My Education Accolades and Experience
I graduated with high honors from The Metropolitan State College of Denver in 2007 with a Bachelors in Music with an emphasis in Vocal Performance and a Bachelors in Theater with an emphasis in Acting. Over the course of my own voice lessons, I received 5 scholarships and assisted the Music Events Manager, Charla Bevan-Jones, for two years through the work study program. I have over 15 years of voice, theater and performance experience and have performed in over 50 productions. In school I specialized in musical theater and opera (I'm a classically trained Lyric-Coloratura with a 3 and a half octave range), though I am currently pursuing a voice acting career. I play guitar, some piano and have played a range of other instruments including flute (for 12 years) and bassoon (for 2 years).
I've taught privately off and on throughout college, with my first serious students during my time at the Colorado Renaissance Festival. I taught one-on-one sessions for 4 of my 6 years performing at CORF, with my last two years as a vocal coach for the street cast, court cast and a few stage acts. I was also the assistant director of the Madrigals for one year and the director the next consecutive season. I've been with The Lesson Studio as a voice teacher since 2014 and I enjoy it immensely.
My Approach to Teaching Voice Lessons
Due to my extensive theater background, I teach a body centric approach to singing with an emphasis on word-body-breath relationship for emotional connection with the audience and improved healthy vocal production.
Words: The process of audiation, or “the ability to hear and understand music for which the sound is not physically present”as it relates to spoken word. If we think of the meaning behind the word as its put to music, that word is then more easily understood by the person to which it is being sung.
Body: Body awareness and grounding through specific movements and exercises. These movements help to bring awareness to and away from certain common tensions and behaviors that can help or hinder healthy vocalization.
Breath: Without breath there is no voice. Learning good breath management and deep, focused breathing techniques are the basis for all good vocal production from scream metal to pop to opera. This applies to primarily microphoned and studio only singers; there is only so much that recording software can fix!
One of My Practice Techniques
The two biggest challenges most vocalists face are the disconnection between what they're hearing and the sound that is actually being produced, and not having music with which to practice. I encourage students of all ages to record their entire voice lesson and not only listening to it during the week, but to practice with it. This way, they can hear what the exercises accomplished during the lesson and they can emulate and practice that exercise at home. Also, it helps to have a recorded accompaniment to sing with outside of lesson times.
My Favorites in These Five Styles (this was really hard)
- Rock/Punk - Aerosmith/The Clash/Imagine Dragons
- Pop - 21 Pilots/Adele
- Opera - Mozart
- Classical - Handel (The man could write for sopranos!)
- Musical Theater/Disney - My Fair Lady/Moana