Teaching Philosophy

The goal is to enable the student to sing as freely as possible through an easy inhalation and a released exhalation. This empowers the student’s musical instincts and leaves him free to communicate in the concert hall, the opera house or on the musical stage. I strongly encourage each student to accept their own unique sound. 

 

When I was a Professor of Voice at NYU, often my job in the first semester of dealing with a freshman is the undoing of vocal misconceptions brought on by the desire to imitate what they have been hearing. These misconceptions are likely from a combination of trying to accommodate the current vocal trends in music theatre and pop music, and of misinformation garnered from other sources. Though I respect the passions and instincts that brought the individual to my studio, it is my responsibility as a teacher to present choices rather than create limitations. As the history of our field has taught us, there is no magic answer. There are only muscles, time, perseverance, and instincts that need to be explored and guided. These instincts are influenced by the greats that have come before.

"Michael is a treasure. This judgment is based on a fact: the best teachers are those who can assess where the student is, appreciate where the student is trying to go, and then help him get there. Sounds simple, but isn’t!  He is technically superb. but also worldly wise, and kind, and empowering.  Lucky me!"

 

-NYU President Emeritus Dr. L. Jay Oliva

 

Experience

 

Private Vocal Studio (New York City)

  • Individual instruction in vocal technique and interpretation in opera, art song, and musical theater repertory. 

 

New York University Steinhardt School of Education, 1998-2018

  • Vocal Performance Program Associate Coordinator of Vocal Studies

  • Voice Faculty 1998 – 2018

  • Mentor Teacher 2002 – 2018

  • Course Teacher, Music Theatre Repertoire, Song Analysis

  • Musical Director and Conductor for student productions

  • Musical Director for classes in Song Analysis and Character Analysis

  • Accompanist/Adjudicator for entrance auditions and student placement

  • Co-Adjudicator and Coordinator for recitals

  • Coach Accompanist for programs in Classical Voice and Music Theatre

  • Choral Conductor and Director of NYU Jazz Choir (2002-2003)

  • Administrative duties regarding curriculum development, vocal instruction,

  • Teacher evaluation and advisement in addition to teaching.

 

Recipient of Teaching Excellence Award 2005-2006 

The Steinhardt School at New York University

 

Turtle Bay Music School (New York City), 1988 – 1994

  • Voice Faculty: Individual instruction in vocal technique and interpretation in opera, art song, and musical theater repertory as well as vocal master classes and school recitals.

  • Director, Opera Workshop: Conducted, stage-directed, coached and played two opera scenes productions per year.

 

Professional Master Classes

  • Broadway Artists Alliance, Summer 2017, New York, NY.  Masterclasses in Song Interpretation, Acting the Song, and College Audition Preparation.

  • The American Academy of Dramatic Arts (AADA) 2017 Summer Program, New York, NY.  Industry Insight Panel: The Art of the Audition.

  • Shang-Hai Conservatory of Music, June 2013, Shang-Hai, China.

  • Shang-Hai Conservatory of Music, December 2014, Shang-Hai, China.

  • Classical Singer Magazine Convention Master Classes and Competition Judge, May 2013, Boston, MA.

  • Classical Singer Magazine Convention May 2009, Chicago, IL.

  • The Voice Foundation 2008 Symposium Master Class, Philadelphia, PA.

  • The Voice Foundation 2005 Symposium Master Class, Philadelphia, PA.

  • The Voice Foundation 2006 Symposium Master Class, Philadelphia, PA.

  • Comparative Vocal Pedagogy June 2006 NYSTA, New York, NY.

  • Point Park University Student & Faculty Master Class, September 2006, Pittsburgh, PA

  • Classical Singer Magazine Convention May 2008, Philadelphia, PA.

  • Classical Singer Magazine Convention May 2006, Philadelphia, PA.

  • Classical Singer Magazine Convention May 2007, San Francisco, CA.

  • Point Park University, Music Theatre BFA Program Consultant, March 2007, Pittsburgh, PA.

  • Classical Singer Magazine Convention Master Classes and Competition Judge, May 2014, San Antonio, TX.

 

 

Click to view my full Curriculum Vitae

 

 

Teaching Interests 

 

Vocal Technique 

 

Vocal Repertory Coaching 

 

Accompanying 

 

Conducting Class 

 

Italian Diction 

 

Opera Workshop

(Musical & Stage Direction) 

 

Music Theatre History & Repertoire 

 

Opera History & Repertoire 

Conducting Miranda Mhoon as Sister Marie. Act II of Dialogues of the Carmelites, 2018