Creating art and teaching others to create art is my passion. I see myself not just as a voice teacher or director sharing expertise with students, but a partner with them to help them grow and achieve their musical and theatrical dreams, to trust their instincts, and to explore all the beauty of their natural instrument. Read more below or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I currently direct the opera program and teach voice at Texas A&M University Corpus Christi. Previously, I taught voice at Georgia College, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (while pursuing my doctorate), Earlham College , and Broad Ripple High School and Fairview Studios in Indianapolis. My students have performed professionally and with community organizations including Indianapolis Opera, Footlite Musicals, and the Indianapolis Festival Singers and have performed leading roles in musicals and operas at the University of Illinois and at Texas A&M Corpus Christi. They have been accepted into undergraduate and graduate vocal performance and music education degree programs at institutions including NYU, Ball State, DePauw, Kentucky State, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I am a full member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS).
Quotes from Students
“She is invested in teaching and trying to help my voice grow technically and musically. Tries different exercises to guide a technique until it makes sense.”
“You are a wonderful and interesting woman who is passionate about this material and I appreciate that very much.”
“Thank you for being patient with me. This was my hardest class in the sense that I actually had to work a little at it every day…thank you for pushing me and motivating me. My mom hears recordings of me sing and she doesn’t recognize it now (probably because I sound way better).”
Philosophy of Teaching
As an educator, I start with the belief that training in music is part of the process to educate a whole individual with varied interests and talents. In addition to developing their musical skills, students should recognize the place of music as part of culture, language, history, and science, and make connections between music and their other subjects of study. I rebel against the notion that the arts are separate from other fields, and I believe some of the greatest work happens when artists of different disciplines collaborate. At our best, we as creators and interpreters of art not only entertain but also enlighten.
My first step as a voice teacher is getting to know the student’s voice, preferences, and goals. Students are collaborators with me on this journey–I expect them to be able to analyze what they are doing so they can recreate the methods that work best, to be willing to experiment and challenge their own notions of what their voice can do, and to practice effectively on their own to demonstrate clear improvement. A typical series of lessons involves eliminating physical tension, supporting the sound on a moving breath, finding a balanced resonance, addressing register breaks, and developing good vocal habits. In addition to classical repertoire, when appropriate I expose students to music from a variety of traditions, including jazz and musical theatre, and work with them on music that connects to their other areas of study.
Singing is, first and foremost, communication, and to that end I believe that singers need both formal and informal performing opportunities. Students do not need to wait until they have a role in an opera or musical to consider movement and character analysis, but should work on this in conjunction with their lessons, studio classes, and studio recitals. The use of improvisation exercises during lessons and in studio class can free students’ creativity and help them develop interpretations that are uniquely their own. Repertoire selected for scene work must fit the students’ developing voices and aid them in their educational journey.
Nothing is more gratifying to me than helping a student unlock the potential of their voice. I do not believe this is mysterious–I aim to be as clear and scientific as possible in my explanations, to put the basics of technique first, and to realize that each student has different needs. Because art has enormous power to elucidate even the most difficult issues of our times, I consider it my mission not simply to train technically proficient singers, but to help develop intelligent artists who can use their talents to effect positive change in the world.