OMTA District Achievement 2019!

DATE: Saturday April 13, 2019

LOCATION: Oklahoma Christian University, Edmond



Student Name
Student Name
District Level Solo Piano Performance (if none, leave blank)
District Level Solo Piano Performance (if none, leave blank)
Competition Date: Saturday, April 13th
Enrollment Fee *
A PayPal money request will be sent. House Members will receive 15% OFF enrollment!

2019 Audition Season!

2019 summer camps and intensives



*You should have your OCU audition video filmed and mailed by February 15th, 2019!

 OCU High School Pre-College Intensive 

June 26 – July 6, 2019

Ages: 9th-12th Grade

Tuition: $1,500

Application Fee: $50 if registering before May 1 ($75 starting on May 1)

Tuition: $1,500

This 10-Day Intensive is intended for high school students who plan to pursue Musical Theater, Acting or Vocal Performance at the college level.  Each student will receive diagnostic feedback in the areas of Voice, Acting and Dance.


OCU High School Music Theater Program

June 26 - July 28, 2019

Ages: 9th -12th Grade

Tuition: $6,000

Application Fee: $50 if registering before May 1 ($75 starting on May 1)

Our 4-Week High School Music Theater Program is meant to give high school students the true OKCU college experience as students participate in daily classes, masterclasses, and rehearsals. The first 10 days will include our new “OCU Pre-College Intensive” where students will receive diagnostic feedback in the areas of Voice, Acting and Dance. 


OCU Junior High Music Theater Program

June 29 - July 13, 2019

Ages: 5th-8th Grade

Tuition: $3,000

Application Fee: $50 if registering before May 1 ($75 starting on May 1)

The Junior High Music Theater Program is a two-week residential program specifically designed for students who have an interest in the arts and want to cultivate their artistic talents. Our acclaimed program draws students from all over the nation and provides them with an exciting introduction to musical theater. All students will perform in the fully staged musical at the end of the session.



Broadway Bootcamp with Kristen Chenoweth

June 9 - 15, 2019

Ages: 9th-12th Grade

Tuition: $300

Audition Deadline: February 15th, 2019




UCO Summer Jazz Camp

June 2019, TBA

Ages: 14 and older with 2 years of playing experience

Tuition: $350

*Only Accepting Guitar, Bass, and Piano applications* Join the award-winning UCO Jazz Program for a jam-packed week designed to get YOU playing jazz! Participate daily in combos, masterclasses, improv & theory sessions, jazz history presentations, big band reading sessions and jam sessions in a fun and relaxed environment. Space is limited. $350 tuition fee includes an official camp t-shirt and two special group meals. Convenient on-campus housing is available with rates starting at $35 per night. Private lessons will be offered for $25 per lesson. 




OSAI @ Quartz Mountain

June 8 - 23, 2019

Ages: 15-19

Tuition: Commitment fee of $290. Every accepted student receives a scholarship to attend OSAI.

Application Fee: $20 for first discipline, $15 for each additional

The Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute (OSAI) is an intensive 2-week residential school that provides professional training to artistically talented OKLAHOMA HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS, including graduating seniors, in the visual, literary, and performing arts. We offer training in the disciplines of acting, chorus, creative writing, dance, drawing and painting, film and video, orchestra, and photography. OSAI faculty artists include winners of the Pulitzer Prize and the Academy, Grammy, Emmy, and Tony Awards. You’ll join over 250 students from across the state as you study your chosen field and attend or participate in performances, gallery openings, film screenings, poetry readings, and more. Optional activities include nature hikes, karaoke night, movie night, a talent show, and all-camp dances. You’ll make lifelong friends and study with amazing teachers for a summer experience you’ll never forget. Disciplines: Acting, Chorus, Creative Writing, Dance, Drawing and Painting, Film and Video, Orchestra, Photography.



Summer Commercial Music Jobs


Frontier City Summer Season Open Call

Audition: February 2nd, 2019

Ages: singers and actors 16 and older

Note from the casting director: “The schedule won’t be set until after auditions. Last summer the schedule was roughly 11:30-6:00 PM. Our show director/choreographer recommends working 5 days and having 2 days off. But, some people want to work more than 5. I would highly recommend that students come and audition for the experience, fun and networking and if the schedule doesn’t end up working out for them they don’t have to accept a contract if offered one.”



Local Community Theater




Auditions for 2019 Season: February 10 - 16, 2019

Callbacks: February 17th, 2019

Ages Ranges: Children (8-15), Apprentice (16-17), Adult (18 and older)

ONLINE SIGNUP IS NOW LIVE! Please sign up for each applicable audition online.




