Instructors

Arts Academy

Soprano Dr. Lydia Beasley has a decade of teaching experience, including college-level private voice and classroom instruction at the University of Alabama, Mercyhurst University, Southern Virginia University, and Judson College. She believes that, through holistic lessons incorporating not only the basic concepts of vocal technique, but also strengthening musicianship skills, developing successful practice habits, cultivating background knowledge of the repertoire, and performance practice, students learn to produce a properly supported, aesthetically pleasing sound and perform repertoire with emotional connection and poise.

She is an active performer, and has appeared with the Peabody Opera Theatre, Emerald City Opera, The Figaro Project, Erie Opera Theatre, and the University of Alabama Opera Theatre in a variety of roles, such as Mimì in La bohème, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni and the Countess in Le nozze di Figaro. An experienced oratorio soloist, she has appeared in Alabama, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Italy in Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Vivaldi’s and Poulenc’s Gloria, Honegger’s King David, Haydn’s Creation and Lord Nelson Mass, Handel’s Messiah, Fauré’s Requiem, and Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610. Additionally, Lydia has conducted research on the life and works of Pauline Viardot with an emphasis on her operetta Le dernier sorcier. She holds a BM, summa cum laude, from Shenandoah Conservatory, an MM from Peabody Conservatory, and a DMA from the University of Alabama. She is a member of the National Opera Association and the National Association of Teachers of Singing.

IMAGO Dance Instructor, Kellie Burnett, was born in Jacksonville, Florida and began dancing at the age of three. After moving to Texas at the age of nine, she was accepted into the NorthEast School of the Arts (NESA) at Lee HS and graduated under the Dance Program in 2014. She has performed multiple times at the Spurs Halftime and has been a soloist in the NESA Senior Performance.

Kellie attended Belhaven University in Jackson, MS, originally pursuing a BFA in Dance. In the interest of moving back home, she transferred to UTSA and graduated in December of 2017 with a BA in Multidisciplinary Studies with a focus in Dance, Kinesiology, and Communications.

After realizing her love of pedagogy through her experience at IMAGO, Kellie became an Adjunct Professor of Dance at San Antonio College where she enjoys helping her students grow technically and artistically. Kellie has experience in various genres of dance including ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, lyrical, contemporary, modern, improvisation and is also certified in Progressing Ballet Technique. She hopes to inspire others to use their artistic gifts to glorify the Lord and worship His name with their God-given talents.

Dan McBain started drawing on the back of a church bulletin as a child (and a PK) in the Midwest. His family moved to Deep South Texas when he was in Junior High, at which time he took every art class he could get his hands on through public school. Dan is a graduate of University of Corpus Christi with a BA in Art specializing in painting. He coaches painters and teaches Beginning Drawing and Advanced Drawing—including Portrait and/or Life Drawing—at Inspire Community Fine Art Center here in San Antonio.

His artwork is on display several times each year at art shows, restaurants, Inspire (where he teaches), and even here at FBCSA. The batik collage at the balcony entrance coming from the office suite at FBCSA is an example of his work.

Dan can usually be found second row center in the choir loft, his ministry of choice.

Dr. N. Seth Nelson has earned a DMA and MM in organ performance at The University of Michigan, under the tutelage of Dr. Marilyn Mason. While there, he was also the first to earn the Certificate in Musicology, writing a thesis on the pipe organ controversy of the Puritans in New England. He earned a BM from the University of Texas at San Antonio as a pupil of Dr. Bess Hieronymus. There he received numerous awards for his work as an organist, pianist, and accompanist, and was honored with the Presser Award, graduating from the UTSA Honors College Summa Cum Laude.

A passionate church musician, Nelson is Organist at First Baptist Church of San Antonio. Previously, he has been Interim Organist at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Austin, and Shepherd of the Lakes Lutheran Church in Brighton, Michigan, and Faith Presbyterian Church in San Antonio. Dr. Nelson, an Associate with the American Guild of Organists, maintains an active concert schedule and has performed in France, the Czech Republic, Poland, England, Germany, Austria, and in the United States. Equally comfortable on the piano as the organ, he is in high demand as a collaborative musician. Nelson is the accompanist for the San Antonio Choral Society and is on the accompanying faculty of Trinity University.

Chaney Rutherford

Chaney Rutherford’s love for music took root in Uvalde, Texas, when his parents enrolled him in violin lessons in 1984. At only 4 years old, he still remembers the excitement of learning a song and the joy it brought to those for whom he performed. Although the violin was fun and challenging, he soon took an interest in the guitar and has not put it down since.

