Welcome to NEC's Prep Voice Department and our community of young singers, their families and our expert faculty! We offer private instruction, preparatory voice classes for younger singers and a full curriculum of classes and ensemble opportunities for intermediate to advanced young singers. Our program offers training and performance opportunities for singers interested in exploring the vocal arts from classical to jazz. We're here to support young singers in their vocal development and offer information and education for their parents and families on vocal training, vocal health and career paths that can begin with voice study.
At NEC Prep Voice Department, we welcome all students who love to sing and want to learn more! Our Saturday program brings together many different students from around the state and beyond to share their excitement for music-making and singing. Feel free to take some time learning about our program on this page and don't forget to read about our wonderful Voice Faculty. Consider joining us to explore the power of your own voice! Please let us know if we can answer any questions you may have along the way.
Jennifer Sgroe, Voice Department Chair
"Truly to sing, that is a different breath." - Rainer Maria Rilke
Private lessons of 30, 45, and 60 minutes are offered. Prospective students must set up an audition or placement interview with the department chair, who will advise each student personally regarding an appropriate studio teacher placement.
For specific information regarding teacher placement, please contact the Preparatory School office by phone at 617-585-1130 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Master Classes for Singers
NEW! - Voice Area Masterclass
Prep Voice Department Faculty
Jennifer Sgroe, Coordinator
This will be an opportunity for an all-voice area masterclass. Classes will offer performing & coaching opportunities, guest teachers and lectures, recital preparation, discussion and study of voice related topics and an opportunity to get to know our colleagues.
This class meets monthly on the following Saturdays from 2:00 - 3:00 PM:
Fall Semester 2012
9/22 Jennifer Sgroe - How to have a Great Semester & Sing-In!
10/13 Jameson James - Intro to Alexander Technique
11/10 Clara Sandler - Intro to Spanish/Latin American Song
12/8 Thomas Oesterling - Winter Recital Preparation
Spring Semester 2013
1/26 Dr. Thomas Carroll & Elizabeth Parillo of TUFTS Center for Voice & Swallowing - Vocal Health & Wellness
2/23 Sabrina Learman - Musical Theater Repertoire & Audition Preparation
3/9 Barbara Winchester - Operetta! What's it all about?
4/27 Clara Sandler - Evaluation & Spring Recital Preparation
Early Vocal Training Classes
Jennifer Sgroe, Coordinator
Open to high school juniors, seniors, and advanced sophomores who are registered for voice lessons. The series of four vocal masterclasses focuses on different styles and aspects of performance. There will be 6 to 8 performers in each master class. Students learn by both performing and auditioning. These masterclasses are very popular among teens: the students learn important performing tools, and have a chance to meet their peers.
These special topic classes meet twice a semester on Saturdays, from 1:00 – 3:00 PM:
October 20th, 2012 - Michael Meraw, Director, NEC Undergraduate Opera Studio; Voice
January 19th, 2013 - Working with the Composer with David Sisco
April 20th, 2013 - Dramatic Interpretation and Character Development with Teresa Winner Blume
Full Semester Classes
Some classes and choruses require an audition, which will be held in September.
Please contact the office at 617-585-1130 or email email@example.com for more information.
NEW! - Preparatory Voice Class for Young Singers
Sarah Houghton, Instructor
This class offers beginning level group instruction in singing for students aged 7 - 13 as preparation for private lessons. Singers learn about the basics of vocal training through age-appropriate vocal exercises and song preparation, building healthy vocal habits within a supportive and fun group setting. Singers learn how to prepare and present solo songs through coaching and performance in class. This class will culminate in an end of semester recital. This class is offered in two sections by age group.
Sing-In / Interest Meeting: Saturday, September 9, 2012
Ages 10 - 13
Saturday, 12:15 - 1:00 PM, Full Year Course
Ages 7 - 9
Saturday, 1:00 - 1:45 PM, Full Year Course
NEW! - Musical Theater Class for Singers
Sabrina Learman, Instructor
In this class, singers will study and prepare works from the musical theater repertoire. Solo repertoire will be assigned from the early decades of the 1900’s, spanning to contemporary works, as students gather a sense of the history of this ever-expanding genre. Through the coaching of specific songs in class, students will delve into character, style and text, as well as how composers reflect these elements in the accompaniment. The class will culminate in a performance of the works studied in class at the end of each semester.
