Tag Archives: student spotlight

Student Spotlight: Leah L.

Student Spotlight: Leah L.

Leah is, without a doubt, one of the strongest people I know. I’ve watched her in her battle with Lyme Disease dealing with migraines and constant convulsions while she controlled her voice absolutely perfectly. Despite how sick she’s been, she still comes to lessons and has an amazing attitude. I don’t think I’ve once heard her complain or feel sorry for herself. As a child, she had vocal nodules but has recovered and sings with a stunning voice reminiscent of Adele’s. Most recently, she’s been accepted into the Creative Worship team at Orange Lutheran, something she’s been working at for a while, and we couldn’t be happier for her!

MM: What are some of your favorite hobbies, outside of music? Favorite school subjects, books, movies, shows, sports?

LL: My favorite subjects at school are math and science. I am really interested in the medical field, so math and science are really fun for me. I’m not a big reader (much to my mom’s dismay), but I did really like the Wonder Series when I was younger. I don’t get to the movies often, but I’m OBSESSED with Grey’s Anatomy and Bones tv shows. I used to be a gymnast and a volleyball player but had to give them up because of medical issues, but I do enjoy watching those sports.

MM: How did you get started with music, and how long have you been singing?

LL: I got started with music when my mom encouraged me to do singing lessons as a little kid. I have been doing singing lessons off and on since elementary school. The difference now is that I have the time and more interest to take lessons more seriously.

MM: What have been some of your favorite performances, and why? How do you share your music with others, beyond recitals?

LL: I have only been in one recital, and I forgot all the words to my song, haha. But this year in school I am on the Creative Worship team at my high school (leading praise and prayer during Chapel once a week) so I will get the chance to sing in front of the school at Chapel! I’m really excited about that, it’s been a goal of mine for years.

MM: What makes you keep up your practice, and what are your goals?

LL: I keep practicing because I really enjoy singing, and I have been given the gift of a good singing voice. As a Christian, we are taught to pursue the gifts God gives us, and my voice is definitely one of my gifts. It’s also an outlet for me, especially when I’m not feeling well. My goal of making the Creative Worship team was achieved, so I guess it’s time to figure out my next vocal goals!

MM: Who are a few bands/artists that have inspired you, and why?

LL: An artist that really inspires me is Adele because I have a lower raspier voice, so I feel like her songs and her tone and style go well with my voice. I also really like Lauren Dagle and Ed Sheeran and anything country, especially by Luke Bryan.

MM: What are some of your favorite songs, and why?

LL: Some of my favorite songs are “O Lord,” “Amazing Grace,” “To Make You Feel My Love,” and “Chasing Pavements.” Those songs have a really good beat, and I just really like them. I also have a special place in my heart for the old Christian hymns. My dad would sing me to sleep with them as a young child, so there’s a lot of nostalgia there. I love them.

MM: Can you share about a technique, skill, or song you struggled with, and how you are overcoming or have overcome it?

LL: I have a lower voice, so trying to sing anything high is pretty hard for me, but if I do voice exercises it makes it easier to sing better.

MM: I know you dealt with vocal nodules as a kid. Can you talk a little bit about what that was like and what the recovery was like? Does it currently impact your singing at all, or is that all in the past?

LL: My vocal nodules made it hard to sing when I was younger because I would lose my voice easily. Now, I still lose my voice, but more like after I’ve been to a really good baseball or football game or pep rally at school and am screaming loud, but it doesn’t affect my singing anymore.

MM: I know you’re currently battling Lyme Disease and have had to deal with everything from migraines to convulsions. You’ve been able to perfectly control your voice during all that, which is amazing to watch. Is there anything you focus on to make that happen? What’s going through your head, and how are you able to do it?

LL: Yeah, I’ve had a rough number of years with health issues. I’ve had to give up all my sports because of it, but that also gave me the time to pursue singing, so I guess that’s a blessing that I didn’t expect when I was first getting sick all the time. When I’m not feeling good or when I had those involuntary muscle movements (praise Jesus those are in my past), I just focus on singing and let God take over. When I focus on the singing, I don’t think about anything else, and it is nice to take my mind off of medical stuff I’m dealing with.