Along the way, he studied various styles of guitar including classical, bluegrass, western swing, fingerstyle, and praise and worship. He has played professionally in the greater San Antonio area for more than 20 years.

Chaney graduated from Texas State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Music with an emphasis in classical guitar performance, having studied under Mark Anthony Cruz. While in college, he participated in numerous guitar quartets and jazz combos. He played violin with the Texas State Orchestra and has performed twice at Austin’s Guitars Galore Festival.

Since 2009, Chaney has managed Hearts’ Home Acoustics, a boutique guitar shop in Boerne. All the while, he has continued teaching guitar and other instruments to students of all ages, a vocation he has enjoyed, since 2002.

Chaney began serving at FBC San Antonio in 2007. He regularly helps in leading the band-led Logos service, as well as serving weekly in the traditional services, alongside his family group, Word from Home.

When he’s not serving around the community, Chaney can be found at home, playing music alongside his wife and four children—his favorite songs of all.

Jennifer Zaccagni began her study of the piano at the age of 6, taking lessons from her Mother who was a piano teacher. By age 8 she was accompanying her children’s church choir and she has continued in that capacity as accompanist and collaborator until the present. Her music education included a Bachelor of Sacred Music in piano performance from Lincoln Christian University in Lincoln, Illinois, the MAT from Trinity University in San Antonio, and a Master of Music with emphasis in Choral Conducting from UTSA. After graduating from college in Illinois, Mrs. Zaccagni moved to Springfield, Illinois where she accompanied the Oratorio Society, Opera company and was a member of the symphony. Additionally, she taught piano at McMurry College in nearby Jacksonville, Illinois. She also maintained a private piano studio while playing both organ and piano in area churches. Since moving to San Antonio in 1985, she has served as pianist for the Children’s Chorus of SA, been a staff accompanist at UTSA, a rehearsal accompanist for SA Master Singer’s, and frequent Region and All State accompanist. She has also served as choral director in numerous High Schools throughout the city and area. Her calling to minister as church musician continues at First Baptist Church where she plays the piano for services and concerts. She continues her love of teaching piano as a part of the faculty of Imago. Her passion is to impart to others what she has learned throughout her lifetime of music making.

Mark Oehlert has used his God-given talent to create art for over 40 years. Earning a BA in Advertising Design, he has made a living for more than 35 years as a successful designer and illustrator. Nurturing an interest in fine art painting throughout his lifetime, he sought out other painters, studied their techniques and began to create his own works of art. His favorite subjects to paint include much of God’s beautiful handiwork in the Rocky Mountain high country, particularly around Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana. His accomplishments in the field of fine art painting have earned him many awards, accolades, and inclusion in numerous private collections, exhibitions, and invitations to fine art shows across the US.

Mark has maintained a working studio in San Antonio since 1987, teaching private lessons for both children and adults. In the last 10 years, he has taught a growing number of students in the homeschooling community. “I believe that everyone is born with an innate ability to create. As a teacher, I help my students discover that God-given creative ability and bring it into the visual realm. In my classes, we work together to develop and use that ability to communicate an individual’s vision of beauty.”

Aaron C. Hufty serves First Baptist Church of San Antonio as the Associate Pastor of Worship and Music. He directs the Sanctuary Choir, Chapel Singers (youth choir), oversees the vibrant children’s choir and hand-bell pro-grams. Aaron has also implemented the Orchestra at First, the First Fine Arts Series, and the Imago Arts Academy. Prior to full-time ministry Aaron spent his career in the class-room. Most recently he was a Lecturer at Baylor University where he taught conducting, music appreciation, the Baylor Women’s Choir, and created VirtuOSO – a contemporary a cappella ensemble. He also spent nine years in the public school sys-tem. He has been very active in the local community serving as the chorus master for the Lyric Opera of San Antonio, the artistic director of the San Antonio Choral Society, and the chorus master of the Mid-Texas Symphony. Aaron was also a charter member of the San Antonio Chamber Choir. He received his BS in Vocal Music Education from Northwest Missouri State University; his MM in Choral Conducting from the University of Texas at San Antonio; and DMA in Choral Conducting from the University of Texas at Austin. Aaron lives in San Antonio with his wife, April, and his daughters Rachel, Susannah, and Jessica.