Performer Bios

Amanda Jacobs is an accomplished composer and pianist specializing in art song and musical theater.. Her art song projects include award-winning musical settings of Shakespeare’s sonnets, Emily Dickinson’s poems, and Jane Austen’s prayers. Even her musical theater compositions are literary, including the musical Austen’s Pride, currently under a Dramatist Guild contract for Broadway, with a production anticipated within the next three years. She earned her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology, with research on the learning environments of the Arts. More information about Amanda can be found on her web site:

As did her mother and mentor, Shelley Waite earned her Bachelor of Music, Voice Performance, from Eastman School of Music. Ms. Waite’s career spans the United States and abroad, showcasing her talents in all musical genres from opera to jazz. Performing numerous times at the Kennedy Center, with noted conductors like Richard Westenburg, Sir Neville Mariner, J. Reilly Lewis, Donald McCullough, & Norman Scribner, critics have called her “positively incandescent”. At Carnegie Hall, with Musica Sacra, she sang Handel’s Messiah. Ms. Waite has appeared with the St. Louis Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, Richmond Symphony, Washington Choral Arts Society, Baltimore Choral Arts Society, Bach Consort, Cathedral Choral Society, amongst others. She is a soloist on To Hope! (with Dave Brubeck – Telarc) and Russia (Paul Hill Chorale – Centaur).

Elizabeth (Beth) Dolan, Professor of British literature, and Deputy Provost for Graduate Education at Lehigh University, specializes in Romantic-era women writers. She is author of Seeing Suffering in Women’s Literature of the Romantic Era (Routledge 2008); editor of Charlotte Smith’s children’s literature in Works of Charlotte Smith (gen. Ed. Stuart Curran, Pickering & Chatto, 2007); co-creator of The Charlotte Smith Story Map (with Gillian Andrews), co-editor of Anna’s Seward’s Life of Erasmus Darwin (with with Philip K. Wilson and Malcolm Dick, Brewin Books, 2010); and co-editor of the forthcoming essay collection Placing Charlotte Smith (with Jacqueline Labbe, Lehigh UP, 2018).