Hello! My name is Marla. I don’t think there’s a day in my life that goes by when I’m not singing something…whether its humming while doing dishes or opera in the shower, I cant be stopped! (without much vocal fatigue I might add ;)) I’ve always been this way but when I was in high school, the fantastic voice teacher Alice Pierce heard me in a high school choir and encouraged me to take voice lessons. These lessons inspired me to keep learning about this magical instrument I brought everywhere with me capable of so much. Even after memorizing all of the parts of the larynx and studying singing for 10 years, the voice is still as majestic as ever to me. Every human has a unique sound, a true sound that is deeply personal to them and it is my job to help students find that voice. Now don’t get me wrong, its very impressive to high belt like Ariana Grande or whoever else (I’m a great Cher impersonator) but we already have those artists! Trust me, the world needs YOUR true sound, the sound that no one else has! Like I said, I can't stop singing, I sing all day every day to discover new sounds, space and resonance. This is what energizes me! I bring this energy and curiosity into my studio. I've been teaching private voice for 8 years and I strive to cultivate this curiosity with every student I encounter. We all come to singing for different reasons: Some love to build skills, some love freedom, some want to work on self confidence, some love the teamwork in shows, some feel compelled to tell stories, whatever the reason... Im all about it and after knowing the WHY, I am better equipped to prepare lessons tailored to each student! I see my role as a facilitator of exploration and curiosity of our vocal instruments so that we can explore and trust the most efficient use of the voice.
I’ve had the privilege of receiving scholarship to attend Central Michigan University where I completed my Bachelor’s degree in Voice Performance. After graduating I lived in Germany to intensively study the German language. Foreign languages are a huge passion of mine and I am proficient in German, French and Italian diction and enjoy continuing to refine my skills through my classical repertoire. While in Germany, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign offered me the prestigious Stotler Fellowship to come study and complete a master’s degree in voice performance and literature so I moved back! While in Illinois, I had the absolute privilege of great training with world renowned conductors such as Clair Levacher, Raphael Schluesselberg, Jeremy Gill and sung in Masterclasses with great artists such as Nathan Gunn and Isabel Leonard. I’ve been so lucky to be the recipient of various awards and competitions such as first place in the National Opera Association scene competition for my role of Miss Jessel in Turn of the Screw, First place in the Collness Singing Competition, and the recipient of the Schlanger Memorial Opera Award. I’ve always enjoyed performing and have had the opportunities to perform all across the U.S. Some of my lead stage credits include the staged premiere of Marianne (Letters from Quebec to Providence in the Rain), Héro (Béatrice et Bénédict), Mabel (Pirates of Penzance), Candida (A Minister’s Wife), Rapunzel (Into the Woods), Valencienne (The Merry Widow), Lucy (The Telephone), Musetta (La Bohème), and Zerlina (Don Giovanni) and more! Feel free to take a look at my CV attached below for a full view of my education and credentials!
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