SHADAN SAUL GUERRERO —As much as I love the spotlight (and believe me I do since I am a soprano!) I would like to take a moment to let the reader know that all of our productions would not be possible without the assistance of a trio of very important people: our coaches!!
Yes, we all know about the voice teachers and conductors and directors but what about the coach? Who is he? And what are his magical powers? You might laugh but coaches are magical! They have a way of teaching us singers all those things we are taught in our voice lessons and sometimes are not able to do right off the bat. They not only correct our musical mistakes (yes we have some before performance but only a few) but most of all they help us develop the wonderful range of color with which we paint our characters. Coaches –good coaches (and we have some amazing ones)– bring out the best in a singer. They are the ones that through diction, musical detail and vocal knowledge as well as being fantastic pianists teach us singers to reach into our souls and sing the voice of our characters.
UBC has three superb coaches: Richard Epp —who with his wonderful love of vowels and wit bestows his wisdom upon us young singers. David Boothroyd —who teaches us how to make our emotion blossom within the boundaries of meter and perfect rhythms. Michael Onwood —who through his passionate playing and detail to line, perfect diction teaches us how to sing the true voice of a character, teaching us to get to the core and truth of the character.