Voice of the Future

Junior gets opportunity for additional voice training through St. Louis Opera Theater

Many students in choir audition for a chance to sing in the All-Suburban Choir, but junior Ava Chancellor has gotten the rare opportunity to join the Artists in Training program at the St. Louis Opera Theater. Out of the abundance of choir students that audition, only 20 are selected to work with voice coaches and teachers.

For choir students who are wanting to take their skills to the next level, this program would be a great start.

“This is a wonderful program and it’s a great opportunity for a lot of young, budding artists in the St. Louis area. It’s a very unique program in the United States,” Webster University Professor of Voice Martha J. Hart said.

The Artists in Training Program allows students like Chancellor to improve on their skills.

“It’s like you’re on a baseball team and you’re getting extra lessons for pitching or something…” OHS choir teacher Chelsea Ayres said. “She’s becoming an even better singer and then she brings all of that training into the choir, so it makes our whole choir better.”

This program not only individually focuses on one singer at a time, but it also provides enhancing experiences.

“There are recitals, there are special guest artists who come in and work with them and get them ready for…maybe for a future as a vocal performer or just to improve their personal skills,” Hart said.

Chancellor has taken up this chance to work with professionals in order to help her future career.

“You can get a lot of scholarship money by auditioning to be a part of university choirs…” Chancellor said. “I am planning on majoring in music, and they will help you record your audition to send to schools that are out of state.”

She has worked hard to obtain this position and her accomplishments are acknowledged by many.

“She is such a team player,” Ayres said. “She always comes ready—any class, any ensemble that she’s a part of—she knows her part.”

Chancellor will be able to utilize her involvement in this program for other opportunities to come.

“Ava is going to have such a rich background in training and technique, so anything she wants to do with singing, she’ll have a really wide world opened to her,” Ayres said.

Chancellor hopes to achieve more goals within this field.

“It’s important to focus on pursuing what you like to do,” Chancellor said, “and if you really like to do music, which I do, then I would like to try as hard as I can to continue doing that for the rest of my life.”