The Voice, Opera & Vocal Coaching program offers an environment of excellence in which the healthiest development of the vocal artist can be achieved.
Voice, Opera & Vocal Coaching
About Our Program
Healthy vocal technique, age-appropriate repertoire and an understanding of musical style underlie the growth of expressive, communicative singers. While an operatic career may be the primary focus of many students pursuing majors in vocal performance at Eastman, our curriculum supports singers to become versatile, artistically creative, and technically secure in order to compete successfully in today’s marketplace.
Eastman Opera Theatre offers a comprehensive program of training and performance opportunities for the modern singer-actor. Performance techniques courses offer concentrated study in body self-awareness and movement, acting, text analysis, role study, stage combat, audition techniques, and stage directing. Each year, productions feature a wide range of musical styles, unusual lyric forms, and both traditional and contemporary repertoire that prepare the motivated student for the professional lyric theater world of tomorrow.
The coaches at Eastman strive to assist the voice teachers in preparing our students for both current performance needs and for a lifetime of thoughtful and disciplined musical and linguistic preparation. There is no extra fee for coaching at Eastman. Our coaching team includes two full-time faculty members, one part-time faculty member, and several affiliate faculty from other Eastman departments. Our coaches do not address any technical matters of voice production, but rather focus on repertoire, diction, rhythm, interpretation and style. The singers’ own pianists are welcome and encouraged to come to their coaching sessions whenever possible, but this is not required.
Every full-time voice major currently studying with an Eastman faculty member is entitled to regular coaching sessions in conjunction with their lessons. All coaching is registered and graded like any other course. Repertoire is selected and prioritized in collaboration with the student’s major teacher. Vocal chamber repertoire and oratorio are welcome in addition to songs and opera arias.
Frequent visits and master classes by such guest artists as Renée Fleming (MA ‘83), Marilyn Horne, Christine Brewer, Kristin Chenoweth, Stephanie Blythe, Jake Heggie, Gene Scheer, Ricky Ian Gordon, Lori Laitman, William Sharp (MA ‘76), Håkan Hagegård, Martina Arroyo, Benita Valente and Dawn Upshaw help to enhance the vocal experience at Eastman. Vocal coaches such as Margo Garrett, Armen Guzelimian, Martin Katz, Thomas Muraco, Craig Rutenberg, Graham Johnson, Roger Vignoles and Warren Jones have also presented master classes at Eastman.
Welcome to Voice, Opera & Vocal Coaching at Eastman! We are a team of highly accomplished professionals in many areas of voice teaching, vocal coaching and repertoire, language acquisition, acting training and opera production. Our work gives us immense joy because it is solely focused on the growth and success of our students. We feel that all the work needed to bring a concert, a recital, or a production to a standard of excellence is rewarded in the beauty and compelling communication of our students in various vocal art forms. As a community of artist-educators, we celebrate each other’s students in their artistic achievements. We respect the many types of expertise the faculty and staff bring to each project and the many levels of student that we serve. Our department strives to become ever more aware of the impact of structural racial injustice and we continually revise our policies and procedures to provide an inclusive, safe and equitable environment for all our students.
Chair, Voice, Opera & Vocal Coaching Department