MM: Congratulations on getting into Creative Worship! What was the audition process like? What are you most looking forward to? How did you decide that was the group you were most interested in?

LL: Thank you! I’m SO EXCITED about that! The audition process was to sing a song and then to sing the harmony to the song to the teachers/directors of the music program. I chose Creative Worship over Honors Choir because CW leads worship to the student body weekly. I take my relationship with Christ seriously, and it’s a way for me to engage with my peers using my gifts, plus I love contemporary Christian music.

Student Spotlight: Brooke Boyce

Student Spotlight: Brooke B.

Brooke has been a pleasure to watch mature. Though only 7-years-old, she’s extremely accomplished, performing the National Anthem in front of thousands of people, participating in our Pop Star Camp,  singing for Talent for Epilepsy, and attending most of our studio recitals. One of the kindest, most humble, and supportive kids you could meet, she’s beloved by her teacher Anne and the whole staff at Molly’s Music.

MM: What are some of your favorite hobbies, outside of music? Favorite school subjects, books, movies, shows, sports?

BB: Some of my favorite hobbies are soccer, art, guitar, and track.  My favorite school subject is reading, favorite book is Diary of a Wimpy Kid and The Well, I love the whole series.  My favorite movie is Parent Trap.

MM: How did you get started with music, and how long have you been singing?

BB: I got started in music because of my papa, Jerry.  He put me in the classes at Molly Music with Miss Anne.  I have been singing for about two and a half years or so.

MM: What have been some of your favorite performances, and why? How do you share your music with others, beyond recitals?

BB: One of my favorite performances was at the Pop Star Camp last summer.  I sang Katy Perry’s “Firework.” I liked dressing up for the final performance and watching all the kids learn how to sing their song throughout the whole week.  Another favorite performance was singing the National Anthem before a baseball game.

MM: What makes you keep up your practice, and what are your goals?

BB: Miss Anne is a really good teacher and I love seeing her.  My number one goal is to have fun. Another goal is to sing the National Anthem at the Angels game.

MM: Who are a few bands/artists that have inspired you, and why?

BB: Katy Perry, P!nk, and Luke Bryan.  They inspire me because they have good voices.  I think Katy Perry and P!nk are great performers.

MM: What are some of your favorite songs, and why?

BB: Some of my favorite songs are “Firework,” “The Greatest Show,” and “Try.”  I like these songs because they make my happy.

MM: Can you share about a technique, skill, or song you struggled with, and how you are overcoming or have overcome it?

BB: Right now, I’m working on “The Greatest Show.” It’s a little bit difficult.  I’m going to overcome it by continuing practicing and trying until I get it right.

MM: I know you’ve done a lot of national anthem performances. Do you have a favorite one? Is it nerve wracking singing in front of all those people, or do you feel pretty calm?

BB: My favorite one was my very first one for the San Bernardino 66ers.  I feel pretty calm.  I don’t get nervous at all.

MM: It was so great having you at Pop Star Camp last year! What was your experience like? Do you have a favorite memory or a favorite part of it?

BB: I had so much fun that I want to do it again this year. My experience was a positive one.  I really liked watching all of the kids kind of struggle with their songs in the beginning of the week and see how far they come with the song by the end.  I had such a great time.

MM: What advice do you wish you had at the beginning? What advice would you give to other students just starting out?

BB: I’m not sure what advice I wish I had at the beginning, but I would tell students that are starting out to always try your best and believe in yourself.

 

 

 

Student Spotlight: Ella Hayes

Student Spotlight: Ella H.

I had the pleasure of working with Emma’s student Ella at our May Pre-Recital Masterclass. We were all blown away by her unique style and stunning voice, which one student described as “mesmerizing.” Along with singing, Ella can accompany herself on piano and ukulele and even takes classes in aerial silks. While she’s newer at performing in front of an audience, she’s maintained a phenomenal YouTube channel and an Instagram music account. Be sure to follow her at @ellahayesmusic! In the mean time, enjoy her video from our latest recital.

MM: What are some of your favorite hobbies, outside of music? Favorite school subjects, books, movies, shows, sports?

