Testimonials are nice but the only thing that really matters is the "RESULTS" my students get.
"I've been your student for 3 years now and you have inspired me and pushed me to become the artist I am today! All of my accomplishments I owe to you! Music will and forever be my life and it is because of you. I will now have a career in my passion. Thank you for all you do! Your eternal student Sherisse Bailey xo" - Sherisse Bailey
**Sherisse has been awarded not one but TWO SCHOLARSHIPS.
"We LOVED your sessions, and both John and I felt that we learned more in our time with you than we had in the last three years! It was such a pleasure meeting you, and thank you so much!”
Boni Wagner-Stafford - Boni and her husband John have sung with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir for three years
The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir is Canada's world renowned largest vocal ensemble since its foundation in 1894
Toronto Mendelssohn Choir http://www.tmchoir.org
“Your experiential teaching style took me out of the rut I was in. I had stopped progressing a long time ago and almost gave up. Then I found your website and decided to take a risk and try a lesson. You stretched my thinking and challenged me until I broke through the wall I had hit. I can now sing songs I have never been able to before. You promised that I would be empowered through the lessons in many ways and you were right. I cannot thank you enough for everything your coaching has done for me.”
Trish T. – Choir Singer (Toronto)
“Whether I'm in the studio singing hours on end or touring the world, playing shows night after night with my sleazy hard rock band it can take its toll on your vocal chords. Donna’s approach to voice has taught me great exercises to warm up before and cool down after shows. This has allowed me to maintain my voice while recording and on the road. My voice helps me capture the audience and lets me hold them in the palm of my hand throughout the show.
I have worked with other vocal coaches but Donna stands out as someone who is as excited to work with her students as they are to work with her.”
*Dru Broda, lead singer for Reverse Grip is an entertainer by virtue of his singing and song writing. Music has taken him all over the world, which he tells me, guarantees him endless adventures. Here is what the media is saying: "Dru Broda has a versatile vocal range, and an adequate amount of sneer envelope anyone from Axl Rose to David Lee Roth.” and "Dru Broda's vocal range, reaches low into the gravel section of his voice only to finish high with the big chorus."
Dru Broda - Lead Singer Reverse Grip (Toronto)
"My experience with Donna Flynn as a Vocal Coach was absolutely incredible! She taught me quite a lot about my own voice. She helped me to loosen up while singing and to really sing the emotion of the song as opposed to “just singing”. She helped me feel very comfortable which was big for me as I was very nervous in the beginning.
Donna worked with all the vocalists for the concert and we were all impressed with the customized help she was able to offer each person. Not to mention the various exercises we learned, from breathing to physical exercise and the practical advice on how to take care of my voice.
I went in constantly losing my voice from all my performances, and I left the training with Donna a much better steward of my voice. Knowing how to rest and knowing how to sing.
I still have a lot of learning to do, but Donna has shown me how to get to my goals as a songwriter/singer! Thank you!”
Toyin Dada - (Toronto)
*Toyin is a proud new mom. Toyin Dada is the winner of the Best African Female Gospel Artist award, African Entertainment Awards in August 2011 and nominated for the 2012 award, and others to numerous to llist. She is the host of the television show “African Gospel Vibes” featured on Roger's cable, Bell Satellite TV, Video Tron, and Shaw). She has released her second CD and DVD a live concert recording, “Broken Spirit Contrite Heart” .
“Thank you Donna for so sensitively tailoring each session to my personality, talents and learning style. You calm and reassure me. Yet you also energize and encourage me. I leave each session more confident in myself and more excited for our next one. You're a delightfully positive breath of fresh air. I just want to take big delicious gulps whenever I see you!”
Jonathan Wong - (Toronto)
Universal Music is the largest music corporation in the world. Singers may think working with a company like Universal Music is out of reach, but is it really?
The Treasures Band, a Toronto country/soul group, released their debut album in 2013 with Universal Music. Their music is getting lots of radio play so keep an ear out for them. I believe supporting Canadian musicians is the best way to help everyone succeed.
