"Any voice student has the ability to succeed—both on a personal and artistic level. As their instructor, I maintain high expectations for the student, often higher than what they believe they can reach. While reaching one’s expectations is usually accompanied by a feeling of worthiness, far more is gained on simply the journey toward those expectations. Most importantly in teaching voice, especially to the musical theater singer, is imparting lasting wisdom and tools that can be kept in the singer’s “toolbox” to be used throughout life when they are pursuing opportunities outside of the vocal studio setting. A thorough understanding of breath, resonance, and tension-free singing is the foundation for voice students. Aiding students in achieving a healthy, balanced sound is one thing, but providing them with knowledge to maintain that vitality and beauty throughout their life/career is quite another.
Throughout the exploration of their voices, students can experience an increased sense of vulnerability. This is paramount in the process of learning how to use one’s voice, both on and off of the stage. Students not only learn about how their voice operates on an anatomical level, but also how to allow their voices to be a vessel for their emotions. This vulnerability can be accessed through performing in front of peers, discussions of character/given circumstances, and a number of acting exercises. I believe in creating a safe place for students to explore vocal technique as well as themselves emotionally. This inner expression will aid the student in growing exponentially, not only as a singer but as an artist and person as well.
As a singer that has gone through vocal therapy myself, I understand the needs, both physically and emotionally, that accompany a vocal challenge. I envision myself as both an instructor and mentor in these cases, allowing the student the support he/she needs as they experience the healing process. Vocal health is vital in my teaching and music directing, as health is for any athlete. I remind students that what is most important in their singing is what they feel and not what they hear. The priority of feelings over hearing is one way in which singers can have careers that last a lifetime."