Director of Players, Upper School Theater, and Laurelei. Middle School Girl Choirs, Grades 6-8.
Meghan is a Springside School 2003 graduate and started teaching at SCH Academy in 2015.
What inspired you to become a teacher?
I was initially inspired to teach in college when I was a graduate assistant at the University of Delaware studying classical voice and opera. The faculty there pushed and challenged me to dig deep into my exploration of song literature, opera roles, and voice pedagogy. Not only did I become a better musician, but I was provided the opportunity to direct opera scenes for the undergraduates as well as teach a large studio of voice students. When I delved into teaching and directing those students, it revealed a part of myself that I didn’t know existed. I found my voice as an educator and discovered so much joy and fulfillment as a voice teacher and director. I thrived in the magic moments when students discovered focus, strength, and passion through the performance of music onstage.
What part of SCH’s mission or values is most meaningful to you as a teacher?
In the context of SCH’s mission, one of the goals of Players is to challenge our students with productions that stretch our abilities and thinking by exploring issues of diversity, identity, social justice, and history. In addition to guiding our students to build a strong foundation in theatre as they develop skills in acting, singing, performance, and technical aspects of productions, we also work to promote inclusiveness and establish a sense of community where all are welcome and accepted. It is my hope that each student leaves the program with a lifelong appreciation for theatre and the arts, but also that they leave the program contributing thoughtfulness and showing resilience and courage in their creation of art and music.
What do you enjoy most about teaching and why?
There is something truly magical and unmatched in working with students—especially guiding them to expand their thinking, digging into the process, pushing the boundary of what they believe they can do, and seeing and understanding their progress. Finally, they share their creativity and passion with the world. It could be by working through a challenging monologue and performing and identifying as a character incredibly different from them, or by singing a powerful, dissonant, and rhythmically complex Bulgarian folk song. I teach for those moments of breakthrough when a student becomes lost in a character or the music or the intention behind a text. I believe that aiding, supporting, and leading students to create performance art through choral music and on the stage is one of the most important experiences that they will have in school.
Do you have a favorite teaching story or moment?
One of my favorite teaching moments was two years ago at the SCH A Cappella Fest, when Laurelei performed an incredible traditional folk song called Cikala le pong pong from Indonesia at St. Martins-in-the-Field. The students had been working for months perfecting the dissonant harmonies, driving rhythmic texture, fast-moving text, and demanding body percussion. They performed with poise, confidence, accuracy, and fully engaged voices and hearts. As the piece gained momentum and picked up in tempo towards the amazing finish, their stomp claps and voices rang through the church, resonating with such power that the audience erupted after the final chord. I was incredibly proud of their musicianship, connection with one another, and the beautiful, musical moment in time that they created.