There are many different roads a singer/musician can take. The Treasures Band chose to stay true to themselves. They even abandoned a project done with a famous producer in Nashville. The band and their management agreed it not represent all they had to offer their fans. They did the hard work and made the hard decisions. It paid off!
As the quote says, “success leaves clues”. The Treasures Band did all the right things, in the right way, and in the right order. They even got to spend time at the Willie Nelson Ranch. I could not be more thrilled for them!
I am telling you this not only so you can learn about this talented group of musicians, but also because I want to encourage you to keep moving in the direction of your dreams. Don’t let anything keep you from reaching your potential. If they can do it so can you!
Check them out at: http://www.thetreasuresband.com/
Hear them live: http://music.cbc.ca/#/concerts/The-Treasures-CMW-2013-2013-03-23
"As valuable and instructive as the individual lessons are, the real gift is the takeaway of her technique. It remains like software in your brain...an App installed for your voice. One of her lessons isn't like 10...more like 50 or 100."
Barry McIntrye - Toronto
"As I work along at my own singing, learning off points you have made, I find I continue to improve, and now work towards more precise note placement (I don't have auto tune. Auto Tune, while good, can also suck the soul and life out of a voice).
One of the things I notice as I go along is an ability to sing songs in a higher key. For example, I recently finished a cover of Neil Young's song Harvest. There is no way even a year ago I could have hit those notes in the key he did it, which sounds pathetic, but it's true. I was consequently able to redo this song, keeping Neil's "loose" style of playing, and "boom, thwack" on the drums, but putting my own spin and vibe on it.
It's as a result of what I learned from you I was able to get there. If you sing, who would not want to get better?"
*Murray knows how to balance a busy life and his passion for music. He continues to grow as a singer and musician. He’s a true enthusiast!
Murray Pollard (LA/Toronto)
"LA was so amazing. Probably the most amazing experience of my entire life. I have you to thank for telling my mom about it." - Stephanie Ferraro
Be Discovered SUMMER IN LA MAKING THE BAND
Recorded by 2014 Grammy nominated Producer/Engineer Yan Perchuk
Sold on iTunes Fall 2013. CLICK HERE to see their music video
“I am so grateful for all the work you have done with me. I am able to hold and sustain notes better than ever before. I am learning so much from you. It is such a blessing to me. Learning and growing so much. I cannot thank you for all the ways you are helping. It has been strengthening my voice a lot.”
Kerry Olthof – Choir member with The People’s Church Choir – Living Truth (Toronto)
"I sing for fun only but I love it! I wanted to find a Vocal Coach to help me sound better and give me what my other training did not do. Donna told me my voice is as unique to me as my fingerprint is and that she would direct me to discover my vocal fingerprint. She would do all the hard parts by digging into my voice to find anything blocking my voice from sounding its best and all I would need to do is follow the plan she set for me. She was not kidding! I increased my range when I doubted I could, improved to the point where now my friends ask me to sing for them, and I feel amazing about the progress I have made. Donna taught me to not just sing songs but to stretch myself to improve the voice I already have. Having a job and family to care of takes up a lot of my time but Donna did not give up on me even during the times I gave up on myself. Words cannot explain what I get from being able to sing the way I can now. Donna coaches in a way that has helped me both personally and professionally."
Sheila M – Hobby Singer (Toronto)
*Sheila is a true music lover. She came in as someone shy to sing but developed the confidence and voice she always wanted to have. I could not be more proud of her!
“Donna has been able to finely pinpoint strategies to quickly improve my singing and speaking voice. She is able to communicate her wealth of knowledge on the human voice in a way that is fun, entertaining and memorable. Over the years, I have greatly enjoyed our sessions together. She is energizing, creative, and always encouraging. She cultivates a space where you can grow as an artist and public speaker. I look forward to our continued work together!”
