Private lessons in Voice, Songwriting, Music Theory and More

VOICE LESSONSfree your voice - vocal technique studio by dr janice jarrett

VTS Pedagogy/Approach  Good technique frees you to sing well with expression and feeling. There is nothing like it. Of all the different vocal techniques I tried over the years, I found the tradition of “relaxed” or “open throat” singing, informed by the Bel Canto tradition, the most effective in increasing range, power, agility, good intonation, resonance, and long-term vocal health.

Technique  From years of singing, and those I sorted out from previous voice teachers came more into focus when I met my mentor, the late Roland Wyatt. He was an expert on relaxed singing and the physiology of the voice. He encouraged me to open a studio, an endorsement I will always cherish. His instruction for my personal vocal development was invaluable.

Your Goal  The focus of VTS is on learning how to develop your voice as a fully expressive instrument – safely. When you acquire healthy vocal habits: how to warm up, how to “connect the breath,” and develop better range and tuning, you will have the versatility and capability to sing the repertoire that most moves you with greater personal expressiveness. I can’t emphasize enough: technique frees you. And the confidence that comes with it is crucial to accessing your potential.

The larger concept of your “voice” not only applies to your singing voice, but to your unique mind, body and spirit in one – the process of evolving self expression and self-realization we all experience.

What is your goal or issue? Are you worried about being “pitchy?” (The current industry word for out of tune.)  Don’t feel like you have enough breath? Or range? Maybe “performance anxiety” is a challenge. Do you get hoarse, or your throat hurts after singing?  Want to catch up on music theory? Do you have an upcoming recording or audition you would like to be more confident about?
A First Lesson at Vocal Technique Studio can help you evaluate and understand your next steps to easier and more powerful singing. Access a free PDF detailing a First Lesson here.

“I’m learning more music, better rhythm and even singing harmony. Thank you so  much for your help. I could list many things you’ve helped with, but I especially thank you for helping me through the anxiety about performing in front of someone, well, you namely. You have a special talent for that!” Best regards, Roy C.  (For more references.)

Individualized Lessons   Lessons are student-centered: arranged and personalized to support student goals and preferences. As the studio developed, students became more diverse in age, experience, and preferred genres. Given my background, I welcome being a resource for achieving these goals.

Enhancing Musicianship Skills

    • When I started getting singer/songwriters in the studio, it became important to link how they were singing (intonation, intelligibility) with what they were singing (content and form), so I began to integrate songwriting and music theory into their sessions.
      • High school and college students can benefit from help with sight-singing, ear training, music theory, or ensemble and rehearsal techniques.
    • Even casual singers have been happy to feel more polished and knowledgeable.
      • Many bands can use simple methods to notate their songs and make their rehearsals more productive.
        • I created “Piano for Singers, for some of my long-term voice students who wanted to learn how to accompany themselves. Another student is following the same process on guitar. We focus on song forms, styles, chords, voicings, and rhythmic approaches to self-accompaniment. The focus of the lessons is heavily on application rather than memorization.

Click here for free PDFs for the VTS “Approach to Teaching MusicTheory & Songwriting,Theory VTS

“I’ve been wanting to learn how to read music and play piano forever, but couldn’t find the time….and I needed a teacher that would be easy-going. I first tried Janice’s jazz-singing class, which was fun. Then I attended her music theory class and it was a bargain.- her ability to teach this course is unquestionable. I can’t believe how much progress I’ve made… she is always patient, encouraging and supportive.” Tiffany M.

For information on opportunities for groups, or booking a session with your ensemble or chorus, use the Contact Form, and for more info please visit the Workshops Page.  Here’s a new benefit of the Music Theory lessons posted to FaceBook I had not heard of before:

I finished FFXIV Endwalker last night and my mind is still blown over how good it is, especially the music. The way that video game uses music, weaving intricate parts of a song to create the emotions they want you to feel is mind blowing. I’m so glad that I’ve been taking music and music theory with Janice Jarrett so I can appreciate what was being done on a technical level.

Beautiful game, beautiful music and awesome teacher to help me appreciate it. ( Lynette Millingoton)

Click here for more of  What Students Say

(Please note: I periodically schedule a limited series of reserve-space, distinctly affordable, small-group music theory workshops. These currently can be scheduled through Zoom or FaceTime, or in-person for small vaccinated groups.)

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Most often lessons are weekly. Younger students (7 years old -middle school) are advised to take half-hour to 45-minute lessons. Older or more experienced students can benefit from 45 minutes to hour lessons. There is always some fluctuation in schedules, so if the first available slot is not the best option, we can generally find a better one once in the studio.


 “First Lessonwith no obligation to return is offered to help students determine if VTS is what they are looking for.  Fee schedules are flexible to suit student rhythm; some pay per lesson, some pay for 2 or more at a time. To learn fees and availability please use the Contact form.

Cancellations:  I request at least a 24-hour notice. Many instructors just charge for a missed lesson, but first I prefer that the student and I make every effort to schedule a makeup lesson within a reasonably short time. We can also extend future lessons by 15-minute increments to make up the instruction missed. Most students understand that their scheduled lesson time was not available to another student to book.

Please Note: Want a Gift Certificate for lessons for a special someone? Please Email for more.


For a more detailed resume please visit the Academic Bio page. Access a PDF of Brief Credentials.

Ph.D. Ethnomusicology, M.A. World Music, Wesleyan University, CT
B. A. Music, Voice & Composition, Antioch College, OH

Teaching and Performing

During my undergraduate and graduate studies, and as a professor, I performed and produced concerts, workshops, and small festivals including students and visiting artists. While pursuing graduate degrees, I performed in a variety of states and abroad, including international tours with composer Steve Reich’s ensemble. While a professor in Michigan, my students and I performed in concerts together, organized small festivals, and played in local venues. I have been an instructor from grade school to university level, from educational institutions to community arts programs, to my studio.

The 5-voice vocal jazz group I led in Los Angeles, “Borrowed Time,” grew to be one of the most respected Vocal Jazz groups in LA for over 10 years. I wrote the bulk of Borrowed Time’s lyrics and arrangements of songs by outstanding composers. I perform occasionally in my ensembles as “JJJazz,” in duos to larger groups in Los Angeles, and in Tucson, where the studio is based.  (For a fuller bio go to About JJ.)

Memberships Include

National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), Jazz Journalist Association, AFM Local 33, Jazz Education Network (JEN), National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA).