Background, professional training and performance history
Vicki Brabham is a native Eugenian with a Liberal Arts degree from Northwest Christian University (B.S. Interdisciplinary Studies & Communication, 1988). An early interest in gospel & popular music, musical theatre, and jazz, guided her to seek a diverse palette of professional environments. Many are surprised to learn that Vicki does not hold an “actual” music degree. “Life experience has awarded me multiple degrees, with as many hours logged on the bench to consider myself a pilot more than a passenger.” In the course of pursuing performing opportunities, Vicki opened a studio for private instruction. Embracing students of all ages, the goal was to keep the music fun, the relationship healthy, and commit to the long-term. With a handful of students, Vicki coached them as grade school beginners through their graduation from high school. “Looking back over 20+ years, giving piano lessons to those kids was one of my greatest joys and most rewarding accomplishments.” Vicki loves music of all varieties, is well (enough) versed in digital technology to help navigate the perils of keyboards, computers, and multi-track recording, and enjoys coaching students in composition, improvisation, and on-line tutorials. “It took my own young son’s interest in YouTube to convince me that it is a valid and exciting medium by which to learn, adding to both the self-motivation and enjoyment of music for those who shy away from a traditional sight-reading program.” Vicki also enjoys accompanying and coaching singers, helping them to develop repertoire that strengthens and showcases their own style, range, and personality. “Collaborating to turn a Sting song into a sultry jazz-ballad, or a hymn into a ragtime, would be a really fun way to spend an hour together.”
Artist statement and teaching philosophy
Vicki tells students to practice with the abandon and care-free repetition of a child, but with the discipline and perseverance of an adult. “Just keep putting one foot in front of the other, and when you look back you’ll see you really have come a lot farther than you even thought was possible.” And with nearly a 40 year career as a professional (or, at least an elevated amateur), she has covered a lot of ground.
Instruments & classes taught
Vicki oversees The Shedd's musical theatre and keyboard departments and is the lead instructor of its Musical Theatre Training Academy. She also teaches voice.
|Feb 6-15||Jazz Kings 2014-15||Avalon|