I teach healthy vocal technique grounded in a functional approach, through understanding of anatomy and physiology along with active listening, imagery, and movement exercises. I approach each student as an individual, and craft an individual approach for that voice. No two voices are alike: each voice is singular, so my approach for each voice is unique. I work with students of all abilities and levels of experience, from professional singers to absolute beginners, from high school students to adults. Areas of technical focus include register balance through teaching mixed voice: knitting registers together, strengthening all registers from lowest to highest, with a specially tuned ear to progressing smoothly through an unbroken middle range. While the end goal is to sing repertoire, much of each lesson is devoted to technical exercises to build strength, agility, flexibility, and control.
Singer Ilona Tipp creates music with a nearly endless palette of vocal colors through emotionally stirring performances. With early training in classical bel canto styles and later studies in jazz, blues, folk, and other styles “outside the box,” her seamless multi-style technique is employed not for its own sake, but in service of the feelings she seeks to evoke in the music of the moment.
Musical roots run deep in Ilona’s family: her maternal grandmother was a piano teacher who took long trolley rides in depression-era Kansas City in order to teach her students, and all the children in Ilona’s family learned to play the piano, and read music, as soon as their fingers could depress the keys. After many years of piano study, Ilona found her voice (both literally and figuratively!) in singing, and now journeys into songwriting and arranging as well, frequently accompanying herself on the keys.
Her songs and arrangements are infused with elements of R&B and blues as well as classical counterpoint. Heavily influenced by artists from Aretha Franklin to k. d. lang, from Joni Mitchell to Glenn Gould, from Ray Charles to Jamie Cullum, Ilona’s artistry and voice continue to evolve through performance explorations that include singing with art rock blues bands to synagogue choirs to swing-style Klezmer. Ilona performs all over New England and bounces primarily between Vermont and the Boston area. In addition to Longy, Ilona teaches at Berklee College of Music and maintains an online private studio with lessons in voice, songwriting, and ear training.
Ilona received her undergraduate and graduate degrees from New England Conservatory of Music.