Shane W. Dittmar is a musician; educator; and composer of popular, theatrical, and concert music. A native of Raleigh, NC, he studied Music Education at UNC-Greensboro and now serves as the music teacher at the Washington State School for the Blind in Vancouver, WA, where he lives with his wife, Kaitlin, and guide dog, Chevelle. His music is shaped by his unique view of the world; Shane is legally blind, and so he strives to create, in his musical endeavors, sincere expressions of landscapes, stories, and emotions that you don’t need sight to experience.
As a vocalist, Shane has had the opportunity to perform as a member of several wonderful choral, vocal jazz, and contemporary a cappella ensembles. He has also performed his own songs in concert, and, in 2015, became the inaugural “Blind Idol” after winning a national singing competition sponsored by IFB Solutions, an organization in North Carolina which works to support and employ people with visual impairments.
Shane has worked extensively in musical theatre as the music director for productions such as Into the Woods, The Tempest, Pippin, Bat Boy, Rent, and Porgy and Bess. “Musical director and keyboardist Shane Dittmar,” wrote the Raleigh News and Observer of North Raleigh Arts and Creative Theatre’s production of Rent, “…gives the rock score proper power but also great subtlety and warmth when needed.” He has also written, arranged, and orchestrated music for productions by Raleigh Little Theatre, ArtStream, and Arts Access NC.
Shane’s published choral works include “Annunciation to the Shepherds,” a setting of verses from Luke 2, which was published by Hinshaw Music in 2019 and premiered by the North Carolina Master Chorale; “If I Can Stop One Heart from Breaking” (text by Emily Dickinson), published in 2018 by Heritage Music Press; and “Cantate,” a psalm setting which is published by Hinshaw and was named as a 2016-2017 Editor’s Choice selection by sheet music retailer J. W. Pepper. His music has been performed internationally by middle and high school students as well as collegiate and all-state ensembles.Full Bio (PDF)