LEGACY MUSICIAN - HARRY L. BERTHELOT (January 18, 1924 - April 7, 2013)
HARRY LEE BERTHELOT was born on January 18, 1924, in New Orleans, Louisiana. He was the first child of Vivian Louise Lewis and Walter Berthelot. He attended Elementary and Middle School in New Orleans. He moved to Los Angeles, California, to finish his studies and got his degree in Business and Hotel Management. He was employed at the Hilton Hotel and retired after 25 years of service.
Harry Berthelot was a member of Wesley United Methodist Church for over 50 years. He was also involved in the following organizations: 12 years on the Men's Trustee Board; Trustee of the District Committee of the United Methodist Church of the California Pacific Conference; member of Wesley United Methodist Housing Corporation.
As a young man, he became involved in the many musical activities in the Los Angeles area. He became a member of the Opera Chorus of Jefferson High School, and participated in the Opera Workshop that evolved therefrom. Under the tutelage of Voice Coach Valdermar Banks, he learned and executed many tenor and baritone roles in numerous operas that were performed at Jefferson High School and throughout Los Angeles. He also had the good fortune to study with Professor Mario Carta, who at that time was on the faculty at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA).
For 50 plus years he was a member of the Wesley United Methodist Chancel Choir. During his service on the Chancel Choir he elected President. He also often served as the musical director of the choir. He was a longtime member of the Georgia Laster Branch of the National Association of Negro Musicians (NANM) and its Symphonic Chorale. He was also a member of the Shambrey Chorale, the El Camino College Community Chorus, and the United Methodist Male Chorus.