Soprano Adrienne Danrich Shares Techniques with Music Students at a Master Class Before Performance

March 6, 2013

Soprano Adrienne Danrich shares techniques with music major and aspiring opera singer Elizabeth Payne at Monday's Master Class in Marian Anderson Music Center

Soprano Adrienne Danrich shares techniques with music major and aspiring opera singer Elizabeth Payne at Monday's Master Class in Marian Anderson Music Center

Three promising voice students from Cheyney University of Pennsylvania's Department of Humanities and Communication Arts were chosen to attend a master class with soprano Adrienne Danrich on Monday morning, March 4.  Ms. Danrich was on campus to present “This Little Light of Mine:  The Stories of Marian Anderson and Leontyne Price" for the Arts and Lectures Series.

Soprano Elizabeth Payne seemed to put any nervousness aside as she stepped on the stage to sing Porgi amor, from Mozart's opera Le Nozze di Figaro with a clear, resonant voice. Afterward, Danrich offered some advice.  "You are your best teacher - inside your body you have to know what you feel." The CU senior and aspiring opera singer is going to Hampton, VA this month to participate in the Mid-Atlantic National Association of Negro Business Professional Women’s Club, Inc. competition.  In addition, she will present her senior recital and travel to Boston in May to compete in the Auditions Plus Vocal Competition.

Janina Jones, the second performer, sang Edward Boatner’s arrangement of the spiritual Oh, What a Beautiful City.   Ms. Danrich remarked about her distinct vocal quality: “I love your instrument,” Danrich said about Janina's distinct vocal quality.  Danrich went on to offer suggestions for enhancing the delivery of the text.  “It is our job is to explain the text. The song means something - think about the words, how you feel about them and make an impression. Our job is to communicate,” she stated.

Craig Brown-Dickens, a sophomore, was the final performer and offered an arrangement of the spiritual Were You There? by Marques L. A. Garrett, director of the Cheyney University Concert Choir.  Ms. Danrich told the audience of singers, faculty, and family supporters, "I like this song! I'm going to use it."  She then told Craig "Find that hook - that note - that sound in it - that goes back and over and use it."

Ms. Danrich encouraged the students and gave feedback throughout the session and reminded them that "the technique gets us through the tired times because you still have to communicate whether you're tired or not. You've got to use your breath to get you through. When you're singing," she advised, "make it different every time and just get out of the way."

Although the students said at first they were nervous to work with someone other than their voice instructor, Dr. Sebronette Barnes-Aborom, they agreed that they were leaving the master class equipped with some new tools and confidence and that they had all learned from one of the best.

Dr. Barnes-Aborom stated that the master class was a component of the Arts and Lectures Series.  “When our guest speakers and artists come to campus, we arrange for them to meet with students in small groups based on their disciplines.  The Academic Engagement is the strength of the Arts and Lectures Series.”   

Danrich made her solo debut at Carnegie Hall with the New England Symphonic Ensemble in Beethoven’s Mass in C and Mozart’s Mass in G,and performed arias and duets by Vivaldi with the Cape Cod Symphony Orchestra at her Alice Tully Hall debut with The Little Orchestra of New York. When Ms. Danrich sang Beethoven's Ninth Symphony for the first time with the Cape Cod Symphony Orchestra the Cape Cod Times raved that “Young soprano Adrienne Danrich… added a glistening top to the ensemble work and sang solo passages with an unforced bell-like tone that penetrated to the far corners of the hall.”
Ms. Danrich is a native of St. Louis, MO and is an alumna of Eastman School of Music and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.