I teach Voice and Piano. Melanie Ashe is a graduate of The University of the Arts with a major in Vocal Performance and a minor in Music Education and Musical Theatre. At The University of the Arts, Melanie studied jazz, classical, musical theatre, and contemporary vocal technique. She was a member of Rock Ensemble, Octonics, Jazz Singers and the University Chorus.
Melanie has performed with the Philadelphia POPS, The University of the Arts’ Z Band, and often performs with her own group around Philadelphia. She has recorded with several Philadelphia artists and for NFL Films’ NYC 4D Experience Theatre. She also records her own music, which has been sold on iTunes, Spotify, and featured on Universal Music Canada.
Melanie has been teaching voice, piano and theory lessons around the South Jersey area for three years. She specializes in vocal technique, vocal health, and audition preparation. She hopes to continue sharing her love of music with many more students.
When did you begin singing, and why?:
I was always singing from when I was a little girl. I loved music and singing made me feel connected and grounded. My mom was always singing with me or having me sing, which is probably why I felt so comfortable performing at such a young age.
What other instruments do you play, and what is your experience with them?:
I play piano. I took lessons as a kid and then again as an adult before I started teaching. I love piano just as much as the voice. It is a beautiful instrument. I also play a tiny bit of violin but not well.
What are your personal goals as a musician?:
My personal goals as a musician involve constant growth in not only my ability but in my knowledge of theory, repertoire, music history, and composition. I also want to share my stories through my music because I believe music brings people together. My favorite artists are the ones that I can relate to because they were vulnerable in their words or their melodies.
Do you have a memory of a time when a musical concept or technique really clicked? Something you’ll remember forever?:
Yes, I remember when I started teaching and the concept of breathing and the mixed voice really clicked for me because I had to learn how to explain them in various ways so I had to internalize them on a much deeper level.
What is your favorite piece of advice from one of your past (or current) teachers?:
Never copy a song. Let the song reflect you and your story even though you didn’t write it. Songs are written so that people can connect with them so take the words and allow your story to bring them to life.
What was your most challenging moment learning an instrument?:
Learning the embouchure for the flute. It was something quite unfamiliar to me.
What is your biggest musical achievement?:
Writing my own music and performing it with my band.
Favorite thing about teaching?:
Being able to brighten someone’s day or watch them grow and assess their growth as a vocalist and as an artist.
What is a piece of advice you would like to share with anyone learning music?:
Take it slow and stick to it. Practicing sucks but once you get over the hump it is the most rewarding endeavor.
Personal music projects: i.e. bands, groups, shows, recording, etc. (if any):
I have my own group that I perform with around Philly. I am recording my music in January.