EH: I have been enjoying my classes in aerial silks this year. I also really love roller skating and going to Knott’s Berry Farm with my friends. My current tv show obsession is “Gotham.”

MM: How did you get started with music, and how long have you been singing?

EH: Like many others, I can’t remember how and when I started loving music. But my dad had a big influence on how my taste has developed. He introduced me to my early favorites, Adele and Evanescence, but also standards from the 1950s and New Wave, Punk, and Rap from the 1980s.

MM: What have been some of your favorite performances, and why? How do you share your music with others, beyond recitals?

EH: The recent recital with this studio was pretty much my first public performance. I struggled to perform in front of anyone for a long time, and I get super nervous even now. I did much better recording myself for YouTube uploads for a few years, and now have an Instagram account where I can share more often through posts and stories.

MM: What makes you keep up your practice, and what are your goals?

EH: My desire to improve my technique and style keeps me focused on practicing everyday. I really want to be a better stage performer.

MM: Who are a few bands/artists that have inspired you, and why?

EH: Like I mentioned earlier, Adele and Evanescence were meaningful inspirations early on. These days I tend to like anything by the two Jameses: James Arthur and James Young.

MM: What are some of your favorite songs, and why?

EH: My current favorite is called “One Last Dance” by Us the Duo. The story is so eternal and the words are so sweet. But my all-time favorite song is “Hello” by Evanescence for the intense and beautiful melancholy it expresses.

MM: Can you share about a technique, skill, or song you struggled with, and how you are overcoming or have overcome it?

EH: Allergies are the worst! Singing with a compromised respiratory system is very challenging, but I try and drink lots of water and use my emergency inhaler when necessary. I’ve also had to adjust to how my vocal range changed when I was going through puberty, which was hard. It helps to know that these challenges are just how life is sometimes 🙂

MM: I noticed on your Instagram that you accompany yourself both on ukulele and piano. Is that self-taught, or do you take lessons? Any other instruments?

EH: I had a piano teacher when I was very young, but didn’t like the slow pace and strict structure and quit after two years. I continued learning on my own, mostly by writing songs and playing on a digital keyboard. When I was about 9 or 10 years old, my parents gave me a ukulele for Christmas and I taught myself to play it. They signed me up for some lessons, which I did for about a year until I switched over to voice and piano with your studio. I’m interested in learning to play the guitar.

MM: What advice do you wish you had at the beginning? What advice would you give to other students just starting out?

EH: My best advice is that if it hurts to sing it, don’t push it; try to raise/lower the key. It’s not worth damaging your cords (and it probably doesn’t sound great anyway).

Haylie Nowell

Student Spotlight: Haylie N.

Haylie has been on the stage, screen, and runway since the age of 7. She’s performed on the Disney Channel, acted in short films and musicals, and walked the runways of Paris, New York, and LA Fashion Week. With so much success under her belt at such a young age, you’d expect Haylie to be a little full of herself, but she’s about the most down-to-earth person you could meet, never without a kind word for the people around her. We’ve loved having her as a private vocal student, at our Pop Star Camp, as an emcee for our recital, and at our Red Carpet Photo Shoot. She always makes us smile, and we know she’ll go far in life, no matter what avenue she pursues.

MM: How did you get started with singing, and how long have you been at it (not just with us)?

HN: I got started with singing in Elementary 4th grade when we started having music class and choir . I loved it and thought it was fun performing . So I continued singing and eventually started taking lessons with Molly about a year ago.

MM: How have you been sharing your songs with others? What’s your favorite performance so far and why?

HN: I share my songs by making recordings and sharing them…Also by singing and performing with my school choir. My favorite performance so far is my recital at Christmas when I performed “Mary Did You Know.” It was my favorite because Christmas represents God and celebrates his love for us .

MM: Who are a few bands/artists that have inspired you, and why?

HN: A few artists who have inspired me are Grace Vanderwall, because she has an amazing voice and her music is about how she feels.

A band that inspires me is Pentatonix . They all are very unique voices and they change music, singing it in their own way and making it amazing.

My last band is Imagine Dragons . They sing upbeat current songs that are great to listen to, and their unique way of presenting their music inspires me to be myself and sing music that makes me happy and inspires me to be unique with my music.

