COOPER VOICE STUDIO POLICIES & PROCEDURES


WELCOME!...

Studying music is an incredible lifetime investment. The benefits of playing an instrument and/or singing are numerous and include greater self-confidence, creativity, expressive freedom, attentiveness, perseverance, improved concentration and communication, command of vernacular and foreign languages, higher test scores, strong neural connections, lower blood pressure and anxiety levels, and so much more! So, let’s get started and take the journey together!


WHAT TO EXPECT FROM ME:

Professional instruction of vocal and breathing mechanics, repertoire selection guidance, performance coaching, song interpretation and stylistic artistry among a myriad of genres including opera, art song, musical theater, jazz, blues, pop, folk, etc. Performance, audition, competition, master class opportunities, etc.


WHAT I EXPECT FROM YOU:

Consistent attendance.Diligent and focused work during lesson. *Homework*/practice on your own, between lessons.Learning correct pitches, rhythms, dynamics, breathing, etc. for repertoire. A passion for singing. An open mind and heart for trying new things, experimenting with – and discovering - new sounds, creating and evolving characters, communicating story through song.


STUDIO LOCATION:

California, MD / 20619

Studio Landline: 240-237-8318

Cell Phone: 301-861-7981


PARKING: Please comply with the parking logistics image provided by Ms. Cooper.

 

WHAT TO BRING WITH YOU TO LESSONS:

● Sheet music in a designated lesson binder, and music repertoire books

● Recording device

● Pencil

● Water

The instructor sometimes provides copies of sheet music, however, students will also be required to print PDFs or purchase music to build their own libraries and comply with copyright laws.Some helpful resources include:

  • amazon.com 
  • sheetmusicplus.com      
  • musicnotes.com      
  • imslp.com      
  • newmusicaltheatre.com      
  • contemporarymusicaltheater.com      
  • classicalvocalrep.com

 

LESSON FEES:

● $50 per 60min

● $25 per 30min

Fee includes the following:  Lesson instruction, piano rehearsal accompaniment recording fees, mailings of hard copies of all repertoire, paper/ink/supplies for printing repertoire, repertoire purchases (sheet music, repertoire books, etc.), organization and planning of master classes and recitals, etc.

 

PAYMENT:

  • Students are required to pay the total for one month of lessons on or before the first lesson date of that month.
  • Credit card payments may be completed via My Music Staff – PayPal.
  • Please make checks payable to “Go-DIVA! Productions, Inc.” Please list dates of that month’s lessons in the Memo line (i.e.“1/11, 1/18, 1/25”).
  • For cash payments, provide a note/post-it/etc. that indicates your name and the dates of that month’s lessons.
  • Please place payment in the white ceramic bowl located on the wood divider shelf between dining room and kitchen/dining room.
  • Payments received after the first lesson of the month may result in a Late Fee.

 

ATTENDANCE/CANCELLATION:

  • Students are expected to arrive on time. If delayed, please text your ETA.The lesson will end on time, regardless of arrival time.
  • Students must provide 24hrs advanced notice of cancellation. (Fees will not be refunded for lessons canceled with less notice than required above.)
  • In cases where a student provides more than 24hrs notice of cancellation, and specifically requests a make-up lesson, Ms. Cooper will make every effort to do so.
  • Students are expected to prioritize their lesson slot reservation. There are limited slots available in the Studio with an active Wait List of others who are waiting to take lessons.
  • If a student is aware of a future absence within the month, omit payment for that lesson (when paying at the beginning of the month) and notify Ms. Cooper so that other students waiting for lessons may take advantage of the open slot.Be sure to check your schedule for upcoming rehearsals, performances, vacations, and other activities that will conflict with your lesson slot in future weeks and months.Advanced notice and planning makes everyone happy!New scheduling procedures are underway through the My Music Staff website program!
  • Students who are cast in school/community productions, participating in choirs, etc. MUST LIST THEIR LESSON TIME SLOT as a recurring commitment when submitting their schedule of activities so that directors are clearly informed of your serious commitment to the Cooper Voice Studio, which provides the vocal training for a successful and healthy performance in said production.
  • Lessons canceled by the instructor will be rescheduled if and when possible.
  • In case of inclement weather, Ms. Cooper will - in most cases - adhere to the decisions made by public schools and government facilities. Emails/texts will be sent to confirm final decisions about lessons, with safety being the ultimate priority.


