Melissa Gilmer holds a Masters of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Miami and a Bachelors of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Akron. She began teaching in 2001 and has been an adjunct professor teaching voice since 2003 at Florida Southern College.
Melissa has extensive experience qualifications in the following disciplines:
Both voice and piano lessons are tailored to each student's individual needs.
During voice lessons a classical technique is taught. Students will work on such things as: correct body alignment, breathing techniques, diction, correct tongue and voice placement, tone quality, freedom of the sound, onsets, register transitions, memorization, musicality, and relaxation techniques. The first part of each voice lesson is dedicated to vocal warmups, where students will practice correct technique. The second half of the lesson is dedicated to the selected songs. Students may also work on sight singing, intonation of intervals, memorization, singing back of patterns, scales and music theory.
During piano lessons, students will concentrate on learning how to read music, including working on learning to recognize the keys on the piano, reading music on the staff, theory, learning rhythms, hand positions, hand strengthening and coordination, memorization, musicality and relaxation . Students will work on warmup exercises, learning scales, chords and arpeggios. Students will also learn to develop their ear, learning by ear tunes.
Melissa is a patient and creative teacher dedicated to developing healthy singing technique! From our very first lesson she has worked closely with me to make sure I am producing a well-supported and beautiful sound without straining my voice. The repertoire we work with is always interesting and fresh as she is familiar with a wide variety of music from classical to contemporary musical theater! I am so glad to have found her studio!
I have had other vocal instructors in the past, but Melissa truly is the most technical and diverse I've learnt from. As a choir and theatre singer for the past 10 years I wanted to broaden my horizons and Melissa has done just that. Singing in languages, such as Italian, French, and German, has not only increased my repertoire and appreciation for Opera, but bettered my diction. Due to her emphasis on proper breathing and technique that leads to full body and mind engagement, my range has improved dramatically, and my head voice is much stronger. Over the past year, she has truly helped me "find my voice" and increased my confidence, to the point that I placed in the gold category at the Florida District Thespians and the silver category at Florida State Thespians, under her instruction with acting, choreography, and help picking songs. Whether you are preparing for competition or college auditions, are musically literate and want to get even better, or you're a complete newbie, Melissa will work with you to help you become a better singer. Not only is she an incredibly talented singer and teacher, but is warm, welcoming and flexible.
Mrs. Melissa was a part of our lives for more than 3 years. She gave piano lessons to both of my children, and also gave voice lessons to my eldest. My kids were always looking forward to their next session. She not only taught them, but encouraged them to practice, and kept them motivated. We also loved her cute dogs! I'm glad my kids got to learn with her, and would recommend Mrs. Melissa without hesitation.
We highly recommend Melissa as a music teacher. She creates a nurturing environment and is a great mentor.
Our daughters are able to sing and play piano at school events due to the strong foundation she has built with them.
Each payment period runs roughly a month, 4 lessons. Payment is due on the first lesson of each new period.
Cancellation/ late policy: If you need to cancel a lesson for any reason ( sickness, conflict of time, will be out of town) you must notify the instructor at least 24 hours in advance. The instructor understands that sometimes emergencies do occur, and will take that into account. Failure to give proper notification will result in the loss of one lesson charge. If you come to your lesson sick, the instructor reserves the right to cancel that lesson. If you arrive late, you will only receive the remaining minutes of your lesson.
Make-up lessons: Make-up lessons may be given on a different day and time of the normal lesson or an extra week may be added on to the end of the payment period.
Termination of lessons: The instructor asks that you give at least a 2 week notice to be able to properly bring lessons to a close.
Referral program: If you refer any students to the instructor and they sign up for lessons, you will receive one free lesson per new student.