Greenville violinists play concert with Bocelli, Chenoweth

Violinists Pamela Bath Kelly, right, Kirsten Swanson and Andrea Bath Moore, who played in a Feb. 9 concert with Andrea Bocelli, are all students of Greenville Suzuki Violin teacher Joanne Bath.

Three violinists who studied under pioneering Greenville Suzuki Violin teacher Joanne Bath were members of the orchestra that performed in a sold-out concert with renowned vocalists Andrea Bocelli and Kristin Chenoweth in Charlotte Feb. 9.

Violinists Pamela Bath Kelly (pictured above on the left) and Andrea Moore (pictured on the right), are the daughters of Bath and her husband, the late pianist Charles Bath. Kirsten Swanson (in center of photo) also was one of Bath's Suzuki Violin students. All three are graduates of Greenville's J.H. Rose High School.

Bocelli, an Italian singer who lost his eyesight at age 12, has sold over 80 million records worldwide and has had success as a crossover performer bringing classical music to the pop charts.

Guest performer Chenoweth is an American actress and a classically trained vocalist with credits in Broadway musical theater, film and television.

"The concert was part of a larger USA tour, but it was his 'Valentines Concert,' which was presented in only three cities (next stop was Miami)," Pamela said via email. "He had a star-studded line-up of guests, including Chenoweth; a 'hot' Pop violinist, Caroline Campbell; one of the opera world’s divas, Nadine Sierra; and two world-class dancers.

Bocelli, Chenoweth and the conductor rehearse with Opera Carolina orchestra in this photo taken by Pamela Kelly.

"The orchestra was billed as Opera Carolina and consisted of professional players from Charlotte and North Carolina," Pamela said. "This was the first time that my sister Andrea and I have performed together in all these years... so the concert was exceptionally memorable and a lot of fun in so many ways.

"We performed sets with Bocelli, sets with all the guests, and then Bocelli-guest star duos," she said,

"Highlights included an encore of 'The Prayer' with Chenoweth (which was originally recorded with Celine Dion); his famous Latin-inspired 'Besame Mucho' (Kiss Me A Lot); opera masterpiece 'Nessun Dorma' by Puccini; and his 'signature' 'Con Te Partiro' (Time to Say Goodbye)."

Pamela said she and her sister were excited to meet Chenoweth and have their picture taken with her. (In the photo above, Andrea is on the left, Chenoweth in the center and Pamela on the right.)

"She was inspiring particularly because it was obvious how much she loves music and singing and doing what she does!

"Of course Andrea Bocelli was incredible.

"What a mountain-top experience it was!"

There were 22,000 people at the sold-out concert.

Photos courtesy of Pamela Bath Kelly.

Jane Welborn Hudson, a native of Greenville, is a former staff writer for The Daily Reflector, where she was editor of Her... magazine and Greenville: Life in the East and several other niche publications. Email her at