"Thanks for another great lesson today! You are fantastic!"
Peggy Larson (Artistic Director, Earthtones)
Natalie's roster of private students is a testament to her dedication to sharing her knowledge and helping others discover the joy of singing. She maintains a wide range of students, from individuals who have never sung, to professional vocalists and musicologists seeking advanced training. Students learn and continue their studies in the fundamentals of proper voice production, breathing techniques and vocal health. Although students seek her out specifically as a style coach for traditional folk styles with an emphasis on Eastern Europe, Natalie's methods are just as applicable to rock, pop, jazz, classical and musical theater. With experience teaching vocal music to a wide range of ages, from kindergarteners to octogenarians, Natalie believes that it is never too early or too late to begin exploring the wonder of your voice.
"I was impressed at Natalie's ability to work with a wide range of egos, consistently striving to be positive, and hence, elliciting the best performance possible from each as individual, and from the group as a whole (even when egos clashed!)."
former ensemble member, Mila Vocal Ensemble
Natalie's expertise in style imitation have made her an in-demand style coach and consultant amongst not only individual singers, but also professional and college choral ensembles, including Boston Harmony, Mila Vocal Ensemble, One Voice Mixed Chorus, The Rose Ensemble, and others. Results-oriented, her coaching is marked by a balance of encouragement and demand for excellence. Whether your ensemble wants to expand its repertoire, learn different ways of using the voice, or just learn more about the music of other cultures, these "boot camp" workshops are a great way to get to the next level.
"Wonderful job at helping us understand the different sounds and understanding the organic nature of the music."
Mila's "Real Women Yip" workshop participant
A workshop with Natalie is more than just exercise for the voice; it's a cultural experience. Participants not only learn the mechanics of singing in various styles, but they also learn about the story behind the music and the styles' origins and evolution based on geography, topography, history, lifestyle, linguistics, politics, religion, mythology and more. Natalie's unique pedagogy is informed by a combination of her classical training background and her ethnomusicological experience at home and abroad. Whether you would like to learn to yip with the best of the villagers (e.g., themed singing workshop) or want a more general lesson in Eastern European folk music (e.g., high school or college-level world music class) or vocal styling (e.g., lecture and group singing), Natalie can help you find your voice.
"Natalie! I really love learning from you because you're always so patient and so excited that I want to do everything perfectly. You've made me feel really confident like I can sing any way if I try. Thank you for making me feel good about my singing abilities!"
Village Harmony camper
"...the experience was unforgettable."
2006 Balkapalooza! graduate
School residencies: From kindergarten through college, Natalie's curricula focus on the voice's role in art, culture, and society in a way that is age-appropriate and exciting. Beginers learn about rhythm, the communicative role of the voice and how to free it safely. Advanced and older students learn techniques for different timbres and ornamentation, while developing a broader anthropological and cultural understanding of the sources of these techniques and their relevance in the modern world. Whether your school is preparing to set a particular performance or whether you're looking for ways to diversify your choral program, Natalie's expertise in teaching Eastern European vocal traditions is a unique way to enrich your school's student body.
From the ArchivesBalkapalooza! summer camp: This one-week intensive Eastern European music and culture workshop was developed by Natalie and her Orkestar Bez Ime colleague, Colleen Bertsch. Focusing on honing motivated young musicians' skills, Balkapalooza! offered a combination of student ensembles, hands-on learning, European folk singing, cultural studies, and intensives with guest area specialists. Registered students received a study packet in advance of the workshop. This unique programming has served as the foundation for Natalie's present-day residencies and workshops.
:: click for information on past Balkapalooza! workshops ::
Other opportunties: Since 2011, Natalie has been a guest leader for the New England-based Village Harmony family of singing camps and workshops, from the all-ages Mid-Winter workshop to teen summer camps. For a current schedule of camps Natalie is leading, please visit the events page.
:: more information about Village Harmony ::