Equal parts knowledgeable, healthy voice instruction; solid, interesting course offerings and unique, exciting performance opportunities make a reputable, solid voice program.

Our Mission Statement states why you should study Voice Performance at Kent State University’s Hugh A. Glauser School of Music:

 "Within a student-centered curriculum and environment, we strive to nurture the development of each student's unique voice.  Our degree programs provide a comprehensive study of vocal instruction and pedagogy, as well as performance effectiveness, repertory and vocal health." 

An Outstanding Faculty

Because of their diverse careers, backgrounds and interests, Kent State University’s voice faculty brings a wide variety of strengths to the world of vocal instruction.  Their combined one hundred years of study, instruction and performing provide teaching and ideas uncommon in most university settings. 

Marla Berg – Nationally recognized as a versatile and compelling performer, Ms. Berg’s experience in performing opera, operetta, concerts, musical theater, and recitals support her teaching objectives to develop the singer’s distinctive voice, build consistent, dependable technique and establish effective stage craft. 

Timothy Culver – As an alumnus of the Vocal Performance degree at Kent State University, Mr. Culver has a unique insight into the minds of the average student in the Hugh A. Glauser School of Music.  His national performances continue to garner praise and invitations to sing with some of the top opera companies and orchestras in the country.

Melissa Davis – Active as a performer in operatic and recital repertoire, Ms. Davis has graduate degrees in both Vocal Performance and Voice Pedagogy. Holding a Singing Health Specialization Certificate, she has invaluable expertise in vocal health. Her teaching focuses on a tension free vocal technique and encourages a full breadth of musicianship. She is the Artistic Director of Nightingale Opera Theatre, giving rare performing opportunities to regional singers.

Dr. Jane Dressler – Recognized as an accomplished musician and teacher of singing, Dr. Dressler has done extensive work in art song and chamber repertory by
American composers.  Her students have been accepted into graduate programs all over the country and have been active in professional performing organizations. 

Dr. Lara Troyer – Although she began as a piano major, Dr. Lara Troyer was drawn to the operatic stage and, ultimately earned three degrees in vocal
performance.  While she performs a variety of repertoire, her passion is educating young people and has brought opera to hundreds of schools in northeast Ohio.  In her studio, Dr. Troyer combines healthy vocal technique and dramatic emphasis.

Dr. Jay White – As a career countertenor and life-long chorister, including an eight year tenure with Chanticleer, a specialist in Western Classical vocal music
written before 1800, and a fellow practitioner of choral and vocal pedagogies, Dr. White brings his myriad experiences in both performance
and practice toward discovering the uniqueness in each student's voice.

Stimulating Course Offerings

As a full accredited institution, Kent State offers standard courses, such as Vocal Pedagogy, Singer’s Diction and Vocal Literature.  In addition, the faculty is also actively engaged in creating courses outside of these which are beneficial to the students and showcase the unique talents and interests of the faculty.  In the past, students have had the opportunity to enroll in American Song Literature, Audition Techniques, Baroque Ornamentation and a class on Fach entitled “A Guide to Operatic Arias”.   

Distinctive Performances

Each year, the voice and opera departments work collaboratively to create singing engagements both on and off the university campus.  In the recent past, Kent State has partnered with Cleveland Opera Theatre and Solon Center for the Arts in performances of I Pagliacci, Madama Butterfly, La Traviata and Il Tabarro.  

Within the School of Music, we offer a scenes program every fall allowing singers to focus on stage craft and the art of learning operatic repertoire.  Each spring, we alternate between a fully-staged opera production complete with orchestra, costumes and sets and a musical operatic recital showcasing our students alongside faculty and alumni. Additionally, we present smaller, chamber and children’s operas which are toured throughout the region.  These educational presentations are done in area schools to teach young art lovers about the wonder and beauty of opera’s four hundred year history.


For more information about our degrees and faculty, feel free to contact Professor Timothy Culver, area coordinator, at 330.672.9240 or by email at tculver@kent.edu.