Of course you want an experienced, passionate, patient and compassionate teacher! Teaching is not my job; it is my calling and I am very good at it.
I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Education (1987, Ball State University) and a Master of Music degree in Voice (1994, University of South Florida). I've taught in public schools in Sarasota. Currently I am adjunct staff for State College of Florida (formerly Manatee Community College) teaching private voice and piano lessons and music appreciation classes.
My music studio has been serving music students in the Sarasota area since 1991.
All are welcome! Lessons are for students of all abilities. Some students come with just the desire to sing or play better for their own pleasure, others come with prior training, some are preparing for an audition and some even wish to make a career in music. Some people have come seeking help with their speaking voice for public speaking. My goal is to help my students meet and exceed their goals and have more life through the joy of music, to help them gain greater appreciation of music and increase their confidence both in music and in life!
*** Lesson Details ***
When a student and I first meet I ask the student what her/his hopes, goals, tastes and prior experience are. Then we talk about plans for achieving those hopes and goals.
Most of my students are studying music just because they love music and want to improve for their own benefit. Because of that, while I want students to progress, I am very patient. I understand that some weeks it's harder to find time for practice. I provide instruction and tools for growth, and show how to practice, then the students go home, use them and discover what works best for them.
Vocal lessons are tailored to each individual. Exercises include posture, breathing, diction, projection of the voice, unification of the voice, improvement of tone, range and flexibility. Healthy, beautiful singing is the goal. The confidence that goes along with that is amazing!
CDs with exercises and accompaniments are provided. And students can make CDs of their own performances!
Piano instruction is also tailored to the needs of each individual student. With young beginners I often use the "Faber" method. It has books for music theory, technique, lessons and performance. And students enjoy playing along with the Cd that goes with their pieces.
For older beginners, including adults, I often use the "Bastien, Older Beginner" or "Alfred, Adult Beginner". Both quickly teach melody and chord reading so that students can play more interesting pieces within a month. The lesson materials are supplemented by simple classical pieces or other music the student is interested in.
When a student comes in with prior training I continue with what she/he has been working on and adjust it as necessary. Literature for more advanced students is chosen with their abilities, technical and expressive needs.
*** Studio Equipment ***
The studio area is closed off from the rest of the house. There is a small seating area for parents which is separated by a screen from the lesson area. I have a Yamaha CVP-103 digital keyboard with weighted and touch sensitive keys, plus lots of different instrument sounds and beats to make playing and singing more fun. I can also adjust the pitch of songs so that they fit the student's voice. The keyboard is plugged into a Super Scope Cd recorder; a microphone is plugged in as well. This allows me to make recordings of accompaniments and practice exercises, as well as recording students' performances. (See below for photos.)
*** Specialties ***
I have been teaching professionally since 1987; I have Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Music. I discover the goals a student has and give them the tools to reach those goals. My teaching style is structured yet highly personalized for the individual. I teach music ranging from Classical to Popular always using the best techniques.
Founded in 1944, National Association of Teachers of Singing, Inc. (NATS) is the largest professional association of teachers of singing in the world with more than 7,000 members worldwide.
· Piano · In studio Laura is very pleasant and knowledgeable. Hope I can grasp the technical aspect rather quickly - and hope I don't lose patience,
· Piano · In studio I found Laura to be an excellent piano teacher. I had never taken a lesson before, and she was patient, experienced, and extremely knowledgeable. Her explanations were clear and concise. I fully recommend her!
· Classical Voice · In home I first started taking voice lessons from Laura Spaulding in 1998 when I was a freshman in high school. She did an excellent job at teaching me proper vocal technique through vocal exercises and breathing exercises. I learned to take proper care of my singing voice while I was growing up and my voice was still developing. I learned the importance of not belting and not doing anything to damage my voice and impair and even possibly lose my ability to sing in the future. She is very good at teaching her students to take proper care of their natural instrument so they can share it with the world their whole lives. Because of how she trained my voice I am a classically trained singer with ability to sing musical theater as well. I currently sing in my church choir and do local community theater plays. Those are just two examples of what I'm able to do as a result of Laura Spaulding's voice training. I highly recommend her to anyone who is looking to learn how to sing and have opportunities open up as a result.
· Singing · In studio I was an abject beginner, over 65, who couldn't sing Happy Birthday in tune before I worked with Laura. I looked forward to my lessons. She has a method that works and will move you up quickly and surely from whatever level you start with. She is very personable and professional to deal with.
· Piano · In studio As a beginning adult piano student, I was a little apprehensive to start lessons.
But Laura made me feel comfortable and is very patient with my slow progress.
Laura has also been extremely patient when I have had to cancel or change lessons. She has done everything possible to work around my schedule changes and fit me in at another time.
· Singing · In home An incredible woman who pushed me towards getting outside of my uncomfortableness with my own voice while also being gentle enough to not send me flying. If I still lived in Sarasota I'd be going to her every week still.
· Singing · In studio She was awesome! Very sweet and knows her stuff. I felt very comfortable working with her and look forward to taking more lessons!
· Singing · In studio Laura was terrific. She stayed on track and focused on where she was trying to get us.
· Piano · In studio I've only had one lesson, but as an absolute beginner I was a little intimidated by piano lessons at my age. Laura made me very comfortable and confident that I could do this and succeed.
· Piano · In studio Good experience