Vocal Pedagogy,Musical Theatre,Commerical Singing Styles,Opera,Research
B.M., Shenandoah University; M.M., University of Houston
- Edrie Means Weekly, a professional crossover singer, is a recognized expert in training singers for classical repertoire and all styles of contemporary commercial music(CCM) (including Musical Theatre, Cabaret, Country, Jazz, Pop, Rock,R&B, Contemporary Christian, Praise, Gospel) and is in demand for master classes on CCM voice and Opera performance. Her students have been heard on American Idol, on recordings and have appeared in films, on Broadway and Off -Broadway, on TV, in cabaret, national tours, regional theatre, concerts and opera worldwide. Student Josh Bernstein was 4th place out of 45,000 entries for the Kidz Star USA 2011 Talent Search. She is a author of research published in The Journal of Voice regarding the teaching of the Broadway voice. Weeklys first study, published in the The Journal of Voice in 2003, lead to establishing the Shenandoah Universitys CCM Vocal Pedagogy Institute, which has attracted over 600 people national and international (11 different countries) voice teachers, conductors, coaches and professional singers to the SU campus for the past six summers. As an Institute faculty member, Edrie taught the post-certification course on singing styles (musical theatre, pop, jazz, country, R&B,etc.). She has been on faculty of Care of the Professional Voice, the ground breaking scientific conference on voice care worldwide and has presented several papers and workshops. She is a frequent guest Clinician for State and Regional NATS as well as universities nationwide. Edrie was one of six NATS members appointed by the current NATS President Donald Simonson to explore and help the creation of the NATS sponsored National Music Theatre Competition to be held at the 2012 Conference in Orlando, Florida. Edrie served as a judge for the Semi-finals. She has also authored some exciting revisions to the musical theatre categories for the Mid-Atlantic National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) Region. Next Summer Edrie is proud to have been asked to be a Master Teacher for the NATS Intern Program in Nashville, TN 2013.
- As a performing artist she has been in demand as a contemporary music specialist. She has sung in the world premieres of works by Philip Glass, Jacob Druckman, and in Kaballah by Stewart Wallace, in which the role of Binah was written for her and a CD recording made with Koch Records. For Dominick Argentos The Dream of Valentino, broadcast by NPR, she created the role of Jean Aker; for Philip Glass The Making of The Representative of Planet 8, broadcast by PBS, she created the role of Klin. Most recently she was standby for Patti LuPone in the title role of Regina at the Kennedy Center.
- Nationally and internationally, she has appeared in leading roles with the Houston Grand Opera, Washington Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, Cleveland Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Opera Mid-Michigan, Opera Grand Rapids, Pittsburgh Playhouse, and the State Opera of Cairo, Egypt. Her many performances have been broadcast nationally and internationally by NPR and PBS.
- In addition to her operatic roles she has sung extensively in leading roles of musical and operetta production. Edrie was standby for Patti LuPone in the title role of Regina at the Kennedy Center and returned to the Kennedy Center last spring for the new Sondheim production of Follies starring Bernadette Peters, Elaine Paige, Ron Raines and Danny Burstein.Lead roles in musicals theatre including My Fair Lady, Carousel, The King and I, West Side Story, Show Boat, The Sound of Music, The Merry Widow and Zorba to name a few. Recitals in the United States and Canada include a New York City debut in the New York Festival of Songs Series with pianist Michael Barrett and Guest artist with symphony orchestras of Houston, Cleveland, Corpus Christi, Victoria, and the National Symphony.
- Recitals in the United States and Canada include a New York City debut in the New York Festival of Songs Series with pianist Michael Barrett and Guest artist with symphony orchestras of Houston, Cleveland, Corpus Christi, Victoria, and the National Symphony. While continuing her singing career, she has begun directing opera; most recently, The Medium and le Nozze di Figaro. She was last seen nationally and internationally on TV in the role of Suzy in the opera La Rondine directed by Marta Domingo, which was released on DVD by Decca in 2009.
- In June 2008 Edrie presented another research paper and a workshop at the Voice Science Foundation Annual Symposium: Care of the Professional Voice held in Philadelphia on Vocal Health and Crossing Over From Classical to Musical Theatre and the teaching of the Broadway voice. The Voice Science Foundation is an International Organization of physicians, scientists, speech-language pathologists, performers, and teachers dedicated to groundbreaking research and education on all areas concerning the human voice.
- Edrie was invited to sing at the Birthday Party of Academy Award winner film/TV/Broadway star Celeste Holm. Edrie was also invited to sing for three separate award Gala concerts for Film and Stage stars Dame Julie Andrews, Ben Vareen and Opera singer Martina Arroyo and film star Eli Wallach.
- Edrie has performed principle roles with well-known artists such as Placido Domingo, Renee Fleming, Bernadette Peters, Linda Lavin, Elaine Paige, Rosiland Elias,Timothy Noble, Dihann Carroll, Tony Randall, Tommy Tune, Mirella Freni, Karita Mattilla, Suzanne Mentzer, Renato Capecchi, Paige OHare and long time friends the late Eddie Bracken, Marquita Lister and Denyce Graves.
- PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS:
- Actors Equity Association(AEA), American Guild of Musical Artists(AGMA), Opera America, Voice Foundation, National Association of Teachers of Singing(NATS), Music Teachers National Association(MTNA), Virginia Music Teachers Association(VMTA). She is on the Board of Directors for the Virginia NATS and Musical Theatre Consultant for Mid-Atlantic NATS.
- FROM THE PRESS: OPERA, MUSICAL THEATRE, CONCERT
- "What a Beautiful voice and Expressive singing - that's the way songs need to be sung. Songs need to tell a story and Edrie told the story!" Celeste Holm (Broadway/Film/TV Star)"Edrie not only has a beautiful voice, but was very expressive and sensitive with the text." Angela Lansbury (Film/Broadway/TV Star)
- She is the one person I have heard who nicely sings in and out of each style effortlessly! Richard Miller, International Pedagogue and Operatic Tenor
- Soprano Edrie Means sang brilliantly as Klin, the fruit maker. Opera News, Opera Magazine, London, Los Angeles Times, William Albright, PLANET 8 (World Premiere, Houston Grand Opera)
- Soprano Edrie Means offered superb work as the maid Despina. She combined superb tonal clarity with vivid characterization. Houston Chronicle, Charles Ward, COSI FAN TUTTE (Houston Grand Opera)
- Two of the finest performances of the evening belonged to Edrie Means as Carrie Pipperidge, and Marc Embree as Jigger Craigin. Means has a beautiful voice, which hopefully will be heard in future Grand Rapids productions. The Grand Rapids Press, Julie Ridenour
- Friday night, Edrie Means made the rest of her performance as radiant as her first appearance. Means commanded the stage with her presence, and she led the rest of the cast in a beautifully staged production. The Beacon Journal, Elaine Guregian, Maria in The Sound of Music Cleveland State Theatre
- And highly impressive in this tuneful cast of more than 40 members was Edrie Means, who sang a hair-raising rendition of Climb Every Mountain as the Mother Abbess. Washington Post, Leonard Hughes
- Talented Edrie Means sang with style such Gershwin numbers as Someone To Watch Over Me, and My Mans Gone Now. Even the verses were attractive. Means spectacular voice, effective acting, and depth of emotion should take her far. Her accompanist, Ruth Tomforhde, provided the perfect setting, making every nuance of Means even more effective. The Eagle, Thyra Plass, NPR
- OTHER QUOTES:
- "Edrie Means Weekly is a plethora of knowledge in the musical theatre styles! Her stylistic flexibility was impressive. Her positive reinforcement created a safe environment to experiment. She was able to adjust to various competency levels without skipping a beat." 2007 CCM Vocal Pedagogy Institute Musical Theatre Styles Class participant
- Edrie Means Weekly is a superb operatic soprano, a powerful music theatre belter, and an experienced and highly skilled voice expert in many other styles. She is an excellent role model for the teachers who come to study vocal techniques for the various styles of Contemporary Commercial Music (music theater, jazz, gospel, rock, pop, Rhythm and Blues, country, folk, and alternative), as she is both a master of the vocal production demands and an experienced singing teacher. She guides others by her example and with detailed information about the musical and performance needs that singers must meet in order to have successful careers in any style. Jeannette LoVeti, Singing Voice Specialist
- Edrie Means Weekly has been of immeasurable help to both the Virginia District and the Mid-Atlantic Region of NATS. A performer herself, she is very knowledgeable in both the pedagogy and repertoire of musical theater as well as classical singing, and we have benefited from her generosity of time and expertise as our consultant. Edrie has worked tirelessly to help our region develop recent changes in the music theater category requirements, putting us at the cutting edge of the national organization. We look forward to her leading a music theater pedagogy master class at our Regional Spring Conference at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina on Friday, April 3, 2009.Dr. John Blizzard, governor, Mid-Atlantic Region National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS)
- Edrie Means Weekly speaks knowledgeably about vocal technique for both the classical and music theater singer. She is energetic, supportive and constructive as she works with individual students. A wonderfully gifted singer in her own right, she openly shares her expertise, and her beautiful voice to demonstrate healthy use of the voice for all styles of music. She is a must-have clinician for your Musical Theater students. Maryann Sewell MD-DC NATS
- A truly unique vocal talent, Edrie Means Weekly can capture the essence of just about any style of singing and then teach others how to sing that style with the same healthy ease. Deborah Thurlow, State Governor MD-DC NATS
- "The musical theater revisions developed by Edrie Means Weekly were adopted for use by the Mid-Atlantic Region of NATS, which includes South Carolina. As president of SCNATS, I found that the revisions created heightened interest in singing styles appropriate for musical theater. Lively discussions among our teachers provided the opportunity to educate and inspire. Edrie's leadership made preparing students and teachers for musical theater auditions both a challenge and a chance for growth." Sharyn Mapes , President SC NATS
The CCM Vocal Pedagogy Institute
he official website of the Shenandoah's Contemporary Commercial Music Vocal Pedagogy Institute, since 2003.