MM: What are some of your favorite songs, and why?

HN: A favorite song of mine is “On Top Of The World,” By Imagine Dragons. It’s a favorite song because it speaks about courage and being on top and not letting anyone bring them down.

MM: What makes you keep up your practice, and what are your goals?

HN: I keep up my practice because I want make my voice stronger and my range bigger. Music makes me happy. It’s like sunshine to my soul. My goals are to eventually sing more confidently in front a large group of people, as well as learn as much as I can to improve my voice and singing technique.

MM: What advice would you give to other students just starting out?

HN: Don’t be discouraged because you don’t think you are good, because over time you will become more confident and your singing ability with get stronger.

MM: Can you share about a technique, skill, or song you struggled with, and how you are overcoming or have overcome it?

HN: A song that I have struggled with is “Symphony” by Clean Bandit, because there is such a high range, so I kept practicing and didn’t let it get overwhelming for me.

MM: What’s something most people don’t know about you?

HN: Most people don’t know that I know American Sign Language.

MM: Oh wow! How cool! And what are some of your favorite hobbies outside of music? Favorite school subjects, books, movies, shows, sports?

HN: Some of my favorite hobbies are volleyball and playing the Xbox. My favorite subjects in school are Bible and Science. My favorite movie is all the Transformers movies. My favorite book that I have read is Song Of The Wanderer.

MM: You have a pretty impressive resume (modeling, acting, etc.) outside of singing. Do you have a favorite gig you’ve done, modeling, acting, or otherwise?

Student Spotlight: Haylie Nowell
HN: My favorite gig I’ve done was the Disney Commercial with BayMax. It was so cool. Had lots of fun filming it, and Baymax was awesome. And yes, it was amazing to be in a Disney Commercial. 

MM: How did you get into modeling and acting? Do you have a favorite shoot or runway experience?

HN: I was scouted at a Justice store when I was 7-years-old. My mom decided to go with it, and I was picked up by an agent . I began shooting print work for many designers and I began taking acting and modeling classes. Some of my favorite shows have been New York Fashion Week, and my best show ever was Paris Fashion Week. It was super amazing being in Paris for 9 days, doing all kinds of print and fashion photography. Paris was a dream come true.

Student Spotlight: Tessa A.

Student Spotlight: Tessa A.

Meet Tessa, Anne’s talented voice and guitar student. Tessa is extremely versatile, singing and accompanying herself on everything from pop to musical theatre. Recently, she made it through three rounds of America’s Got Talent, getting chosen to sing in front of the executive producers. We’re excited to hear whether she gets called for the next round, but regardless of the outcome, we’re so proud of her and know she’ll go far with her music.

MM: How did you get started with music, and how long have you been singing and playing guitar? Why guitar?

TA: I always liked singing but started to formally take lessons when I was 6 (~three years ago). I’ve been playing guitar for just one year and wanted to learn an instrument that I can use to accompany my singing.

MM: Do you share your musical skills with family, friends, or your community? How?

TA: I pretty much sing at every family gathering and I also try to do open mics and recitals every chance I get.

MM: What makes you keep up your practice, and what are your goals?

TA: I have a really fun time practicing and my goals are to start writing my own songs by the time I’m twelve.

MM: Who are a few bands/artists that have inspired you, and why?

TA: I love Coldplay because Chris Martin has great vocals. I also LOVE Sam Smith cause his voice delivers so much emotion.

MM: Can you share about a technique, skill, or song you struggled with, and how you are overcoming or have overcome it?

TA: When I was working on “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina” I worked really hard on my breath support so I can hit the high notes. Miss Anne helped me improve so much.

MM: What advice do you wish you had at the beginning? What advice would you give to other students just starting out?

TA: To always remember to connect with  the emotion of a song I’m singing. The most important part of singing is making the audience feel a new emotion, and if you don’t connect with the song then the audience wont feel it either.

MM: I heard you had a great AGT audition! Tell us about it! What did you do for your audition?

TA: The AGT auditions were really fun. Lots of crazy acts and talented artists. It was a great experience, and even if I don’t get in it was a great feeling to get to sing five songs for the executive producers.

