When Catherine Chapman first joined the Patel Conservatory’s vocal arts program, she had no idea that she would learn so much.
“I originally added the choir class for something to put on my resume. I wanted to go to college for music, but I realized my resume wasn’t
that long,” said
Catherine, 18, began her music journey with piano lessons when she was
just five years old. In middle school, she switched to viola and played with
the Patel Conservatory Youth Orchestra for two years.
When she started at Tampa Preparatory School in eighth grade, she decided to join the vocal program.
“I really like vocal choir. It was small,
but it was also fun. We were always in different ensembles and trios, and we
did some Glee songs.”
As she approached her senior year and realized she needed a bit more
experience for college applications, she signed up for the Patel Conservatory’s
Senior Choir and Senior Ensemble.
“The Patel Conservatory choir is different because it’s more like
an intensive with the music and concert schedule,” said Catherine.
Catherine was surprised to find that not only did her singing improve,
she also found a sense of camaraderie that she hadn’t expected.
“It’s a really fun group of people to be with, they’re all very happy… everyone
is there because they want to be there."
In the fall, she also took private voice lessons with instructor Kristi
Beinhauer. Having seen Beinhauer perform with the St. Petersburg Opera Company,
she enjoyed training with a working professional.
“I realized during my college auditions that my voice had gotten a lot
better. My solo and ensemble vocals had gotten a lot better, and it helped me
lead the choir at school."
At auditions, Catherine was asked to sing in various styles including opera, classical and contemporary. She felt her lessons and classes at the Conservatory helped prepare her more than she anticipated.
"I've learned a lot of different techniques, like breathing techniques that helped me project my voice."
Catherine will start this fall at the University of Florida College of Music. She'd like to major in music education.
In the meantime, she is looking forward to performing in the upcoming Vocal and
Instrumental Concert in May. Her group will perform classic favorites such as Someone to Watch Over Me and Chattanooga Choo Choo.
“We have a lot of choreography and that’s going to be awesome…It’s
going to be super fun,” she said.
Join us for our Vocal and Instrumental Concert on Tues., May 12 at 6:30
p.m. For tickets or more information, click here.
For more information on the Conservatory's vocal arts program, including our summer Voice Intensive, call 813.222.1002, or click here.