Here's more about me and my education:
I was born and raised in Italy and have been singing since I was a child but started a formal training during my teenage years with a private coach. During college, while studying Psychology at the University of Florence, I attended 2 different private music schools in Florence and Bologna, since it was not possible at the time to study music in College. There I kept studying vocal technique, solfege, classical guitar and music harmony.
I moved to LA 11 years ago and attended Musician's Institute earning a diploma in Vocal Studies and Vocal Performance and then I attended a Composition & Songwriting Program at UCLA for 2 years. I refined my vocal technique studying at Berkley College of Music for a summertime in a special program for Jazz Vocalists and I have been an Alexander Technique's student for now 10+ years.
I am a performing artist and I sing and teach privately for a living. I have performed all over he country in some beautiful venues such as the Getty Center and Pantages Theater to name a few with the renowned A-capella Choir "Petra Haden And The Selleouts", as well as my own solo Artist project. Guitar is my second instrument but I accompany students with my piano during vocal exercises. My personal style of singing is modern, not operatic, I love many kinds of music but especially pop, jazz, and musical theater.
There are two sides of singing that I like to work on with my students.
The first is vocal technique, which is first and foremost the study of how to use our instrument, our whole body, in the best and most useful way to avoid strain ad create beautiful sounds. I believe that when we relax and use the right, meaning the most natural posture, then our bodies and our breathing mechanisms act as they are supposed to, and singing magically happens at its best. When we learn to use our bodies without strain, the right "singing" muscles are automatically engaged and exercised and we feel at ease. So I try to encourage a non-forceful way to use diaphragmatic breathing, which I have learned by studying Alexander Technique, which is a technique that teaches people how to stop using unnecessary levels of muscular and mental tension during any activity, especially during a artistic performance of any kind.
I try to notice bad singing habits the student may have formed throughout his/her life, (hopefully none!), and gently help them correct them. The vocal exercises I use are drawn from the Bel Canto tradition, a classical tradition, but I mix them with more modern vocal exercises to develop popular techniques like "belting" for example.
The second side of singing is simply to pay attention to song interpretation, to convey the message we would like to convey. I encourage the student to choose songs to work on they truly love, and I welcome any style of music. I give the students vocal exercises CDs to help them practice at home.
What I described above is also true for teaching children, however I like to teach them "by ear" with simple vocal exercises at the beginning of the lesson and try to ease them into the sound they naturally make. I like to create a positive environment in which the student can feel successful about even small achievements, whether it is standing in a relaxed way or having practiced the beginning of an exercise or part of a song. To help the student practice at home and keep the motivation alive without feeling overwhelmed I give them a CD with just the exercises we work on together and the accompaniment for the song of their choice so they can have fun at home.
*** Studio Equipment ***
For students who come to my home studio, there is private guest parking right outside my building, in a gated complex of buildings and in a safe neighborhood just north of the 101. My studio is conveniently located just a few blocks from the freeway entrance. I have a comfortable sofa for parents and siblings to attend the lessons and a keyboard to use for accompaniment. Also, I periodically offer my students the chance to record one song in my studio, equipped with nice microphones and a professional recording system.
*** Travel Equipment ***
I bring my small and light master-keyboard and laptop or I can use the student or student's parents piano/keyboard. For children's lesson I ask the parents to bring a notebook to keep track of practice assignments.
*** Specialties ***
Music theory and traditional methods for guitar. I also encourage performance and like to teach students how to feel comfortable on stage. Additionally I teach vocal jazz improvisation, musical theater and Italian song repertoire.
Please send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) call me at (818) 398-9115 to schedule your lesson.