Today I wanted to share my own personal journey with voice lessons on the blog. I hope you enjoy my story.
I was born in Durham, NC and my parents say I arrived in this world screaming and didn't stop for 3 months. I like to remind them that I was just warming up my vocal folds :)
My grandmother studied voice in college, so I can confidently say I inherited her good genes. She encouraged me to sing and I honestly can't remember a time when I wasn't singing. I sang in the children's choir at church, at school and did various music-related summer camps. I still remember my first solo in elementary school! It was "Angel" by Sarah McLachlin. Yep, that's a #throwback
From that point, I never stopped singing. I began voice lessons at 13, after my best friend started taking them. She is now a thriving music therapist and I am SO proud of her. Together, we attended competitions and sang duets at backyard parties, holiday parties, etc. I loved my first voice teacher and I am so thankful for the time she spent cultivating my young voice and leading me on the path to sustainable singing.
It wasn't until high school that I thought about singing as a career choice. I tore my ACL and meniscus playing soccer, so I had some down time to audition for the school musical. That year, we did My Fair Lady. I was thrilled to play Eliza Doolittle and had the time of my life! I began applying for college and knew that I wanted to declare a music major. I auditioned and was accepted to UNC Chapel Hill and spent 4 wonderful years there singing, acting and honing my craft. Next up was graduate school at NYU. It was there that I discovered my deep love for teaching, as well. I credit the fabulous music teachers I had growing up and in my college/graduate studies for giving me the tools I needed to succeed as both a performer and a teaching artist.
Upon graduation, I moved to Mercer County, NJ! Why am I here, you ask? It's exactly half way between NYC and Philadelphia. Those are both huge music cities with a lot going on! I'm so grateful to be in a place where I can access both major cities easily. Plus, I find that this area reminds me a bit of NC. There are so many cute towns next to large stretches of farmland. I didn't know that New Jersey could be so beautiful! It is a joy to be living here and the people that I've met while teaching voice have been some of the nicest I've ever met. That's saying a lot coming from a girl from the South!
Thank you for being a part of my continued voice lessons journey. Once a student, now a teacher! Just remember, you have to start somewhere. I would be honored to give you your start at Finely Tuned Voice Lessons.
See you soon!
Maria Palombo is a Voice Instructor and Singer living in Central NJ. She is the founder of Finely Tuned Voice Lessons, a private voice studio in Mercer County, NJ.