Growing up without a television set, John Cockerill entertained himself and fostered a love of classical music by listening to his parents’ collection of old cassette tapes and LP records. He began piano lessons at an early age and the story goes that he never had to be told to practice, only when to stop. He now works as a freelance collaborative pianist and vocal coach, based out of Chicago. He holds a BM in piano performance from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, a MM in musicology from UNL, and a MM in collaborative piano from the University of Colorado-Boulder. He has served on the coaching staff at Des Moines Metro Opera, and he was the music director for the 2017 OPERA Iowa Educational Touring Troupe. He is also a company member of Chicago Fringe Opera, a storefront ensemble dedicated to presenting new and contemporary vocal works written in English. Recent opera credits include Turandot (Des Moines Metro Opera), Marìa de Buenos Aires (DMMO), As One (Chicago Fringe Opera), and The Barber of Seville (OPERA Iowa). Additionally active in musical theatre, recent productions have included Violet, Bonnie & Clyde, First Lady Suite, Xanadu, and High Fidelity, all in Chicago. He was a featured pianist on the album recording of Ross Crean’s new opera, The Great God Pan (Navona Records, 2017), available on Spotify and Apple Music. When not practicing, he can be found on a nature walk, reading historical nonfiction, or in the kitchen, trying out a new recipe.