Summer Voice Institute
UPDATE: This institute has been canceled.
June 21-27, 2020 (One-week session)
The Naked Voice For Singers And Teachers
The Institute will be an exposé and application of the principles discussed in The Naked Voice: A Wholistic Approach to Singing by W. Stephen Smith (Oxford University Press, 2007) for singers and voice teachers. For the singers it will include private lessons, master classes, acting classes, dramatic coachings, and a performance of opera scenes. For the teachers it will include five two-hour seminars on voice technique and pedagogy in a lecture/master class format along with the opportunity to participate in the acting classes and to observe the singers' private lessons and master classes. Lessons, master classes, and seminars will be taught by W. Stephen Smith. Acting classes, dramatic coachings, and scene staging will be by Gene Roberts. Singers should have completed at least three years of collegiate level training. Teachers should have collegiate level voice teaching experience. Space is limited to 10 singers and 10 teachers.
MUS_WKSP 310 Sec 1 Performance Workshop, One-Week 0 credit
MUS_WKSP 315 Sec 1 Performance Workshop, One-Week 0.5 credit
(Additional charge to register for credit)
Participant Tuition: $650
Full Program Auditor: $400 (non-credit)
(Only checks, money orders or cash will be accepted for auditor fees)
SINGERS: a digital video of two opera arias in different languages and one other selection of your choice (art song or music theatre piece). TEACHERS: a digital audio recording of three selections of your choice.
Expectations of Participants
All participants are expected to purchase and read The Naked Voice: A Wholistic Approach to Singing before the Institute begins.
SINGERS will be expected to have assigned music learned and completely memorized prior to arriving. They will also be expected to attend the orientation, the first technique/pedagogy session, all four master classes, all three acting classes, their two private lessons, dramatic coachings as scheduled, and the scenes gala and dress rehearsal. They will also have the option of auditing the rest of the technique/pedagogy seminars.
TEACHERS will be expected to attend the orientation, the 5 technique/pedagogy seminars, the singers' four master classes, the gala dress rehearsal, and the gala. They also will have the option of observing any of the singers' private lessons, the dramatic coachings, and be participants in the acting classes.
How to Apply
Applications must be submitted via the Summer Application (closed). Upon creating a file in the Application, applicants should select “Summer Session” as their application type, and then select the workshop to which you are applying. This will ensure that your file is distributed to the correct reviewers. No separate application form is necessary--do not submit an application to Northwestern University via the Common Application or Graduate Music Online Application. Applicants will be asked to upload a detailed resume as well as all audition requirements.
The deadline for participant application is May 4, 2020. Those accepted for participation will be notified by May 15, 2020. The deadline for accepted participant registration with full tuition due is May 29, 2020.
NOTE: No paper application will be accepted. Do not mail recordings as these will not be reviewed or returned.
On-campus housing is available for participants 18 years of age and older. Participants who have not yet reached the age of 18 must either commute to campus each day or find alternative housing options.
W. Stephen SmithClose
Baritone. W. Stephen Smith previously was a faculty member at the Juilliard School for thirteen years. Prior to that appointment he taught at the University of Houston and was Chair of the Voice Department at the Saint Louis Conservatory of Music. Professor Smith also served as a vocal instructor for the Houston Grand Opera Studio from 1990 to 2003 and has held a position on the voice faculty of the Aspen Music Festival and School since 1996. His book, The Naked Voice: A Wholistic Approach to Singing, was published by Oxford University Press in 2007.
Professor Smith’s students include many of today's most noted artists such as Christine Brewer, Joyce DiDonato, Eric Owens, and Marietta Simpson. His students have performed leading roles in major opera houses, including the Metropolitan Opera, the Royal Opera House at Covent Garden, Lyric Opera of Chicago, and La Scala, and have won numerous prestigious competitions. Many have placed in the District and Regional Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and have been national finalists. Among the apprentice programs where his students have studied and performed are those at the Santa Fe, San Francisco, and Chautauqua Operas, Opera Theater of Saint Louis, and Wolf Trap.
Professor Smith has performed over forty roles in opera and musical theater and has been a soloist with the St. Louis Symphony and the Oklahoma Symphony. He has also stage-directed 22 different productions and served as music director and conductor for several shows.
Director of Opera Theater at Metropolitan State University of Denver, counts opera director Sally Stunkel and Britten specialist Colin Graham among his mentors. His students have appeared on London’s West End, in Germany, and on US National tours. As a performer he was part of the Swiss premier cast of Webber’s Phantom of the Opera in Basel. In Stuttgart he played the role of The Beast in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast in the German production. He played Mr. Eager in the workshop of the Des Moines Metro Opera production of A Room with a View and the Town Crier in the Houston Miller Theater revised premier of Bilby’s Doll with Carlisle Floyd as director. Other roles include Chevalier de la Force (Dialogues of the Carmelites), Don Basilio and Antonio (Le Nozze di Figaro), Bardolfo (Falstaff), Normano (Lucia di Lammermoor), and Gherardo (Gianni Schicchi).