In the Loop
Student Stories : Aug 20, 2018

Voice and Vegas: Gators bring their research to the 2018 NATS National Conference

Amid big city festivities and a hot desert climate, the National Association of Teachers of Singing held its 2018 National Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada this past June. The UF School of Music was well represented by voice professors Brenda Smith and Ronald Burrichter, along with students Lindsey Jackson, Mary Katherine Boring, Dominique Baeta and Sabrina Baeta.

The NATS conference featured sessions and workshops around the theme of advocacy, with the opening ceremony featuring a first-ever NATS Community Sing. Presentations were given by leading voice science and pedagogy experts, including Dr. Johann Sundberg. Opera stars Christine Brewer and Stephanie Blythe showcased both their talents and charm in a masterclass, talkback and on the recital stage with collaborative pianist Craig Terry.

On June 23rd, Dr. Brenda Smith spoke on an authors’ panel for her newly published book, So You Want to Sing for a Lifetime. The title is one of the newest additions to the NATS sponsored So You Want to Sing series, and presents methods for a long, healthy life of singing. Students enjoyed having their questions answered and learning about the impact the voice can play in all seasons of life.

The next day, Dr. Brenda Smith and students presented their research at the NATS Poster Paper Session. Titled “Making Studio Voice Relevant at a Research 1 Institution”, the project explored the resources available to voice students seeking interdisciplinary opportunities within a large university environment. The poster highlighted the wonderful arts and science collaborations already under place at UF (Arts in Medicine and the Center for Undergraduate Research), and presented ideas for future endeavors that other institutions may implement within their own programs.