“I want my students to have a strong sense of the lyrics and what it is they are saying. Great singers have a connection not only with their instrument, but with their material and their audience. Once they have a vision and the training to produce a range of sounds freely and efficiently, they can express themselves with greater precision and emotion. Knowing the options they have removes some of the fear and guesswork from the process of singing. The answer to fear is knowledge. I live by that.”
“My formal training and education is in opera and classical music, but professionally, I have been performing as a pop/rock singer-songwriter. When I started to develop hoarseness from singing pop so often, I realized how strange that was for someone with a master’s degree in vocal performance. Singers are born with a gift, but not one necessarily made for performing five hours a night. Vocal health is of utmost importance. I had to figure that out for myself the hard way, and it forced me to learn new techniques. I’m passionate about nurturing that in these young singers.”
"I'm teaching two unusual classes. One is called Musical Independence, which is basically a class for singers to develop some piano self-accompanying skills and to think about putting a song together. Then I have a liberal arts class called Sound, Body, and Performance. It's a very comprehensive class, looking at a holistic approach to performing. We do a lot of hand drumming, movement, meditating, and breathing. It fulfills a science requirement, so there's a lot of reading."
"I teach lessons for the Voice Department where I focus on vocal technique, assuring that students are singing in a healthy manner. The students are aware of my philosophy for warm ups: the more relaxed and flexible your vocal mechanisms are inwardly, the better your voice will produce outwardly. If you maintain your voice, keeping it warmed up using proper technique, your voice will be one of great longevity. I tell the students to treat their voices just as an athlete would treat their bodies before a game or a race. You wouldn't just wake up one day and say, 'I want to run a 26-mile marathon!' You have to properly prepare for it."
"I want students to know that they can sing in a healthy manner in the style of music that they love. It's not like making cookie-cutter singers where everybody has a certain quality of tone or a certain sound to their voice; you can sound like yourself and still use vocal technique. Technique really has to be habituated so that it's almost invisible to the naked eye. That way, you're watching the singer perform, be expressive, and be him- or herself, while technique is the underpinning that's allowing the singer to sing freely, but with good stamina and good intonation."