The development of a reliable singing technique is paramount to becoming an artistic musician and an effective communicator. I encourage a free vocal production that brings out the unique characteristics and timbre of each student’s voice. My approach aims to coordinate the entire vocal mechanism into a singing gestalt, where all body parts are working in harmony and free of hampering tension. The components of my teaching method are:
• proper postural alignment, which acts as a foundation for the breath and the vocal apparatus.
• development of low, expansive breathing with a balanced resistance of respiratory muscles while singing.
• a healthy, flowing phonation that facilitates a steady and energized release of air.
• coordination of laryngeal muscles throughout the range that accommodates changes in registration.
• elimination of any tensions that hinder the production of a free tone.
• an open throat, balanced resonance, and clear articulation
• clear communication of concepts and exercises that students can employ successfully while practicing.
• the use of Bel Canto and functional exercises designed to target each student’s specific technical weaknesses.
• the use of kinesthetic movements that encourage physical freedom and guide mental thought processes.
• the teaching of proper practice habits that allow students to make progress between lessons.
I emphasize the role of the singer as an artist and communicator. Good diction and a thorough understanding of the meaning of the text and translation are essential, as is proper musicality through attention to phrasing, dynamics, tempi and articulation. The engagement of the whole body both technically and dramatically leads to exciting, expressive singing.
Voice lessons extend beyond simple voice instruction. I believe it is my job to inspire my students and to push them to reach their full potential. Students are given repertoire that piques their interest, challenges them without going beyond their abilities, and focuses on the technical issues the student is working on. I believe in creating a relaxed, positive environment that allows students not only to have fun during their lessons, but also to excel as performers.
University of Connecticut, voice instructor, 2013 – present.
• Teach a private voice studio of 12 undergraduate voice and music education majors.
• Teach “Applied Music Techniques – Vocal”, which provides music education majors the pedagogy, techniques and understanding to teach general music and choir for elementary through high school aged students.
Boston University Tanglewood Institute (BUTI), voice faculty, 2011 – present.
• BUTI is a six-week summer program for some of the country’s best high-school singers.
• Teach a private voice studio of 10 students.
• Teach intermediate and advanced levels of music theory.
• Serve as the music theory coordinator.
• Direct opera scenes.
Brown University, teaching associate, 2016 – present.
• Teach a private voice studio of6 undergraduates.
Eastern Connecticut State University, lecturer in voice, 2015 – present.
• Teach a private voice studio of 9 undergraduate theater majors and music minors.
• Co-teach weekly studio class for all students in the voice department.
• Teach “Introduction to Voice Studies,” which focuses on in-depth vocal pedagogy and the development of critical listening skills as applied to voices.
Boston University, graduate teaching assistant, 2010 – 2014.
• Taught a private voice studio of 6-12 to voice/music minors and non-majors.
• Taught “Class Voice”, which provided non-majors and music education majors vocal instruction in a class setting. Lectures addressed vocal pedagogy and dramatic presentation.
Norwood High School, adjunct voice faculty, Norwood, MA, 2001-3 and 2006 – 2016.
• Taught private voice studio of 8 students, culminating in spring voice recitals.
Private voice studio, 2010 – present.
• Maintain a small private voice studio.
Becky Folsom, 2014 – present
Penelope Bitzas, 2007 – 2014
James McDonald, 2006 – 2007
Bill McGraw, 2005 – 2006
Edward Zambara, 2001 – 2004
Elizabeth Arnold, 1998 – 2001