Sonya Tomas MIR, BSc Psychology - Master's Degree Queen's University (Toronto)
”I went to Donna with the intent of improving my voice – not my singing voice but my speaking one. As an actress, I was finding that the pitch and tone of my voice was not working to my advantage. Donna took me through a series of exercises and right after the first lesson I started to see improvement. She was able to connect my voice with my brain and show me the difference that focus and breath control could make on my voice. Genius! She showed me how singing relates to speaking which in turn relates to character.
She helped me to see, what fifteen years of classical training could not – that the placement of breath and sound are key to a great result!”
Christine Wall - Actress (Toronto/Vancouver)
*Whether you have seen her Lead work in films such as “A Dinner Story”, “Cart”, or “Angel”, seen here theatre performances in “Fiddler on the Roof”, “La Bohema”, “Mahakala Iron Dreams”, to name just a few, or had her show up on your tv in commercials like Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Famous Players Cinemas or appearances on shows like Listen Up, one thing I know for sure is that she is an excellent example of an actress continuing to hone her craft, regardless of the success she has achieved, with a vision of maintaining excellence in her field.
Sony Music Entertainment Canada Inc. / Curve Music – Toronto Canada / Singer Johnny Favourite
Balancing a conventional job that you love with a very successful music career is the ideal scenario for many people. Johnny Favourite has done that exact thing.
Credits Include: Gold Album Holiday Romance. Juno Award winner. Multiple ECMA Award winner and nominee.
After growing tired of the music business, Johnny decided to move to the South of Portugal to do what he loved most, pursue his love of art and singing. He longed for a warm climate, less travel, and more fun. He found it! He began auctioning art and continued to perform regularly in wine cellars and quaint European venues.
Some may describe his life as glamorous but to him he is simply doing what he was born to do, sing.
His record company decided enough was enough. Johnny’s producer got on an airplane, headed to the South of Portugal, and told Johnny that it was time to get back to Canada to record his next album. His producer contacted me to help prepare Johnny for the recording studio and the demands of performance after him being out of the North American spotlight for a while. That album, “Troubadour”, is said to be “the finest jazz interpretative pop album this side of Buble”. In fact, the album hit #1 in Canadian within the first three weeks of being released. Check him out through my newer website at http://www.voicetrainingprivate.com/music-with-a-conventional-job---johnny-s-story.html
As I always tell my students, careers come in all shapes and sizes. The combination of a successful singing career and conventional job he loves makes Johnny one of my favorite (pun intended) all-time students! His story is exciting! The vision he created for his life is being lived out. So can yours.
I have posted this to inspire you to follow your heart and build the career of your dreams. I sincerely hope you do.
"Donna found things in my voice I never even imagined I had in there! My voice was noticeably better immediately. That is a result of her extensive approach that she draws from in a way only someone with her background can. Making progress is easy with her guidance, which I could not have found elsewhere, even though I have had several years of vocal training prior meeting with her. This is an experience with the voice that all singers need to try to complete the creative process of singing."
Music Biz Professional
SIMON COWELL OF AMERICAN IDOL & THE X FACTOR FAME IS WORKING ON AN EXCITING NEW PROJECT AND HE IS LOOKING FOR YOUhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gU8z96gj8DA#at=50
The best entries will be viewed by Simon Cowell himself or his top team of talent scouts. That exposure alone makes this worthwhile.
Posting the email to simplify things as I wanted to get this out quickly! Submit your music and/or pass this on to the great talents you know. There is a link below and the Simon Cowell Facebook page has a link there too. Good luck!!!
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Ollie Scarth
Subject: You Generation - Global Talent Search
To: Donna Flynn
My name is Ollie Scarth and I am the Assistant Producer of The You Generation – a YouTube channel centered around singing competitions. I hope you don’t mind me contacting you but I wanted to get in touch?
The You Generation was launched earlier this year by Simon Cowell and the main goal of our channel is to find new singing talent. The channel operates on a global level.
