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Barbara Poulshock

Born into a musical family in southern California in 1926, Barbara Poulshock began her music studies at the age of eight. Her principal teachers included pianists George Liebling, Arthur Wynter Smith, Frances Bittner and David Vasquez. While in high school, she began her vocal studies with Gwendolyn Koldolfsky and Natalie Limonick at the University of Southern California. As a teenager, Poulshock became interested in musical composition, and was fortunate to study with composer Morris Hutchins Ruger. Within a year, she was awarded first place in a national music competition for a short choral work. 

Mrs. Poulshock has enjoyed a long career of teaching piano and voice, both institutionally and privately. She taught at the University of California at Long Beach, Cornish Institute in Seattle, and Orange Coast College. In 1974, she joined the voice faculty of Lutheran University, as a professor of voice and opera. 

During her years at PLU, Mrs. Poulshock’s interest in composing for voice and piano continued to flourish. She arranged two volumes of songs for young singers, to be performed for recitals and school voice competitions. The two volumes were published by Belwin in 1980. Poulshock also composed vocal arrangements Pacific Lutheran University’s world-renowned Choir of the West, including two sets of American folk songs in 1989 and 1991.

Though retiring from the PLU faculty in 1994, Barbara continues a full schedule of performing, teaching and composing. She has recently published three choral pieces for the Judy Herrington Series with Pavane, and has composed eleven original songs set to the poetry of Emily Dickinson. Mrs. Poulshock lives in the Pacific Northwest, where her music studio overlooks the majestic Columbia River.