Bonny Jean Fredricks (BJ)
FREDRICKS, Bonny Jean (BJ), 62, passed away in Bennington, Vermont on November 18 after an 18-month struggle with cancer. A talented mezzo-soprano, she sang with a number of New York City-based professional choral ensembles, including Voices of Ascension, New York Choral Artists, Musica Sacra, the Choir of St. Ignatius Loyola, New York Virtuoso Singers, and the Concert Chorale of New York.
Born on September 29, 1958 in Northport, NY, BJ was a graduate of SUNY Purchase (BM, oboe), the Manhattan School of Music (MM, voice), L’Écoles d’Art Américaines in Fontainebleau, and the French Culinary Institute. A Brooklyn beekeeper and urban farmer, she was driven by a lifelong love of food and a passion for sourcing it herself, which included annual fishing trips in Alaska. She served magnificent feasts for friends at every conceivable holiday occasion. An avid bicyclist and runner, BJ ran seven Marathons, including Boston and New York City (twice), all under four hours.
She is survived by her partner of 21 years, Wende Persons, her brother Paul, sister-in-law Fran, nieces Kimberly, and Kelly (Bildusas), as well as her extended family, dear friends, neighbors, and a huge chorus of colleagues with whom she loved singing. Her mother, Joane Failey, predeceased her in 2007.
In 2018 BJ bought a house off the grid on ten acres in the Green Mountains of Peru, Vermont. It was her true happy place. She spent the last months of her life during the Pandemic shutdown in peaceful hibernation with her partner and her pets.
Celebrations of BJ’s life will take place at a safe, post-Covid date. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to Wolfe’s Neck Center for Agriculture and the Environment (www.wolfesneck.org), Voices of Ascension (www.voicesofascension.org) or the charity of your choice.