Kalispell music teachers present annual vocal festival

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The Kalispell Area Music Teachers Association (KAMTA) announces that the 18th Annual KAMTA Vocal Festival will be held on Saturday, March 3 at Faith Covenant Church in Kalispell.

Local voice teachers Cathy Helder, Francie Lipp, and Suzanne Rohrbach have students participating. Performances and adjudications will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

There is no charge for audience members. Each student performs a solo and then receives coaching and comments from the adjudicator. This year’s adjudicator is Katie Elizabeth Martin.

Martin is a Montana native and Flathead High School Valedictorian, and earned her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance with high honors from the University of Montana, Missoula. In 2010, Martin graduated Summa cum Laude with a Master of Music in Vocal Arts from the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music. Martin went on to receive her Doctorate in Vocal Performance with minors in operatic stage directing, music education and arts leadership from the University of Southern California in 2015.

Martin enjoys performing both on the operatic and recital stage. Selected roles included Drusilla in Monteverdi’s “L’incoronazione di Poppea,” Countess in Montana Lyric Opera’s production of “Le Nozze di Figaro,” and Fresquita in “Carmen” with the Glacier Symphony Orchestra and Chorale.

Martin has received numerous scholarly and performance accolades. She is a member of Pi Kappa Lambda, and the recipient of the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music’s opera award and vocal arts departmental award for her achievements as a doctoral student. She received the encouragement award at the Metropolitan Opera National Council District Auditions, and was a finalist in the 2007 National MTNA competition in Toronto.

Currently, Martin is employed as an Assistant Professor of Voice at the University of Montana. After her studies and work throughout the country, she and her husband, Sam, decided they wanted to come home and raise their daughter Madeline in Big Sky Country.

KAMTA, begun in 1977, is an organization of music educators throughout the Flathead Valley who meet regularly in order to provide mutual professional support for each other and to promote music through their various programs and activities. KAMTA is an affiliate chapter of Montana State Music Teachers Association (MSMTA) and Music Teachers National Association (MTNA).

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