Check out the highlights below for a quick snapshot...
if you'd like more details, background, and credentials, read on!
Trained in centuries old Italian classical tradition as well as evidence based CCM (Contemporary Commercial Music) technique.
Whether getting into your dream school, being hired by a professional opera company, or simply singing more freely in any setting, my 25 years of experience and successful student results can help you achieve your goals.
A lifetime of performing adds up to a lot of insight and experience. A teacher who knows the physical and emotional demands, challenges, and rewards of performing can help you take your skills to the next level.
I'm told I never stopped singing when I was little - and as my great luck would have it, my mom was a classical concert pianist so I had an in-house accompanist always at the ready. I got into my first community theater musical in 6th grade (The King and I) and I was hooked. My love of music theater grew into a love of classical singing and even composing. College led to graduate school where I kept singing, continued composing, but added a new and life-changing focus...
...the pedagogy of singing...learning how to teach singing.
At the time, I didn't fully understand how much science, anatomy, and acoustics I'd be delving into, but my nerdy brain ate it up. Meanwhile, my artistic brain kept singing, performing, and writing...and the rest is as they say, history.
As the daughter of a gifted teacher, it was perhaps inevitable that I would become a teacher, too. My mom would say with great earnestness and wisdom, "always remember...you don't just teach music...you teach the PERSON." This is now a guiding principle that forms a thread through all of the work I do.
I love teaching. Love, LOVE teaching. Helping students find the path to breakthrough a barrier. The discovery of something they hoped they could do but didn't know if it was really possible. Seeing the look in someone's eye when they know they just did something better and more beautifully than they ever have. Watching a singer become an artist and an artist become a professional. Being a witness in this process is a gift and an honor.
At the core of our work, we strive to understand the power of intention and clarity of thought. Defining and refining your intention empowers you toward your best results in singing just as much as in life. Understanding how fundamental thought and intention are to your results is the key to your success.
In the end, my purpose is to guide singers toward developing their own vocal wisdom. Just like Dorothy and her ruby slippers, you already have what you need -- I provide guidance in learning how to harness your innate ability. I thrive on helping you illuminate your path while showing you the tools to enable your voice to thrive and your singing to take you where you want to go.
As a soloist, I have found a love and professional home in oratorio repertoire. If this genre is new to you, think of Handel's Messiah. A chorus, an orchestra, and four soloists...and I'm the soprano sitting up front. A local highlight was my debut with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra in their season closing, sold-out concerts of Mendelssohn's "A Midsummer Night's Dream". Other recent favorite solo engagements include Mozart's Requiem, Beethoven's Choral Fantasy, Rossini's Petite Messe Solenelle, Pergolesi's Stabat Mater, Brahms' Requiem, Bach's Cantata's Nos. 51, 82, and 84, and Handel's Judas Maccabeus and Messiah.
Please visit www.teresatierney.com for my artist page and information.
An important part of my musical past, was my professional choral work. I was fortunate to sing with the Dale Warland Singers for 10 years through their final season. Additionally, I was a member of the Beethoven Festival Chorale and the SPCO Chorale. This choral experience gives me special insight into the vocal challenges that choral singers experience and I am so grateful for these years.
One of my favorite things to do, and something I do just for fun, is to sing jazz with my husband, who is a wonderfully versatile guitarist! I used to think I was born in the wrong decade because I adore jazz standards and the Great American Songbook so much. We don't get to do this as much as either of us would like, but I swear there is nothing better than hearing that sweet jazz tone coming through the amp begging me to join him.
Another passion of mine is Irish music. Several years ago, I began studying Irish Gaelic so I could sing Irish folksongs in Irish! Interestingly, while my family is very Irish, I didn't grow up hearing any Irish music. But as an adult, it's been somehow irresistible exploring how the beautiful melodies and mysterious language come together.
Most recently, I've come full circle to where it all began...in musical theater. In my own singing and in my love of coaching these songs with students, I've been able to revisit my first love. When I was young, there was no clear technical approach or researched pedagogy - it seemed like you just "did it" to the best of your ability. Now that I've studied the science behind the technique, it's been rewarding and eye-opening as I get back to belting out old and new favorites.
As an accomplished singer, pianist, teacher, frequent adjudicator and guest clinician, I constantly draw from my diverse educational background for information and inspiration. This experience includes advanced degrees in vocal performance/pedagogy and music theory/composition on fellowship, awards from the Aspen Music Festival, advanced training in CCM vocal pedagogy, and extensive vocal study of Bel Canto technique in Milan, Italy with Maestra Rita Patané. Locally, I have been privileged to be a long term student of Mary Kay Schmidt.
University of St. Catherine, B.A.
University of Colorado at Boulder, M.M.
Shenandoah Conservatory, CCM Vocal Pedagogy Institute
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