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Atlanta Opera and Emory partner for middle school voice program | Arts & Culture

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Atlanta Opera and Emory partner for middle school voice program
Atlanta Opera and Emory partner for middle school voice program

ATLANTA -- The Atlanta Opera has partnered with the Emory Voice Center to create a program for middle school choral students.

This two-month "Vocal Immersion Program" (VIP) focuses on teaching opera knowledge and skills to up-and-coming singers at Atlanta's Coan Middle School.

"We hope this program will provide an arts and science approach to enhance vocal understanding and vocal health to these choral students and their teachers," said VIP creator Dr. Adam Klein, assistant director of the Emory Voice Center at Emory University Hospital Midtown.

Coan Middle School recently lost its budget for a voice teacher, which makes it even more important for the students to gain exposure for the arts, Klein said.

"We also hope that this program will benefit children in other schools suffering from the same curriculum challenges," he added.

The program offers choral training with the Atlanta Opera's Will Breystpraak and chorus teachers at Coan Middle School. Participating students will perform several pieces at opening night of Lucia di Lammermoor on Saturday, Nov. 12; they will also watch the production.

"The VIP program is a fantastic way to expose young singers to the art form of opera and encourage them to learn not just about the craft, but about how to take care of their voices and maintain a healthy singing style," said Atlanta Opera education director Emmalee Iden.

Aside from performing, VIP students learn basic vocal anatomy, physiology and pathology from Klein and Marina Gilman, a speech language pathologist with the Emory Voice Center.

The program is funded through an Emory University partnership grant.

For more information about Atlanta Opera programs, visit www.atlantaopera.org.