Tell us a little about the music you make. I’m currently working on Choral arrangements of gospel or popular songs for different events that I lead or coordinate.
How did your musical education start? My love for music started at home, especially from my dad who was an arranger but my formal education came when I decided to study music – vocal performance at Columbia College. There I learned and gained a better understanding of how music is made, created and works together. That was a beautiful experience, for me to put my natural talent together with learning the theory of music.
What’s been the most challenging aspect of your musical education? Choosing a performance track in college rather than an education track where I could get certified by the state and more easily prove my ability to teach. Although I believe that teaching is a gift, not a choice, it has been harder to find employment as an educator without having those credentials.
Tell us about your current music goals. My current music goals include making and arranging songs that are very specific for each listening audience, and staying current on most popular choral arranging. Always listening, learning and growing.
What music gets you excited about making music? A lot of music gets me excited about making music. It depends because I sing in a lot of different genres. If it has a beautiful melody or has great harmony or a funky beat then I am attached instantly. Something has to pull me in with a song and it’s usually something with the vocals.
Why did you decide to teach music? I think teaching chose me! I will add that my mom and dad were educators but mainly being a singer, especially in choirs and ensembles always fascinated me how other teachers broke down parts and got a group to sound so harmonious. I LOVE doing that and found it very easy to find all the parts in a song and give them to others. I enjoy people and I love that interactive dynamic of creating something beautiful when singing together.
How long have you been involved with Intonation? Since 2015 – I’m going on my 4th school year season this fall.
Do you have any artistic projects you’re currently working on? The projects that I cultivate mainly center around choral music in many forms. I recently performed at a wedding in which Chance the Rapper was a guest and he captured this clip and added it to his story on Instagram. (See video on right)
Why do you believe music education is important? I believe music education should be a part of all curriculum because it affords everyone an opportunity to express who they are or how they feel through music. I love that we can all learn and understand how music is made but I also am grateful that music has been created in so many of us and that we can express it and share it with others as an extension of who we are. Music education gives us a formalized way to understand each other. I do believe that music is very personal and individual but as we share and express it we will see that we have way more in common than what makes us different.