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VOICE ACADEMY: Mid-Michigan Singers Slate Programs

April 16, 2016       Leave a Comment
By: Dave Rogers

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Matt Travis, doctoral student promoting summer music program here.

Matt Travis, a doctoral student in choral conducting at the University of Connecticut, also will have the Mid-Michigan Singers and the Mid-Michigan Voice Academy under his baton in a Midland Center for the Arts (MCFTA) educational program this summer.

Faculty members including college professors, doctoral students, nationally significant classical musicians and Broadway stars will unite to provide a multi-generational vocal music experience June 19-25.

Committed guests for Skype sessions include Brian D'arcy James, a Saginaw native of Broadway, television and movie fame; Eric Bourne, Midlander from Fiddler on the Roof on Broadway; Michael Fabiano, internationally acclaimed tenor currently on the cover of Opera News; Betsy Brandt, from Auburn, "Breaking Bad" TV star; and Kelli O'Hara, 2015 Tony winner and six-time nominee.

Master class instructors will include Stephen Lusmann, voice faculty member at the University of Michigan; Tracy Watson, voice faculty member at Central Michigan University; Jim Hohmeyer, MCFTA; Professor Kevin Simons, SVSU; Peter Lightfoot, MSU: Kathryn Wills, Chicago.

Katie Travis will also be giving a live masterclass on-site.

The Mid-Michigan Voice Academy is designed for the serious voice student. Daily "Talk Back" sessions will involve professionals. Masterclasses will follow the "Talk Back" sessions and will see three or four students perform and get feedback from the faculty.

An added component of the program will give students an opportunity to audition for a chamber ensemble. Participation fee for the Voice Academy will be $115.

The Mid-Michigan Singers will be a community choir uniting chorus members from the region. the ensemble will meet daily 7-9 p.m. at a variety of local venues including the Bay City Players, Midland Center for the Arts and Saginaw First United Methodist. Choral music of historical significance will be performed, culminating in a concert at the Midland Center for the Arts. Program fee is $40.

The program is supported by grants from businesses, banks, and charitable foundations. More information can be found at

A native of Bay City, Travis completed his bachelor's degree in Voice Performance at the University of Michigan and his master's degree in Choral Conducting at Penn State University. he served as assistant conductor to the Penn State Men's Glee Club. He conducted performances on domestic and international tours, including in New Zealand.

He also worked as music director of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Centre County, Pennsylvania, from 2006 to 2010. From 2010 - 2014, Matt was the Music Director at Trinity-Pawling School in Pawling, N.Y. In the fall of 2014, he began a doctoral program in choral conducting at the University of Connecticut.

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Dave Rogers

Dave Rogers is a former editorial writer for the Bay City Times and a widely read,
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