Applying Classical Pedagogy To A True American Art Form: Barbershop Sarah Clay with “Sirens of Gotham” and “Voices of Gotham”

Whether or not you currently train singers who are involved in this art form, you will be delighted and rewarded by joining us at the National Opera Center for the skilled and fabulous “Sirens of Gotham” and “Voices of Gotham” with Sarah Clay.

The vibrant international community of competitive Barbershop singing is one of the most under-recognized arenas where singers strive for high-level vocal performance, and those who engage in it are in need of skilled training to meet the goals of the art form with healthy vocal function. Barbershop is also a style of music with different acoustic concerns than classical, musical theatre, pop, or rock; as a result, it offers exciting performance opportunities to many singers whose voices may not be as “at home” in other genres. If, as trainers of singers, we neglect knowledge of this, we neglect the interests and needs of many students who may cross our path. With a presentation that will include an informative talk covering musical, artistic, and timbre expectations of the genre, those in attendance will also have a chance to step into the style themselves, being led in the learning of a “Tag” in the barbershop tradition. Of course, we will also be entertained for a few numbers as the singers strut their stuff in their own dynamic, engaging way.

Sarah Clay is a music educator, vocalist, and choral conductor dedicated to sharing the gift of music through creative education and innovative performance. In addition to directing “Sirens of Gotham”, Sarah manages a private voice studio, where she teaches voice to students of all ages, promotes a sound method of vocal technique, prepares students for performance and auditions, and helps students to explore a wide variety of musical genres.