Testimonials

Laura Brooks Rice, Professor of Voice at Westminster Choir College at Rider University

“This is going to be a great show! I have heard both Abby Rethwisch Paulson and Mary Beth Nelson on their parts and they sound fantastic! I am certain with Warren Jones and Carleen Graham at the helm it will be an event. Susan Shiplett Ashbaker knows how to pull together a team!”

Johnathon Pape, The Boston Conservatory

“Thank you for the amazing work that you did with our students! Your depth of knowledge is unsurpassed, and it allows you to pinpoint exactly what needs to be addressed in a students singing, presence, interpretation, artistry. But better still, you don’t just identify singers’ issues — you give them so many tools to actually fix the problems. I love that you help them know how to practice in a productive way, while still getting enormous joy out of making music. You’re the best!!”
Johnathon Pape, Director of Opera Studies, The Boston Conservatory

Alex Clark, Opera Singer

“….in my first rehearsal with the conductor he stopped and asked who my coach was and said you’ve done a great job training me on the role”  Alex Clark, Opera Singer (Musiklehrer, Ariadne auf Naxos, Strauss)

Paul M. Speiser, Westminster Choir College

“I always look forward to my class with Ms. Ashbaker.  She is passionate about her work with singers, always encouraging them to succeed.  She is savvy and organized, with high expectations of her students.  I appreciate her thorough and organized approach to each classroom presentation.”

Paul M. Speiser

Class Participant

“Susan is extremely knowledgable and brings her expertise to each and every class.  Her constant optimism and call, positive demeanor is infections! ” Class participant (from anonymous evaluation), How to Learn an Opera Role (Westminster Choir College of Rider University)

Steven Brennfleck, Tenor

“It is hard to believe that it took almost 6 years of college level voice study for me to realize that no one had taught me HOW to learn to sing.  How does one find the connection between music and text?  How does one internalize an aria or recit to the point where one becomes a vessel for expressing the composer’s intent?  What tools can one utilize to learn that tongue-twisting line of text or that long chromatic cadenza?  This is why Susan Ashbaker’s class was so important and beneficial to me.  There we learned that the “product” will only be as good as the “process” we employ to get it and what tools are at our disposal to do so.”  Steven Brennfleck, tenor

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