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Stefani's musical talents were first observed at the age of 5, when she began private study of piano and music theory. She played the alto saxophone for a brief period of 4 years during junior high and early high school, but then moved on to join the school choir at age 16. This choice led to the unexpected discovery of a beautiful, powerful voice. Stefani earned a Bachelor of Arts in Musical Theatre at the University of Tulsa, with special studies in jazz vocals, ear training, and theory. Her college career provided her with intense studies in the vocal styles of Musical Theatre, Classical, and Jazz. She performed in many musicals, plays, and recitals at TU, and during each summer, she worked as a cast member of Light Opera Oklahoma. She was a featured vocalist with the TU Jazz Combo and Big Band, and she performed at the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame. She gained her first studio experience her senior year at TU when she recorded a full-length jazz album.
All throughout college, her plan was to move to New York City and become a Broadway performer, but right before graduation, she had a change of heart and chose Los Angeles instead. Since her arrival, she has discovered her hidden talent of songwriting and also ventured into home recording. She has performed as a solo artist at venues all around LA and surrounding areas, including The Viper Room, The Mint, Genghis Cohen, Cafe Cordiale, B.B. King's, and House of Blues on Sunset.
Stefani possesses a strong desire to share her musical knowledge with others, and she enjoys teaching a wide range of musical styles. Throughout many years of private vocal study, her teachers have commended her strong skills of observation and adaptation, and they have always told her she would make an excellent teacher. Stefani tailors her lessons to fit each individual's needs, and she strives to help each of her students gain confidence and reach their own personal goals.
*** Lesson Details ***
I am a very upbeat person, and I create a positive environment in which my students feel comfortable to open up and stretch themselves to reach their full potential. I believe that hard work and discipline will help you to achieve your goals, but I also recognize the importance of having fun and celebrating the art of creating music! I tailor my lessons to each student's individual needs.
For Singing, I focus on breathing, intonation, and control, which provide the foundation for great singing technique. I teach a wide range of music genres, including musical theatre, opera, jazz, pop, soul, rock, and country. I emphasize feeling the emotion of each song and translating that emotion through the voice. I also teach performance and recording techniques. I have my students study both classical and contemporary music.
For Piano, I focus on finger strength and dexterity, reading music, and the basics of music theory.
For Speaking Voice, I utilize the Linklater technique to free, develop and strengthen the voice. A large part of this process centers around freeing the body from unnecessary (and often unrecognized) tension, in order to liberate the natural voice. I also focus on breathing and articulation. These lessons are highly recommended for actors.
*** Studio Equipment ***
f/w keyboard in a professional music center
*** Specialties ***
Vocal genres: Musical Theatre, Classical (Opera), Jazz, Soul, R&B, Pop, Rock, Country / Piano: sight-reading, accompaniment / Speaking voice method: Linklater
· Piano · In studio My 10 1/2 year old son is loving his lessons with Stefani. She is so enthusiastic and talented. We feel really lucky to have her as his teacher.
· Singing · In studio Stefani's personality immediately reduced my singing inhibitions from 90% to 5% in less than 5 minutes. . . Her approach is relaxed ~ encouraging ~ & educational.
I am confident that she will assist me in taking my voice ~ range ~ & personal singing enjoyment further than I thought possible.
· Singing · Stefani is a great voice teacher!
Stefani is a wonderful voice teacher. She always adapts quickly to teach in a style that works for me. She knows when to push me as a singer and when to keep the lesson relaxed and carefree. I would highly recommend her to anyone from beginner to advanced!
· Singing · Stefani S. is the Teacher you want!
I am very happy I made the right choice in choosing Stefani S for my daughter. My 7yr. old daughter just loves coming to her class. Stefani is genuinely kind, sweet, attentive, sings beautiful, and works very well with my daughter! My daughter and I are looking forward to her progressing with Stefani. We are excited for her outcome in singing. I would recommend Stefani S. to everyone that really wants a great singing teacher!
· · Compelling Instructor
Stefani is a super talented vocal coach very in tune with the student's needs with respect to generating a relaxed and inspired space for breakthroughs. Her style is calm yet clear and assertive; I feel like I'm making tremendous progress in my range and self confidence as a performer just after two lessons.