D.M.A. CANDIDATE, SHENANDOAH CONSERVATORY
M.M., New York University, Steinhardt
B.M.E., Baylor University
Certificate of Vocology, National Center for Voice and Speech
PROFESSIONAL credits of students include White Christmas National Tour, title leads in shows such as Matilda and Annie, Broadway World award winners and lead and recurring role characters in dramatic podcasts.
EDUCATIONAL credits of students include Best Leading Actress nominations and Division 1 ratings at UIL Solo and Ensemble and lead roles in shows such as Little Shop of Horrors, The Addams Family, Legally Blonde, Jr., Wizard of Oz, Seussical the Musical, Jr, Anything Goes, Beauty and the Beast and Into the Woods.
COLLEGE ACCEPTANCES include Molloy College/Cap21 Conservatory, Studio School in Los Angelos, AMDA, the University of Utah, Florida Southern University, the University of Arlington and Long Island University and Texas State University’s performance and production program.
AUDITIONED-BASED PROGRAM acceptances include pre-professional companies, acting conservatories, select ensembles,NEXUS Music Theatre Summer Intensive at Texas State University, Texas Arts Project (TAP), and Texas Musical Theatre Workshop (TXMTW) at the University of Texas at Austin.
MY TYPICAL WARMUP SEQUENCE:
WHY I DO WHAT I DO
Some sort of semi-occluded vocal tract (SOVT) exercise (lip trills, rasberries, v-buzz, straw work) - Slide 5-1, 8-1, or 5-3-4-2-3-1-2-0-1
SOVT's get things going with a friendly little jumpstart, helping to keep unnecessary strain off the throat from the beginning of the lesson by allowing some of the phonation work to be done by the self-oscillation the SOVT allows the vocal folds to do. (These exercises are also great for singers who are convinced that they can only sing up to a certain note. When they balk at singing the same note in a later exercise or song, I can remind them that they already hit the note during their SOVTs!)
Chest RegisterWork (yeah, yeah, yeah | how are you today | pu ti pu ti pu ti mi mi su) - 5-3-1 or 5-4-3-2-1
Many of my singers consider themselves to be belters and have far more confidence in their lower range, so I want to build their confidence first before challenging them in their higher register. These are speech-like exercises, encouraging them to produce their sound in a similar way as they would while speaking. I continue to use descending melodic lines during this part of warmups to encourage air flow and eliminate strain.
Head Register Work (trill into [u] or [a] or vowel of their choice - Slide 5-1, 8-1, or 8-5-1, and/or staccato [thu tha thu tha tha] - 5-8-3-5-1)
Starting them back on a SOVT helps place the following tones in a similar forward position, as well as encourage similar air flow as they use in the SOVT. Staccato exercises give the student less time to panic and overwork on "scary" high notes! It also build more coordination between vocal folds.
They ate their vegetables, so now they get the fun stuff: Belt/Mix Work (Meow, meow, meow 5-3-1 | that's my mom - 1-5-1 | I said stay away 1-3-5-3-1)
I want to make sure they are utilizing both their chest and head registers when they are mixing (because...you know...they're mixing registers and all), so I isolate those warmups first. Once we are in this part of warmups, I want to make sure they are having to belt up into notes, since that is the nature of belt songs. If, however, they start an ascending belt exercise with too much tension, I'll take them into a descending belt exercise to try and remove excess strain, then back into an ascending exercise aiming to keep the extra weight off.
"Megan has been a phenomenal voice teacher. As an adult student I have a lot of engrained habits we’ve been working to unwind. Megan has been patient and creative with finding new ways to guide me to the right placement and positions when one method isn’t clicking for me, and has been a wonderful listener not only in regards to recalling language I use to explain how something felt when the sound was right, but even checking in on aspects of my personal life and how I’m doing as a human. I would absolutely recommend her and have seen so much progress with my range, tone, and the creation of healthier singing habits"
"Megan is very knowledgeable and dedicated to the growth and personal development of her students. Her instructions are very clear and she is also a very good listener."