I hold my B.A in Voice from the University of North Texas. I was a member of UNT’s A Capella Choir, ranked among the top five undergraduate choirs in the nation. I have worked with a range of vocal teachers from many backgrounds, from a metropolitan opera star to voice science academics to professional singer-songwriters. This breadth of experience and research over the last 11 years has enabled me to refine the art of teaching someone how to sing so that it is effective and feels good for the singer to do, no matter where they start. For me, seeing the joy on a student’s face when they are able to stay in tune for the first time, or hearing their excitement on the phone when they tell me they've won a $20,0000 college vocal scholarship, makes it easy for me to say that I really love what I do!
*** Lesson Details ***
I teach adults beginner to advanced, and teens who are committed to developing their vocal skill.
I believe that ANYONE can learn to sing! It doesn't matter where you are starting from. I have worked with students that have had trouble singing on pitch and brought them all the way to winning competitions in the course of a year. That being said, those students were consistent, rarely missed a lesson, and were devoted to developing their singing skill.
If you have the time and energy to devote to developing your vocal technique, you absolutely will progress!
If you want to improve your singing, don't let anyone tell you that it's not possible! You need tools to find what works for your voice and a commitment to building habits that help you no matter what genre or blend of genres you'll be singing in.
One of the assumptions that can make singing more difficult than it needs to be is when you feel that if you don't sound "good", you aren't a good singer. That couldn't be further from the truth!
Your voice is a musical instrument and depending how you play it will result in what sounds come out and how easy those sounds are to make. How your voice sounds has NOTHING to do with how your vocal chords are structured and EVERYTHING to do with what muscles you move when you sing. So it's all about how you use your voice. This is why I have students make such huge transformations when they have enough time to build new vocal habits.
In my Austin studio and in Skype lessons, I give concrete, clear instructions so you know exactly what you're moving when you sing, and why.
It is critically important to me that I give honest feedback, but not by judgement. I will never say to you "That sounds bad" for two reasons:
1) No one feels better and more motivated to practice when they are given a judgement over their singing.
2) The phrase or message of "that sounds bad" is completely useless for learning how to sing, because it doesn't describe what is happening. You can have perfectly healthy singing be categorized as "bad" simply because the listener doesn't like that genre!
I give feedback through details. So if you don't sound "good" to yourself, I will help you figure out whether you are making that sound in a healthy way. Assuming that the singing is already in tune, we make sounds we don't like when we are tightening our throat. This is about half the time. The other half of the time, we are simply singing in a sound color/genre that we don't like that we picked up in our singing for whatever reason, and it's fairly simple to change that.
Because I'm only going to teach you what works for you, we may have to try a lot of things to help you find the coordinations involved in singing, but you'll never be stuck with the same exercises that don't seem to help!
I work with the students that have tried other teachers but felt that the instructions weren't clear enough to apply, and had no explanation as to why they have to do a particular exercise.
I explain every exercise that I give in detail and I make sure that every exercise will work towards your vocal goals. I will explain what habits apply to ALL vocal sounds and what habits only apply to some, why some people can belt and why others strain immediately when they try, and help give you a map to navigate through all the sounds that your voice can make.
Confidence on Stage
Some of my students are perfectly happy with their technique but fear singing in front of other people.
Technique can be helpful for confidence on stage because you can remember what to do with all the nervous energy rather than just try to hold it back. Technique alone, doesn't equal confidence.
In lessons, we learn what it takes to develop your confidence on stage, and many times this has to do with building a solid memory of your song.
If you know your song backwards and forwards, every note you sing is memorized and 100% comfortable, and your mind and heart are on a mission to express the message of the song, nervous energy is just extra fuel to the fire on stage. This is good!
As a singer, one of the toughest things for me was memorizing my song and figuring out when a song was performance ready. Between my college experience with voice professors, professional singers of multiple genres, acting experience, and my own research, I was able to develop ways to both quickly and solidly learn a song.
During lessons we will take efficient routes to show you what parts of the song are the easiest to remember, which ones need more repetitions to remember, and how to get them solidly memorized so you feel ready to perform them.
Another block to confidence on stage, besides technique and memorization, is knowing where to direct your thoughts and focus when you're singing. If your song is memorized and practiced, we'll work on how express the message using concrete, specific ways to make your expression of a song come alive on stage.
*** Studio Equipment ***
Piano and Voice Recorder.
*** Travel Equipment ***
Here are your supplies you will want for every lesson:
-CDs and/or MP3s of your songs
-Recording device of some kind
-List of songs you would like to sing
-Sheet Music we are working on
*** Specialties ***
I teach vocal habits that make all genres to sing easier in every way.
I also teach:
Music Theory for Singers