was a top 6 finalist in the Michiana's Rising Star on PBS/WNIT in 2014, a third place prize winner in the International Musical Eisteddfod in Wales for the International Voice of Musical Theatre Competition, a finalist with the Sofia Session Orchestra’s Musical Theatre Competition in Bulgaria in 2017, and a finalist in the 2018 NATS Musical Theatre Competition held in NYC. In 2019, he had his Lincoln Center recital debut. He has performed with orchestras ranging from the South Bend Symphony to the National Accordion Symphony Orchestra. This past January he sang the role of George in the world premiere of Tim Henson-Hinck's and Kendra Preston Leonard's opera Water Rising with Arts Capacity and the Chattanooga Opera.
As composer, he has premiered new works within and outside of the U.S. premiered with numerous organizations and ensembles like the Julius Quartet, the Cincinnati Song Initiative, Really Spicy Opera, Babεl, and White Snake Projects to name a few. In the summer of 2022, Del’Shawn had four new art songs premiered at the Operation Opera Festival at Gonzaga University and a new art song premiered apart of the Source Song Festival under the tutelage of Libby Larsen and David Evan Thomas. Del'Shawn was one of ten black composers that was selected to participate in the inaugural NATS Composer Mentoring Program by Tom Cipullo and Lori Laitman, during which he was mentored by celebrated composer Juliana Hall. In March 2023, Del’Shawn had his first opera Cook Shack premiered with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis with librettist Samiya Bashir through their New Works Collective. This summer, Del'Shawn had a new composition "Bask" for string quartet and bassoon premiered at the Wyoming New Music Festival in Grand Teton. Recently, Del’Shawn was commissioned by Experiments in Opera to write a new opera with librettist Joanie Cunningham that has a workshop in November 2023 and world premiere in 2024 in New York City. He is currently working on a new musical titled, "I, Too, Sing America" that tells the stories of immigrants and their journey to America librettist and Broadway/opera director with Rajendra Maroon Maharaj.
As an educator and children’s book author, Del’Shawn passionately works with community arts organizations to ensure that children regardless of socio-economic background have access to the transformative power of the arts. He is a board member of Art Song Colorado (program and finance committee), Inside the Orchestra and serves on the board DEI committees of the South Bend Symphony Orchestra and Thompson Street Opera Company. Del’Shawn is the founder of Variations, a middle school music program that bridges the gap between the world of classical music and inner-city youth through a classical and hip-hop integrated curriculum. Turning their own stories to lyrics, the students work with symphony musicians, opera singers, and community composers to create a concert of new music that ends with a recording session He is also the youngest recipient of the South Bend Hometown Hero Award for his work in this space.
In addition to teaching music at the K-12 level and for non-profits, Del'Shawn has also created music programs for the Boys & Girls Club. He has served as the music director for Sacred Heart Parish, Zoar United Church of Christ, Hillcrest United Methodist, and guest directed at several other churches. Currently, he is the Worship Leader at Faith Presbyterian Church in Aurora, Colorado. He served as the musical director for Musical Mission Tour for 6 years and served as a Board Member. He has served as the musical director for several musical productions such as Caroline or Change, Annie, the Little Mermaid, Peter Pan, Shrek Jr., Into the Woods Jr. and many more.
In 2021, Del’Shawn released his children’s book “Do You Know What Makes a Man,” that was written to equip young boys with the knowledge they need to be socially and emotionally successful as men. Additionally, Del'Shawn is in the process of completing his next children's book that will be announced in the summer of 2024.
When not immersed in the world of music, Del’Shawn works at Guild Education. He holds a Bachelor’s in Psychology with pre-medicine coursework and a Spanish minor from Indiana University and a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Southern Indiana. He holds additional certifications in DEI, executive leadership, change management, and project management.
He is a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, the National Association for Music Education, the National Black MBA Association, and Americans for the Arts.