MM: How did you feel going in? Nervous? Excited?

TA: I was just very excited and a little nervous.

MM: What was the most memorable thing about the experience?

TA: The most exciting part of the experience was when I got to sing for the show’s executive producers.

MM: How are you preparing for the next rounds of the process?

TA: Not sure I will make it to the next round. For now I just practice like always and if I get in I will sing from my heart.

Student Spotlight: Madi Linnen

Student Spotlight: Madi L.

Madi is an actress and singer who attends Huntington Beach’s acclaimed Academy for the Performing Arts (APA) in the musical theatre department and who’s growing her acting resume with the help of her new agent. She’s improved immensely in a very short period of time because of her intelligence, hard work, and willingness to try new things. Madi excels at an immense variety of vocal genres, from breathy indie, to soulful jazz-inspired pop, to various types of musical theatre. We can’t wait to see how far she comes in the next few years.

MM: What are some of your favorite hobbies/shows/books/sports?

ML: Aside from singing, I love to act. I have been acting ever since I was little and it’s always been one of my passions along with singing. I can remember all the plays I did when I was little and all the fun memories I made doing them. It’s always been my dream to be an actress when I grow up and it still is to this day. I recently signed with an agent and am working on growing my resume.  I also recently got accepted into the Musical Theatre Program at APA and enjoy taking classes there a few times a week.

MM: How did you get started with singing, and how long have you been singing?

ML: I have been singing ever since I can remember. Whether it is in musicals, in the car, around the house, I sing everywhere. My first performance ever was when I was three and sang “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” at my grandma’s retirement party. It’s always been exciting for me to perform and be in the spotlight. The reaction and praise after is just as exciting.

MM: What makes you keep up your practice, and what are your goals?

ML: If it weren’t for Molly and the practice, I wouldn’t have grown so much as I have in the past year. For me, practicing isn’t something that is boring or the same thing every time. Often, if you love doing something so much, you’ll practice it without even thinking twice. Whether it is at APA or just around the house I’m always practicing hard challenging songs and putting my own style into it. I’m a perfectionist, so if something is not how I want it to sound or if I’m trying to hit a hard note, I will go over it so much that my brother yells at me because I sing the same part over and over again. My goals are to be an artist and actress and become successful in this business. If I didn’t constantly practice, there would be no chance of that happening.

MM: What advice do you wish you had at the beginning? What advice would you give to other students just starting out?

ML: Some advice I would give to artists starting out is don’t limit yourself, and push yourself out of your comfort zone. One thing I had to realize is that I was limiting myself by saying “I can’t hit that note,” or “That’s too high.” Once I got past that my belt range increased immensely and my range overall also increased. Also don’t stick with the stuff you know. If you just stick with one style or a certain range all the time you’ll never experience other styles and ranges that you might enjoy better. Pushing yourself is the number one way to succeed in music.

Student Spotlight: Angela T.

Our teacher Michael recommended Angela for this month’s Student Spotlight. Angela has lots of skills and accomplishments, including singing and dancing, and has participated in a number of auditions for South Korean entertainment shows. Here’s what Michael had to say about her: “Angela is great. She has really good natural singing ability, and has made rapid improvement. I can tell she works hard and puts in the practice to develop techniques with her voice (and most recently guitar!) She introduced me to K-pop, which is really cool and something new to me, and we always have a good time working through the songs she’s learning.

MM: What are some of your favorite hobbies, outside of music? Favorite school subjects, books, movies, shows, sports?

AT: Besides music, I like dancing because exercise assists me to release stress. I also like to read books about psychology. My favorite book is Transformation by Keigo Higashino, who is a Japanese author.

​The book is about a person who changes his personality after encountering a car accident. He changes his brain with a criminal who causes the accident. The protagonist was an excellent painter who has a smooth drawing style; however, his drawing style and personality become as violent as the criminal. He experiences a struggle with himself and the mind of being evil.

My favorite sport is bowling.