COMMUNICATION:

  • To notify Ms. Cooper of tardiness or late cancellation, PLEASE TEXT the information to Ms. Cooper’s cell phone (301-861-7981).This is important as it is likely that several hours of consecutive lessons are taking place before your slot and it is impossible to check email. A text can be seen during a lesson without interrupting it, but still provides the information in a timely manner.
  • To correspond about other less time-sensitive topics, PLEASE EMAIL Ms. Cooper at godivaproductions@gmail.com
  • Calls are welcome, but note that it is more difficult to reach me by this means due to a constant flow of private lessons, rehearsals, performances, etc. during which I cannot answer the phone. Do feel free to leave a voicemail.
  • Please inform Ms. Cooper of any physical, emotional, or developmental challenges that may affect the student’s means of processing information or response to circumstances. Consideration will always be given to provide the best possible learning environment.
  • A secret Cooper Voice Studio Facebook page provides a secure and social place to share singing-related info, announce upcoming productions featuring studio members, share and discuss performance videos, etc.Studio members are invited by Ms. Cooper to “join” the page.
  • Please adhere to all deadlines assigned by the instructor. These deadlines (i.e. responses to emails about participation, etc.) are never arbitrary. They are carefully selected to provide ample time for logistical configuration and coordination with the schedules of many other people involved.


STUDIO ETIQUETTE:

Students should enter through the front door. If you enter slightly before your scheduled time, you may take a seat in the dining room until your lesson time begins.Parents/Guardians of minors are welcome to observe, at the discretion of the student and his/her comfort with your presence. Wifi is available for those who desire internet access.

 

LESSON SCHEDULING:

  • Lesson slots are assigned on a first-come-first-served basis.Generally, the slot a student chooses remains theirs throughout the Fall and Spring “semesters”. If a student needs to adjust their weekly slot reservation, please contact Ms. Cooper via email. Note: Scheduling procedures will soon be more streamlined via My Music Staff website program.
  • Summertime often results in adjustments to the schedule due to the public school schedule break, a shift in work schedule, etc. Please inform Ms. Cooper as soon as possible if such an adjustment is preferred for the Summer months (usually June – August).
  • Students who wish to stop taking voice lessons must provide 30 days notice so that wait-listers can be informed and prepare to take over your slot.


PRACTICING:

  • Quality and consistency in practice is emphasized over quantity. A very focused, deliberate 20min practice session is far more effective than an hour of unfocused, goal-less, direction-less practice.
  • Specify your goals and intentions before you start your practice.
  • Set a timer or check a clock. You’ll be surprised how quickly the time flies when you are focused on achieving a specific goal, and how much more successful you are at progressing   technically and artistically.
  • Your commitment to practicing outside of your lesson time is directly related to your development as a musician, technician, and artist.


WELLNESS & ILLNESS:

  • Stay healthy! You are a vocal athlete; your body is your instrument! It is your responsibility to maintain optimal health. Avoid overuse of your voice, drink lots of water, choose good nutrition, stay physically active, and get plenty of rest.
  • Please do not attend your lesson if you are ill and contagious. Viruses can quickly spread from just one contagious student who brings an illness into the studio.
  • If you are NOT contagious, but still not in perfect voice, do consider attending your lesson. There are many lesson activities that do not require singing including ear-training,   comparative listening to singers, choosing repertoire, etc.


RECITALS / MASTER CLASSES / COMPETITIONS & AUDITIONS:

  • Recitals and Master Classes are always voluntary, though highly recommended as an integral tool to assess and test your hard work throughout the season. They are a unique opportunity to work and perform with a live pianist, to share your repertoire with an appreciative audience, and achieve the immense satisfaction of a public solo performance. They are also excellent practice for auditions and competitions.
  • Generally, there are TWO RECITALS per year: one in Spring (May), one in Winter (November/December).
  • There are usually FOUR MASTER CLASSES per year: two prior to each recital.See separate document with details regarding the purpose and procedures of Recitals and Master Classes. Email announcements will provide scheduled dates and other important information.
  • Competition and audition opportunities will be provided for students who are advanced enough and eligible to qualify. Please adhere to all deadlines assigned by the instructor. These deadlines (i.e. responses to emails about participation, etc.) are never arbitrary. They are carefully selected to provide ample time for logistical configuration and coordination with the schedules of many other people involved.


STUDIO PIANIST / ACCOMPANIST:

We have the privilege of having two professional studio pianists on staff – Erin Tennyson and Robert Hayes – who provide some of our piano accompaniment rehearsal recordings, accompany master class sessions, recital performances, auditions and competitions.

● NOTE: Students are required to pay their assigned pianist directly for master classes, recitals, and any extra rehearsal sessions that are scheduled with them.Current fee is $20 per student, per event. This amount is subject to change, based on various event details (i.e. NATS Regionals, etc.). Cash or checks (made out to “Erin Tennyson” or “Robert Hayes”).


PRINTABLE POLICIES & PROCEDURES DOCUMENT:

Please print the Cooper Voice Studio Policies & Procedures document to keep for your records.  

Please sign, date, and submit the Cooper Voice Studio CONTRACT found on the last page of the document.