Dr. Chelsea Whitaker is a collaborative pianist and vocal coach enjoying a diverse career including art song, opera, chamber, and musical theater repertoire. Passionate about American art song, and particularly that of living composers, she has worked with composers such as John Harbison, Jake Heggie, John Musto, Ben Moore, Paul Moravec, Alan Louis Smith, John Heiss, and Matthew Recio. Whitaker has performed in venues such as the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., Merkin Hall in New York City, and Jordan Hall in Boston.
Prior to her appointment at Eastman School of Music, Whitaker served on faculty at New England Conservatory, where she taught and coached in the voice and opera departments. Recent work has included performances with Cincinnati Song Initiative, Sparks and Wiry Cries, Music for Food, Boston Art Song Society, Callithumpian Consort, and Calliope’s Call; vocal coaching positions at Boston University Tanglewood Institute and University of Massachusetts—Amherst; a staff pianist and vocal coaching position at Boston University; and music director positions with Boston Opera Collaborative.
Whitaker received her training under Cameron Stowe, Jonathan Feldman, Alan Smith, and Robert Weirich. A native of Kansas, she graduated from the University of Missouri—Kansas City with a B.M. degree in piano performance. She completed an M.M. degree in Keyboard Collaborative Arts at the University of Southern California, and a D.M.A. degree at New England Conservatory.