It’s very easy to do – simply subscribe and upload a video to our YouTube channel - here is a link explaining it all: http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCF1cWZk-kVBrN9AM_ey7qdQ
I have a poster I can send through if you would like... Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with any questions – my number (), or feel free to drop me an email.
Many thanks and look forward to hearing from you soon!
Ollie Scarth, Assistant Producer
Maverick TV, The You generation
"Donna has been my vocal coach for several years. The first thing I noticed as an adult beginner after trying other vocal coaches is that Donna makes you feel comfortable which is very important. This was not the case with some other coaches I tried who can make you feel like you are supposed to perform on the spot for them! Donna is also very knowledgeable, always giving creative and practical techniques that cater to your particular vocal needs and which evolve with your skill level. In addition, she really listens and I mean not only to your voice and how it is doing but she listens to you regarding your overall vocal goals.
It is not an exaggeration to say she is making my vocal dreams come closer than I ever imagined. In short, Donna’s combination of knowledge, teaching skills and supportiveness as well as her encouragement makes her an exemplary vocal coach whom I highly recommend."
Antonia (Smudgie) Swann - Singer / Songwriter (Toronto)
*Smudgie, a part-time singer/musician who began pursuing her music goals while getting her Ph.D. in economics. She has received several awards including the “Band of the Year”, “Best Alternative Rock” at the Ontario Independent Music Awards and is a UK Songwriter Semi-Finalist. Her music has been used in an LA-based drama series and her songs have been played at coffee houses across LA.
42 MILLION YouTube Hits and Counting
Going viral on YouTube! When Cynthia Silversides came to my office she was a new mom to a beautiful baby boy. She wanted to learn to sing for fun and to take time for herself as she managed her way through the early phase of motherhood.
Little did we know at the time that her hobby would take her down a path that would involve her in something that would become a YouTube craze!
Cynthia says, “no one ever thought this would become so big!” The video has received approximately 42 Million YouTube hits since it was posted.
“Donna, I have you to thank for this bit of fame :) as you encouraged me to look for a choir to join, and it has been loads of fun -- You are a huge inspiration to me.” Cynthia Silversides.
Chorus Niagara Flash Mob singing Hallelujah: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SXh7JR9oKVE
Chorus Niagara: http://www.chorusniagara.ca/page/home
It was a pleasure to watch her journey unfold. She is a reminder to stretch yourself, do what you love, sing, and share it with others. Cynthia had the courage to step out of her safe zone and now she has a memory that will last a lifetime. Congratulations!
"I have learned so much from you. Even the little time you have been teaching me has made a huge difference in my voice. It's wonderful how you help people find their own style.”
Loril Shannik, Musician http://www.lorilshannik.com (Brantford)
*Loril Shannik is a Celtic harpist with a special love for the traditional music of her heritage. She is a Royal Conservatory-trained musician who also plays piano, harpsicord, recorder and trombone but her great love is still the Celtic Harp. She teaches harp and performs solo and ensemble.
“Recently I developed a voice problem which ended my ability to sing (a voice disorder caused by poor vocal habits called Muscle Tension Dysphonia). Fortunately I was referred to Donna to help me regain my voice. In just two lessons, my voice began to return. I am optimistic that I will make continual progress with her expertise and guidance.”
Alice Brown (Toronto)
“An impressive share! I’ve just forwarded this onto a co-worker who has been doing a little research on this. And he in fact ordered me lunch simply because I stumbled upon it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending the time to talk about this subject here on your site.”
*Really fun feedback I got from someone in the USA when he stumbled across a medical article I wrote about voice strain and the onset of voice issues that destroy the health and sound of the singing voice.
Nathan Jeromy USA
“Couldn't have asked for a better, more friendly, more encouraging, more humorous vocal coach! You are the Charles Darwin of Vocal Training. You observe and map out the evolution of your students inner voice. I can see great improvements in myself. Without you, this would not have been possible! You are Simply Amazing in every respect!!!!”
