I couldn't have known it at the time, but that simple sentence would change my life forever. I was not a soprano and I knew that. Fortunately for me, my teacher Michael wouldn’t allow me to live with that limiting belief. The importance of realizing my potential as a soprano was not to become a great singer, but rather to become the person I needed to be to achieve it. Today I fully accept my true soprano voice even though, ironically, I sing less often in public than I used to.
I'm primarily a vocalist, though I play piano for my own enjoyment and my distant past includes time with the flute and clarinet. I studied voice with Michael Mentzel for five years and this is where I enjoyed my greatest growth into the singer I am today.
My influences as a singer include Dawn Upshaw, Kelli O'Hara, and Natalie Dessay. I'm drawn to musical theater in general and specifically to the creations of Stephen Sondheim and Jason Robert Brown. Most of my favorite shows are ones most people have never heard of. I sometimes wonder what that says about me. ;)
Stretching the term "vocalist" beyond just singing, I also use my voice for spoken word projects. I have done a number of readings, primarily poetry, for LibriVox.My LibriVox Profile
Some of my best memories are of singing with a small group. Here I'm singing "Moonlight" by John Williams from the movie Sabrina with friends Becki Jones (alto), Charlie Russell (tenor), and Mark Krueger (bass) of The Reston Chorale.
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Some photos courtesy of Paul Cress