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My favorite subject is world history. As far as movies and shows, I love A Dog’s Tale, Mental Crime, Weekly Idol, and the K-pop show M Countdown

Basically M Countdown is not a program to pick the new idols or artists. It is for all the artists to get on the stage when they release a new song, and everyone who comes back at that time can join the performances, and there is a special scoring system that calculates the score of the artist’s song and album. It is kind of like a small reward for every week. The online music sale, album sale, and the social media searching rate will be counted in the system. two groups of artists will compete with each other, and the artist gets the highest score based on the system will get a refers to reward by the program.

MM: What’s something most people don’t know about you?

AT: I have been to many entertainment auditions (mainly South Korean companies). Different companies have different styles of choosing people, but mostly they will ask the people who join the audition to either dance or sing, and two judges will record the process of performing and send the video back to their company in South Korea. They won’t directly evaluate the people but they will say,”great you did a good job” after you perform well, but they will not tell you the result right after audition. They will discuss and see the videos with the whole team, and they will pick the people they want by emailing them or calling them. Basically every person has to sing without any background music, but a guitar is allowed. People who choose Dance have a background music to accompany with their dance.

MM: Oh wow! What’s your favorite audition?

AT: My favorite audition experience is my first audition experience with a company called YG Entertainment. It is my favorite entertainment in South Korea because my favorite artists are in this company and I really like the style of this company. It is very impressive experiencing it, but I was also nervous about performing well. I sang a song called “Lonely” by 2ne1. At that time I really had a lot of shortages and things to conquer because I was too nervous so I couldn’t sing very well at the beginning​​ . My volume was too small but after many experiences of auditions, I’m no longer scared to perform before people.

MM: How did you get started with music, and how long have you been singing? How long have you been taking lessons?

AT: After I saw the reaction of fans while they watch the concerts of their favorite artists, I decided to start with music because I feel like that music has power to bring people happiness. I want to make more people happy by listening to my music. I have been learning singing for 4 years. Initially, I learned classical rather than contemporary music. The singing style is pretty different from what I am doing now, but it helps me a lot with my basic skills. I learned classic singing for about 2 years and the contemporary singing for another 2 years.

MM: Who are a few bands/artists that have inspired you, and why?

AT: I am inspired by a group called Bigbang. Their music style varies but is mainly hip-hop. They also dance while they are singing, which is appealing to me a lot. They are the first group that made me desire to understand music and motivate me to perform on stage.

MM: Oh, are they why you also began dancing?

AT: Actually my parents asked me to dance when I was about three-years-old. I danced in a traditional dance style, but I’m not really interested in dancing because I just follow the order of my parents. Bigbang promoted me to learn singing more. Compared to singing I’m not that passionate about dancing, but after I saw some YouTubers dancing in the pop style, I found that is really cool to dance with the music. And at that time I went to a school that specializes in training people who want to be an idol. That’s the first time I learned dancing. I’m quite happy after taking the class. My friends say they can see the change in me after taking class there. Unfortunately, due to the time conflict I cannot take hip-hop class right now, but I’m planning to find new schools to learn more about dance.

MM: What are some of your favorite songs, and why?

AT: My favorite songs are: “Fighter” by Christina Aguilera (intense vocal, special tone); “Whistle” by Blackpink (impressive chorus); “Bermuda Triangle” by Dean, Zico and Crush (fancy rap).

MM: Do you share your musical skills with family, friends, or your community? How? And what’s been your favorite way to do so?

AT: I have shared many musical skills with my friends. My friends also like singing and dancing. I think it is intriguing that people grow together and enjoy the time performing together. I normally share some short vocal training music with them and give them suggestions while they are singing.

MM: What makes you keep up your practice, and what are your goals?

AT: I think it is my passion for music that makes me keep up practice. I will record my singing and check if there is anything I can improve. My goal is to have a better volume and learn more skills to make my voice sound better.

MM: Can you share about a technique, skill, or song you struggled with, and how you are overcoming or have overcome it?

AT: I used to struggle with the song “Love Me Harder” by Ariana Grande because there is a lot of vibrato, and I do not know how to sing it at all. After the class by Michael, I learned that I can separate the note to another three or four and practice slowly then speed up.

MM: What advice would you give to other students just starting out?

AT: I want to encourage the new students to show your talent confidently. Everything just starts and there are many chances to improve yourself and show your music to people. Keep working and believe you can achieve your goal!