The second half of the learning equation comes down to location. It takes a supportive environment to get great results, which is why we host our lessons in professionally-designed studio spaces. They're climate-controlled to keep you comfortable so you can maintain focus on the lesson, and acoustically-insulated so your voice will ring true and you can easily hear your progress from session to session. Of course, our lessons will provide you with plenty of insight and direction for practicing at home as well!
In 2011, Ms. McMurtery performed the role of Papagena in a concert version of Mozart's Die Zauberflöte with New York Lyric Opera. In 2010, she performed in St. John's, Newfoundland as a participant in the Opera on the Avalon summer training program. Other operatic roles performed include Susanna (Le nozze di Fiagro, Mozart), Sister Dolcina (Suor Angelica, Puccini), Poppea (L'incoronazione di Poppea, Monteverdi), Héro (Béatrice et Bénédict, Berlioz), Mercedes (Carmen, Bizet), and Ännchen (Der Freischütz, C.M. von Weber). Also a frequent recitalist, she performed as the soprano soloist for the Hugo Wolf/Goethe Project in New York, NY for the (re:) Directions Theater Company in 2010. Other studies abroad include the Florence Voice Seminar, in Florence, Italy (2007 and 2005), and at the Carl Maria von Weber Hochschule für Musik in Dresden, Germany (2002). Ms. McMurtery holds a Master of Music degree in Voice Performance and Pedagogy from Westminster Choir College of Rider University (2006) and a Bachelor of Music degree in Voice Performance and German from DePauw University of Greencastle, Indiana (2004).
We've carefully selected the most qualified and well-respected instructors—a great fit for those who are just learning to play as well as those who want to advance their skill and become master musicians. Beyond having celebrated careers, every instructor is personable, patient and well educated, often with advanced degrees in music from renowned schools of music. For added peace of mind, all of our instructors are required to pass a thorough background check.

For devoted musicians, instruments are almost like an extension of the body - but vocalists are the only ones who can truthfully say their body itself is an instrument. And what an instrument it is! There are as many unique voices as there are people in the world, so no two vocalists have exactly the same sound. What that means is simple: if you want an instrument that's like no other, your voice is it. All it takes is to learn how to unlock its potential, and that's where vocal lessons at Guitar Center come into the picture. We'll prepare you with the basic skills and knowledge you need for success, and guide you through the process of developing and fine-tuning your voice to bring out its musical potential.
Two things in singing are non-negotiable: breath support and jaw placement. This online singing class will teach you both! You’ll learn breathing exercises for singing as well as proper jaw placement. Your instructor will even discuss diet for singers and the impact it can have on vocal health. A little homework will give you even more vocal training so you can build on a solid foundation of singing skills.
Now that you have warmed up your resonating chambers, you can try singing on other vowels to continue warming up the voice. The "Aah" sound is one of the hardest to produce - but you should be able to perform this without pressure or force if you are doing all these exercises in succession. This is because we have placed major focus on exercises that keep the feeling of the voice in the face, nose and mouth.
Riley could not even look adults in the eye when speaking to them when Steve began teaching her at age 10. But by the time she graduated high school at 18, she had blossomed into a very powerful, skilled, and controlled singer who had starred in several school productions and won several awards and accolades such as the NJ NATS award and the NJ All-State Honors Choir.
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