By Barbara Rowley, ExploreBigSky.com Contributor
BIG SKY – As the buzz grows around the Warren Miller Performing Arts Center’s future opening, one local artist with a previously low profile is offering opportunities never previously available.
Heaven Phillips, a classically trained professional performer who has appeared on Broadway, will offer vocal lessons starting this summer. She’ll launch an entire vocal education program in September for children and adults. Phillips worked with Big Sky Broadway, a local kids program, earlier this summer.
“It is rewarding to see how introducing children to different techniques can really make their confidence as singers and performers, and in themselves, soar.”
Phillips retired after performing for more than a decade on various New York stages and internationally with the Obie award-winning company The Builder’s Association, where she won two Obies personally. However, she decided to re-enter the musical fold as a vocal coach with this year’s Big Sky Broadway production of “The Wizard of Oz.”
Starting in August, Phillips will accept children from 10 years old through adult clients and will teach lessons in student’s homes in private 45-minute or 30-minute classes. She anticipates showcasing her students’ achievements in at least two recitals during the school year, combining her students’ performances with students from local piano teacher Klaudia Kosiak.
Phillips began formal, classical training at age 16 and continued her studies at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, where she earned a BFA with honors and garnered the coveted Best Actress award in her graduating class. She has studied classically with Met Opera and Carnegie Hall alum Jan Wilson, and also with preeminent New York vocal teacher Jeff Halpern. Phillips is also trained in Grotowski movement-based acting and singing techniques, which free up the body and as a result, the voice, studying with Jonathan Hart (Hart School of Music in Paris) and Lisa Sokolov at Tisch Experimental Theater Group.
In addition to her vocal talents, Phillips is an accomplished classical and contemporary actress, songwriter (for television and commercials) and tap dancer.
Why should children and adults care about improving their vocal abilities? Phillips says regardless of whether you pursue a professional career or just want to be able to sing around the campfire confidently, vocal lessons will “awaken and inspire your musical ability, improve your general health through breath-control and various movement techniques, give you a general sense of confidence and self esteem, and cultivate the underlying talent the lies in us all. Plus—it is extremely fun.”
For more information on Phillips’ classes, contact Heaven at firstname.lastname@example.org or (406) 209-5149.