Lynn Helding serves as Associate Professor of Vocal Pedagogy and studio voice teacher at Thornton School of Music. Ms. Helding is a thought-leader within the dynamic field of contemporary voice science, or vocology, and thus was elected to head the founding of the first non-profit vocology association, PAVA. She is an associate editor of the Journal of Singing and creator/author of the journal’s “Mindful Voice” column, which illuminates current research in the cognitive, neuro- and social sciences as they relate to music teaching, learning and performance. She is in demand as a master teacher and popular lecturer on cognitive topics at universities, conferences and workshops across the United States and Canada.
Her honors and awards include the 2005 National Van Lawrence Fellowship, jointly awarded by the NATS Foundation and the Voice Foundation to those who have “demonstrated excellence in their profession as singing teachers, and have shown knowledge of voice science.”
Lynn Helding’s stage credits include the title role in the first American production of Luigi Rossi’s Orfeo, and leading mezzo-soprano roles with Harrisburg Opera, Nashville Opera, Tennessee Opera Theatre, and Ohio Light Opera. A deep commitment to art song led her to create Made in America, a narrative song recital of works by eighteen American composers which toured Italy, France, England, Germany, Spain, Australia and Iceland, and the theatrical performance piece This is My Letter to the World, a song recital which featured spoken fragments of Emily Dickson’s letters interspersed with Dickinson songs by composers Aaron Copland, Jake Heggie, William Bolcolm and Lori Laitman, which premiered at the Brook Center for Music in New York City. Her highlights in chamber music include the title role in Schoenberg’s Perrot Lunaire, broadcast on Nashville Public Television, and Good Night, written for Lynn Helding and the Baltic Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra by Icelandic composer Thorkell Sigurbjornnson, which premiered at Miller Theatre’s “New Works” series in New York.
Lynn Helding studied voice at the University of Montana, in Vienna, Austria, and at Indiana University, where she was the first singer ever accepted to pursue the prestigious Artist Diploma in Voice. As a student, a transformative experience was winning first place in the Metropolitan Opera National Council northwest regional auditions (Seattle, 1982) and advancing to the national competition on the stage of the Met as one of the youngest singers ever to compete.
She earned her master’s degree in vocal pedagogy from Westminster Choir College of Rider University, and completed the Summer Vocology Institute of the National Center for Voice and Speech in Salt Lake City, where she has returned as guest faculty. Her voice teachers include Esther England, Dale Moore, and Chris Arneson, and voice science mentors Scott McCoy, Ingo Titze and Katherine Verdolini-Abbott. Previous to USC, she taught voice for four years at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music, and more recently served twenty-two years as Associate Professor of Voice and Director of Performance Studies at Dickinson College.
The Deep End of the Pool: Like her flagship course, Lynn Helding’s new association which she co-founded with voice science colleagues from across the United States, dives into physics and anatomy to dissect the workings of the human voice.