Randall Umstead

Randall Umstead

The Gordon and Sarah Herring Chair; Professor of Music

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Randall Umstead comes to Furman as the Herring Professor and Chair of the Department of Music after 15 years on the faculty of the Baylor University School of Music. Dr. Umstead spent the final four of those years having served as Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, after serving six years as Director of Vocal Studies. During his time at Baylor, he served as a full, voting faculty member on Baylor's Board of Regents and chair of the Faculty Senate.

Dr. Umstead also served two terms as governor of the Texoma Region of the National Association of Teachers of Singing. As such, he spent four years on the board of the association.

As a performer, Dr. Umstead was twice a fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center. He has performed as a soloist with Bach Society Houston, Johannesburg Festival Orchestra, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Flagstaff Symphony, Colorado Bach Ensemble, Cincinnati Baroque Orchestra, Catacoustic Consort, Richmond Symphony Orchestra, the Kwazulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Irving Symphony, and the Bach Society of Dayton.

Dr. Umstead's students have gone onto successful careers as musicians and educators, and they have been accepted into prestigious graduate programs, including the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Indiana University, the Yale University School of Music, and the University of Michigan.

Honors & Awards

  • Regent Honoris Causa, Baylor University Board of Regents, 2019-2021
  • Outstanding Faculty Member-Significant Contributions to Academic Community, Baylor University:2019-2020
  • Chair, Baylor University Faculty Senate, 2018-2019
  • International Vocal Competition ‘s-Hertogenbosch (Quarterfinalist)-2010
  • NATS Intern Program-2009


  • DMA, University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music
  • MM, University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music
  • BM, Oklahoma Baptist University