Desiree Corso – Songwriter (Toronto)
“Donna is Amazing and Fun to Work With!! With her help and expertise my breathing capacity has been greatly enhanced. Now, when I facilitate seminars, I don’t run out of breath while speaking. Her knowledge in the field of voice and specialized techniques taught me how the diaphragm works and how to properly utilize it. By practicing these techniques I can control my breath while speaking for long intervals. I strongly recommend Donna to anyone who wants to improve their public speaking techniques.”
Anne Hurtubise - President, Emotional Intelligence Corporation http://www.eicor.com (Toronto)
“Your Vocal Assessment is the best thing I have ever done for my voice. I sing Rock & Roll and need something to give me power and control over my voice. I was confused by all the music theatre and classical methods out there. You know exactly what my voice needs as a contemporary artist.”
Allen DuBois. – Singer / Songwriter (Toronto)
“Your explanation as to how vibrato is developed is the most logical one I have been given. I need a bit more help. Your CD will do the trick.”
Robert Spadafora – Musician (New York USA)
"I think you and your voice are beautiful. As a recreational musician, I had never focused on vocals until I heard you sing. A deep, clear, strong, resonant sound that is jazzy and versatile. So loud but with total control. I have never heard anything like it. I love it. To me you are Patsy Cline, Carrie Underwood and Janis Joplin all rolled in one.”
Craig Appleton — Musician (Toronto)
“I finally understand what I am doing. I had always been asked to do scales without really knowing what they were for or how they affected my singing. You changed all that. I now have a clear idea of what works best for me and why. Thank you for putting an end to the confusion.”
Thomas B. – Singer / Musician (Toronto)
“I tried all the shortcuts and put off learning proper vocal technique. When my career did not progress the way I wanted it to and when I started to have problems with my voice I asked you for help. You turned my voice around. I am finally getting noticed. What can be better then that!”
Cathy S. – Singer (Toronto)
“The Vocal Assessment gave me the opportunity to really learn about what my voice was and was not doing properly. It gave me a much broader understanding of my capabilities on a mental, physical, creative and technical level. Seeing the full picture really boosted my confidence and gave me the insight I need to get rid of my problem areas.”
Roxanne R. – Singer (Toronto)
“With my limited budget I had been taking lessons that were doing more harm then good. You helped me work on a homework plan that keeps me focused on my goals in spite of the sporadic lessons I am able to take. I can really hear the difference. So can others. Thank you for your encouragement and support.”
Jennifer W. – Hobby Singer (Toronto)
“Donna helped me to go from my little voice to a big and powerful voice. I use her warm-up exercises every time before I go on stage to do my performance poetry - they bring out my voice. It's a very powerful place to come from when you're baring your soul on stage.”
Jill Binder – Performance Poet (Toronto)
“I appreciate having your CD. Yours is the best one I have ever used. It is a treasure as I have moved out of the country and I will not be able to take lessons for a while. Thank you so much!”
Rubin Rivera Rodeo (California USA)
*Rubin was assigned to serve in Baharan, Iran to work the oil wells. I’m very pleased to know that my vocal training CD will be there to help him continue to pursue his love of singing while doing such admirable work.
DANCERS NEEDED: I don't usually post for dancers but The Voice choreographer Mihran Kirakosian needs dancers for Blake Shelton's performance on an upcoming episode. You must be AFTRA. Please contact me if interested. If you meet his criteria I will give you his contact information to contact him directly.
“A Whole New Light” Documentary: A documentary about the life of Vivian Chong was filmed recently to be aired in December 2011 called “A Whole New Light”. What fun it was to have her producer and crew in my office to film Vivian during a vocal lesson to be included in the documentary. Vivian did not let her inability to see me stop her from doing what she wanted to do most, sing! It was a blast to film the segment with her. Thanks Vivian for your continual inspiration.