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ANN BALTZ

MASTER TEACHER

BIOGRAPHY

Throughout her extensive career as a creator, educator, director, and pianist, Ann Baltz has been led by the principle that success is a direct result of how well a person’s whole being has been informed, nurtured, and cultivated. It is this principle that has inspired her lifelong passion for empowering performers to combine technical prowess with courage, authenticity, and freedom. Ann’s desire to create a holistic, all-encompassing approach to performance training culminated in the curriculum that became the foundation of OperaWorks™, a nonprofit organization providing innovative training that has changed the landscape of performance education for over 30 years. As artistic director of the organization, Ann was the first to incorporate yoga, improvisation, business classes, conducting, and pastiche performances with contemporary themes into singer training, inspiring other programs to incorporate similar curricula over the years.


Participants have often credited OperaWorks™ as being one of the most transformative events in their life and work, and for many it was a catalytic experience that propelled them toward international careers. Rising opera stars including Jeni Houser, Duke Kim, Rainelle Krause, Vanessa Becerra, Felicia Moore, Amber Braid, and Nicholas Newton, established pros including Michael Chioldi and Randall Scotting, and prominent industry leaders including Kamala Sankaram, Beth Morrison, Priti Gandhi, and Adam Cavagnaro are among the over 2000 singers, voice teachers, coaches, directors, and conductors counted as alumni, with over 70% of all alumni reporting as active professional performers, educators, and/or arts administrators. [read more...]

CRITICAL ACCLAIM


"... but Ann’s warmth and encouragement are hard to resist…” – Dan Hunter-Holly, Associate Dean, College of Fine Arts, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley


“In her teaching, Ann releases singers from the mindset of “you don’t do this well enough” through a variety of improvisation-based tools and activities.  Generally, this is scary for singers who have never been asked to make their own choices or to do anything beyond what is in the score, but Ann’s warmth and encouragement are hard to resist - most singers take the leap of faith in following her down the path. Of course, in improvisation, it’s not really following but becoming an equal partner in the creation of something new.  And in recognizing this ability to create, singers learn that their authenticity as performers is there, waiting for permission to take over.  The “you don’t do this well enough” thoughts are negated by the desire to create and communicate as an artist."

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"... a tremendous impact on the students, empowering them to be their own individual artists.” – Jim Haffner is the opera director at University of the Pacific in CA


“I think what strikes me the most about Ann’s work with the students is the safe space that she creates for them. So that they are free to be loud and wrong. The exercises that she has created to nurture their improvisatory talents, resonate strongly with them. As recently as last week, they were still quoting improvised lines from that work last August. As we get deeper into the rehearsal process for this year’s main stage work, we are still referring back to the work that we did last semester. Ultimately, and has a talent for coaching a student without telling them what to do. Rather, coaxing the work from their own creative talent. This has a tremendous impact on the students, empowering them to be their own individual artists. And again the effects are quite clear in our rehearsals. In addition, the improv work that we did online in spring of 2021 has become a blueprint for the students. How to effectively prepare a performance and create a character prior to the first meeting with the director, voice teacher and coach. Our voice faculty in particular saw the change in the students. And they will often comment on the difference between students' work pre-AB and post-AB. Pre- and post-Ann!"

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REPRESENTATIVES

Shawn Marie Jeffery

Vice President | Classical & Creatives


Lisa Bremer 

Operations & Finance Manager

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