Lawrence Abernathy is a choral artist based in greater-Kansas City where he is in demand as a conductor, clinician and tenor. He is currently the Director of Choirs at Washburn University where he leads the University Choir, University Singers and teaches classes in conducting and rehearsal techniques, diction, and vocal pedagogy.
Recognized for his engaging and dynamic conducting style, Lawrence is noted as a versatile musician and is comfortable in a wide range of styles and periods. Recent conducting engagements include performances of Haydn’s Missa in Angustiis, Luis Advis’ Cantata Popular: Santa Maria del Iquique, The Hope of Loving by Jake Runestad and Bach’s BWV 22, Jesus nahm zu sich die Zwölfe with the Bloomington Bach Cantata Project. Lawrence made his international debut in 2017 with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir and Elora Singers, has appeared with the Vancouver Chamber Choir and in 2024 will lead a performance of Marianne Martinez’s Dixit Dominus in Paris with Mid America Productions. In addition, Lawrence was the Associate Director for Poulenc’s Gloria at Indiana University, and served as the Assistant Chorus Master for Puccini’s La Rondie, Rossini’s Il barbieri di Siviglia, and Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro produced by the IU Opera Ballet Theater.
Lawrence is a lifelong church musician and has served congregations in Texas, Indiana, South Carolina and Georgia. Before his appointment at Washburn, Lawrence was the Director of Music at A&M United Methodist Church in College Station, TX, Lawrence oversaw a vibrant music ministry consisting of multiple vocal and instrumental ensembles. Highlights of his time at A&M UMC include performances of the requiem’s of Gabriel Faure, and Howard Goodall, Vierne’s Messe solennelle, the Son of God Mass by James Whitbourn and the Christmas portion of Handel’s Messiah.
Lawrence holds a Masters of Music from the University of South Carolina, and has completed coursework towards the Doctor of Music at Indiana University.