Prerequisite: Ability to learn music independently.
Limit: 16 students, ages: 13 – 18.
Sing-In / Repertoire Selection Interview: Saturday, September 8, 2012.
Saturday, 12:00 - 1:00 PM – Full academic year
To schedule an audition, please contact the Preparatory School office by phone at 617-585-1130 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Vocal Chamber Music
Fall Semester Only
Barbara Winchester, Instructor
Open to high school students, this School of Continuing Education course offers an introduction to three centuries of literature for solo vocal ensemble (music for two or more solo voices and piano or instruments). Tailored to the interests and abilities of the participants, the course includes ensemble singing, ear training, diction, and stage presence, and concludes with a concert. Literature is drawn from the works of Brahms, Haydn, Schubert, Schumann, Fauré, Rossini, Dvorák, Britten, Purcell, Foster, and others.
Auditions - Saturday, September 8, 2012. Call (617) 493-7393 for more information.
Rehearsals - Saturday, 3:00 – 4:30 PM
Lyric Diction for Singers
Jennifer Sgroe, Instructor
An introductory course in lyric diction for singers that will include a study of the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). Fall Semester will cover English and Italian diction; Spring Semester will cover French and German diction.
Text: The Singer’s Manual of English Diction – Madeleine Marshall (Schirmer); A Handbook of Diction for Singers: Italian, German, French – David Adams (Oxford University Press). Foreign language dictionaries as advised by the instructor.
Saturday, 12:00 - 1:00 PM, Full Academic Year
Audition and Performance Preparation for Singers
Thomas Oesterling, Instructor
Singers will learn how to present songs and arias both in audition and recital format. Both focused text study and breath/body movement exercises will be used to create the most expressive and well integrated presentations for each participant. Techniques for reducing performance anxiety will be covered. Singers must begin with a repertoire of at least two memorized pieces or be able to learn new pieces quickly in order to benefit fully from the class.
Saturday, 12:00 - 1:00 PM, Fall Semester Only
Youth Chorale and Youth Camerata
Jonathan Richter, Director
The Youth Chorale is open by audition to advanced high school-age (grades 9 - 12) singers, Soprano, Alto, Tenor, and Bass. The Youth Camerata is a highly advanced ensemble comprised of SATB singers who are members of the Youth Chorale. One trademark of the Youth Chorale in recent years has been the opportunity to perform with orchestra.
Youth Chorale Rehearsals – Saturday, 3:00 - 4:30 PM
Youth Camerata Rehearsals – Saturday, 4:45 - 5:45 PM
NEW! - Young Women's Chorale
Jonathan Richter, Director
The Young Women's Chorale is a select intermediate ensemble comprised of sopranos and altos in grades 8 - 10. This ensemble performs a wide variety of challenging choral repertoire for women's voices in up to 4 parts. Additionally, the instruction in YWC focuses on healthy vocal production and the improvement of essential musicianship skills. Entrance to the Young Women's Chorale is by audition, and selected students may have the option to dual-enroll in either Children's Chorus or Youth Chorale (entrance also by audition).
Rehearsals – Saturday, 1:00 - 2:00 PM
Sarah Houghton, Director
There are three choruses offered in this integrated program, which is designed to supplement the early instrumental studies and the theory program, as well as teach early to advanced choral technique. The ages listed are guidelines. Each child will have an individual meeting with the director for appropriate placement in the program.
Open by audition to advanced treble voices. While there are no specific age guidelines for this ensemble, most members of the Chamber Chorus are in grades 8 - 9.
Rehearsals – Saturday, 10:10 - 11:55 AM
Open by audition to intermediate to advanced singers with unchanged treble voices. The Children’s Chorus has collaborated with musical ensembles throughout the Boston area. While there are no specific age guidelines for this ensemble, most members of the Children’s Chorus are in grades 3 - 8.
Rehearsals – Saturday, 10:10 - 11:30 AM
Open by audition to beginning and intermediate singers with unchanged treble voices. This ensemble is geared toward teaching fundamental elements of music. Children work with recognition of pitch and basic musical symbols, exploration of the differences between speaking and singing voices, and concepts of posture, breath control, and diction. While there are no specific age guidelines for this ensemble, most members of the Preparatory Chorus are in grades 1 - 4.
Rehearsals – Saturday, 8:45 - 9:55 AM