Frequently Asked Questions

Why take voice lessons if I've already been told I can sing?
Natural talent is a very good place to begin, but natural talent can only take you so far. In order for natural talent to reach its fullest potential it must be examined, its various parts isolated and developed. Then all of the parts must be brought into coordination in a way that maximizes the potential of your instrument. Throughout this process it is also critical to identify bad habits that limit your ability and replace them with habits that serve to complement your natural gifts.
What can I expect from my first lesson?
Our first lesson is an Initial Fit Lesson. We get to know you, assess the voice and you’ll learn some powerful exercises to make you a better singer, even if we don’t continue training together. You will learn the foundation of this vocal technique and how it can strengthen your voice and performance. We will start to cover the vocal exercises you will be working with in the coming weeks.
What can I expect from ongoing lessons?
For the second lesson we continue with the vocal exercises. You will have the exercises I recommend on MP3 and a booklet to work with. In ongoing sessions, we’ll begin with the exercises and move into singing music you’d like to work with, as well as music that I recommend.
How soon can I expect to see results?
I encourage students to look at their progress gradually, since changing vocal habits is a process. You may notice some changes after 2-3 weeks, or it may be 2 -3 months before you really notice any changes.
What is the Blaylock Vocal Method?
I am a Certified Voice Teacher of the Thomas Blaylock Vocal Method. It is a systematic approach to vocal development and you will work with an exercise booklet and recorded exercises. This technique is revolutionary. It can teach you how to find and maintain a clear and fully resonant sound every day (either speaking or singing). When your voice is “under the weather”, you will learn how to work with it so you don’t have to stop using it to let it heal.
Is your main focus on technique or do you work on artistry also?
The first two lessons will focus on technique entirely, but after that we will do a combination of exercises and songs. I focus on balance; a balance within the lower and upper registers of your voice (achieved through the exercises) and a balance of technique and artistry. I will shift what we’re working on in a lesson, depending on your goals. If you have an upcoming audition or performance, we will focus more on preparation for that and less on exercises. It all depends on what you need.
Where do you teach?
We teach from my studio in SE Portland, at 23rd & Hawthorne Blvd.
Do you teach children?
Yes, I start working with children at age 3.5. Prior to age 3.5, I recommend toddler programs like Music Together and Gymboree.
What styles of music do you teach?
I teach all styles of music: classical, musical-theatre, jazz, pop, folk, country, R&B, etc. If you can sing it, I can teach it. 
Do you work with the speaking voice as well as the singing voice?
Yes, definitely. I use the same exercises for developing a speaking voice or a singing voice. If you are having any problems with your speaking voice, I recommend this technique to help you achieve a clear, resonant sound and a strong connection to your breathing.
Do you work on audition preparation?
Yes, having over 25 years of experience with auditions has given me insights into how to best prepare for them. If you want to work only on audition material for a limited number of sessions, we would skip the technique and focus on your immediate goals.
What is the difference between a voice teacher and a voice coach?
A voice teacher is someone trained in vocal technique and vocal artistry. A vocal coach is focused primarily on vocal artistry and working with various languages. A coach works minimally with technique and primarily with artistry/languages.