Barbara A. Thompson-Welch


Barbara Ann Thompson-Welch of Warwick, NY passed away on May 19, 2020 at Valley View Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, Goshen, NY, due to complications from Covid-19. She was 79 years old.


Born in Washington, D.C. on November 14, 1940, Barbara was the daughter of Josephine Louise (Russo) and Corbin Craig Thompson. Barbara graduated from Saint Bernadette School in Silver Spring, Maryland before going on to college at The Catholic University of America where she received both Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees.


In 1963, Barbara sang with the Cardinalaires performing for John F. Kennedy at his Inaugural Gala under the direction of Leonard Bernstein. That same year Barbara and the Cardinalaires toured with the USO to Puerto Rico, Guantanamo, and Panama before being evacuated due to anti-American riots over sovereignty of the Panama Canal Zone. Returning home to D.C., Barbara began her teaching career at Chillum Elementary School in Prince George’s County, Maryland. Barbara continued to pursue her singing career, as well, performing classical music recitals at the National Gallery of Art, the Phillips Collection, and The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as guest soloist with the National Symphony, and many other notable performing arts venues in and around the Nation’s Capital. 


In the 1970’s, Barbara played leading roles from the great canon of classic American Musical Theatre often opposite her first husband who, together, owned and operated two dinner theatres in  D.C. and Virginia. By the mid-70’s Barbara had left her home in Georgetown and moved into a 2 bedroom apartment at 78 West 85th Street, NYC, where she began auditioning for Broadway bound productions. It wasn’t long before Barbara was cast in the National Tour of Hello Dolly with the original Dolly, Carol Channing. The Tour crossed the country playing all the great houses including a stint in Hawaii where she married her second husband and Carol Channing’s drummer, Winston Welch. After six years on the road, the tour culminated with a run on Broadway at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre.     


After Broadway, Barbara returned to her teaching career at Saint Ann’s School in Brooklyn Heights where she taught beginning and advanced voice and music. In 1991, she left Manhattan for Warwick, NY, where she enjoyed the serenity of her lake home in Hill Lake Estates and friendships with good neighbors. She continued teaching at Saint Ann’s for six years until the commute became too much.


In 1996, Barbara accepted the K-8 music teacher position offered her at St. Stephen-St. Edward’s School in Warwick, NY. While creating a well-rounded music program at St. Stephen-St. Edward, Barbara also taught private voice and music lessons. One of her greatest joys was working as the vocal coach for the Warwick Valley High School musicals with Director, Mr. Nick DiLeo, and her longtime friend and fellow music teacher from Saint Ann’s, Dr. David Crone. Barbara was a dedicated musician and committed to her students who she loved. She took great pride in offering them praise and encouragement and sharing with them her gift of music.  


She is survived by her brother, Craig and his wife, Karen Thompson, and their daughter, Emily Thompson of Warwick; and several nieces, nephews and cousins.  She was predeceased by sisters Linda M. Defeo and Sharon E. Madine.


In remembrance of Barbara Thompson-Welch and in honor of her legacy of music education, please consider making a small contribution to or the Theatre Development Fund,


Due to the restrictions on public gatherings, private burial arrangements have been made.


Private burial arrangements have been made by Lazear-Smith & Vander Plaat Memorial Home, 17 Oakland Avenue, Warwick, NY. To send an online condolence, please visit  



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I met Barbara through my daughter and granddaughter who are Warwick residents and took voice and piano lessons with her. We had the opportunity to enjoy each other’s company on several occasions. She was delightful to be with and I will remember her fondly. I am so sorry for your loss. May God comfort you and bring you peace.
Barbara Lantiegne
I was so deeply saddened to learn of Barbara's passing. I was so honored to act with and direct her in several productions. Her beautiful voice was equally matched by her generous spirit, loving heart and deep and rich laugh. My heart breaks for Craig, Karen and Emily Rose. I will never forget you dear, wonderful Barbara!
Susan Rosenstock Friedman
Dear Craig and family, my daughter Neisha and I send our deepest condolences. We remember Barbara so fondly, and with appreciation, as she was Neisha's voice teacher years ago. Sending love and peace to you all.
Donna Kaminski
Craig, Karen and Emily We are so sad to hear about Barbara. I fondly remember the times she sang with us in the choir. So talented and a really nice person. Losing our loved ones is so difficult but these times have made it even worse. We will keep you in our prayers...until we all see each other again ....God bless and with much love and sympathy! Lynn and Barry
Lynn and Barry Cheney
To Craig, Karen and Emily, I am sad to learn of Barbara's passing. What a remarkable, talented woman she was! Life well lived. May your memories and love for each other sustain you. Hugs from Sharon Manley Vander Clute
Sharon Manley Vander Clute
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