Along with accredited programs offered at such well-known facilities as Santa Monica College, USC Thornton School of Music and the Musicians Institute, LA is home to an abounding variety of independent voice education instructors. These professionals help singers achieve success in the music industry. Many of these teachers and coaches have already reached the apex of their careers. They have also garnered operative relationships with established recording artists, popular bands, leading talent agencies and progressive recording studios. For those yearning to act on their aspirations or fortify their vocal abilities, here is a select list of recommended entities that provide some of the more advantageous voice lessons in LA.
Hollywood Academy of Music
7469 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90046
www.hollywoodacademyofmusic.comServing the greater LA region and San Fernando Valley, this premier school is comprised of university-trained instructors that offer one-on-one and group lessons for vocalists of all ages. Established in 2004, Hollywood Academy of Music now has several convenient locations to meet the growing needs of aspiring and established recording artists. Private voice lessons take place Monday through Thursday and on Saturday. In a structured and encouraging environment, singers as young as 2 years old are able to choose their preferred music genre – from pop and rock to jazz and classical. Moreover, students get to participate in low-pressure recitals before a supportive audience to recognize their achievement and boost their individual levels of confidence.
California Music Academy
19015 Ventura Blvd.
Tarzana, CA 91356
www.californiamusicacademy.comAt this school, instructors prepare young vocalists for public performances by focusing on applied techniques aimed at protecting the developing vocal instrument. Students, starting at age 5, also learn basic stage etiquette, including proper posture, controlled breathing and definitive stage presence. The academy recommends that all students take piano lessons alongside their voice academics so they can learn to read music at a faster rate and establish proper intonation. Many of the academy’s motivating voice teachers are skilled pianists, youth mentors and professional performers that hail from prestigious institutions of higher learning, including the Julliard School of Music. In-home lessons are available for those residing in West LA, Santa Monica and Beverly Hills.
John Davies Singing Lessons
1041 N. Formosa Ave.
West Hollywood, CA 90046
www.johndaviessinginglessons.comThe recipient of the U.S. Commerce Association’s 2011 LA Award for Opera Singing and Voice Coaching, John Davies’ method is based on the “old Italian school of music.” This proven art form, that has been cultivated in conservatories throughout Europe for centuries, teaches singers how to perfect a blended and even tone that is in harmony with the body. In addition to teaching his students how to maximize their vocal capabilities, the classically trained performer concentrates on presentation, including how to stand, walk and avoid random movements. In addition to helping students create the type of singing listeners want to hear, the world-renowned baritone works with established artists whose voices may have been strained or damaged in an effort to help restore the entire range of their vocal instruments.
The Singers Workshop
4804 Laurel Canyon Blvd., Suite 123
Valley Village, CA 91607
www.thesingersworkshop.comIf you aspire to be a pop singer, Lis Lewis may be able to help you fulfill your dreams. The celebrity voice teacher coaches some of today’s popular recording artists in the music industry, including Britney Spears, Rihanna, Gwen Stefani and Colbie Caillat. The Singers Workshop provides private lessons, recorded to a study CD, that pinpoint major voice expressions – from range, pitch and tone to breath control and tension release. Lewis collaborates with record producers, bands, songwriters and major televised music competitions to help artists extract only the best from their presentations. Holder of a master’s degree in theater and music, Lewis has taught or lectured at a number of specialty schools, including Sir Paul McCartney’s Liverpool Institute for the Performing Arts in England. Singing lessons via Skype are also offered.
Micah Pro Vocals
2042 Lake Shore Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90039
www.micahprovocals.comListed among LA’s leading vocal coaches, Micah Plissner transforms garden-variety singers into authentic performing artists. From his top-of-the-line hybrid recording studio, this veteran of artist development prepares singers for stage, film, television and auditions. He trains both amateur and professional artists in all musical genres, including pop, rock, country and rhythm and blues. Plissner’s lengthy clientele list includes recording artists Diddy, Babyface, The Katy Perry Band and The Pussycat Dolls. He also has collaborative relationships with Sony Records, Warner Music Group, in addition to Universal/Interscope, the largest American music corporation in the world. Plissner’s lessons are intense and aimed at building vocal power, strengthening range dynamics and eliminating voice strain. Online lessons are available for those who are touring or live outside the LA region.
Sharon Raiford Bush is an award-winning journalist who covers topics of social interest in greater Los Angeles. Some news articles she has authored have been archived by the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. Sharon also contributes to Examiner.com.