Auditions for Summer 2019 Season: March 2019, TBA

Ages: 8-16

TLH student Avery Hamlin reviews January Album of the Month

The greatness of “The Greatest Showman: Reimagined”

by Avery Hamlin, Memorial Contributing Writer


The movie, The Greatest Showman, released Dec. 8 of last year, is known for its critically acclaimed soundtrack. With such great feedback from “The Hamilton Mixtape,” released in 2016, Atlantic Records saw no reason not to share their successful album with famous musicians and singers. Thus, “The Greatest Show: Reimagined” was created; the album features popular artists such as: Panic! At The Disco, Pink, Kelly Clarkson, James Arthur, Sara Bareilles, Zac Brown Band, Pentatonix and Kesha appearing in bonus tracks.

The album starts off with “The Greatest Show,” sung by Panic! At The Disco (P!ATD) where Brendon Urie adds his own personal flair by beginning the song with a similar style to his song, “Death of a Bachelor.” His voice perfectly fits with Hugh Jackman’s and does not disappoint. Along with P!ATD singing “The Greatest Show,” the album features Pentatonix in a bonus track of the same song. Their acapella twist certainly makes it unique, but it did not live up to the high standards created by P!ATD and Jackman.

Clarkson is widely known for her powerful belt and strong vocals. It only seems right to give Clarkson “Never Enough” and this isn’t her first time on a remake album. She appeared on The Hamilton Mixtape in 2016, singing one of Hamilton’s legendary songs, “It’s Quiet Uptown.” Clarkson has an amazing over-the-top voice, but there seems to be a line that has to be drawn. When seeing Clarkson’s name on the album, I was automatically thrilled and excited to see what she has done with “Never Enough,” an already extremely impressive and well-sung song by Loren Allred. However, I was sadly disappointed.. The remake added too many effects with a beat that seemed it could have fit perfectly in a rap song, but not a song this delicate and calm.

Bareilles is commonly known for jazzy spinoffs on classics and she has not failed to amaze. One of the most romantic songs in the film known as “Tightrope” originally sung by Michelle Williams takes a new turn with the voice of Bareilles transforming it into a slow heartfelt ballad. She keeps somewhat to that same tempo to stay true to the original song, but adds dreamy harmonizations and vocals.

While looking through the album for the first time, it was shocking to come across the Zac Brown Band. They seemed to be an odd choice for a soundtrack like “The Greatest Showman” and the song, “From Now On,” didn’t appear fit their style considering it begins with a slow piano and fits in a different genre from the band’s most popular songs, “Chicken Fried,” “Colder Weather” and “As She’s Walking Away.” Zac Brown Band’s version of the song mixes it up by beginning the song with a faster paced banjo that makes it sound nothing near the original. Zac Brown’s extraordinary voice gives the listener shivers as he completely transforms the lyrics. He adds different dynamics to articulate and emphasize certain important lines and this is the type of song that could be played over and over again and I would never grow tired.

“The Greatest Showman: Reimagined” has won my heart. Seeing popular artists of all different backgrounds coming together to work on the same project amazes me. The variety and amount of selection this soundtrack gives makes sure every person, from any age group, has a song they can relate to and sing along to. This is not any normal children’s musical soundtrack, like “Frozen”… this is “The Greatest Showman: Reimagined.”

Click HERE to view original article from The Edmond Sun.


November Masterclass: "Circle of Fifths Explained" with Tara Palmer


Sat, Nov 10th

“Circle of Fifths Explained” with Tara Palmer

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Student Name *
Student Name
Parent/Guardian Name *
Parent/Guardian Name

October Masterclass: "All-State Audition Prep"

Fall 2018 Masterclass Series: October

“ALL-STATE AUDITION PREP” with vocalist and coach, Alexandria Carmon Skinner

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Name *
Parent / Guardian Name *
Parent / Guardian Name

Alexandria Carmon Skinner

Alexandria Carmon.jpg

is a Texas native who currently resides in Edmond and is pursuing two master’s degrees, one in Vocal Pedagogy and the other in Vocal Performance from the University of Central Oklahoma. She is a singer, teacher, and vocal scientist with a passion for educating and helping students grow and reach their musical goals.

She moved to Oklahoma in 2012, where she achieved her bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance from Northwestern Oklahoma State University in Alva, Oklahoma. In 2016 she was cast in her first professional opera, performing the role of Mercedes in Bizet’s Carmen with the Enid Symphony Orchestra. Since then, she has performed various roles in shows with Painted Sky Opera, Red River Lyric Opera, and the University of Central Oklahoma. As a growing Lyric Soprano, she is studying roles from major operas such as Puccini’s La Bohème, Bizet’s Carmen, Mozart’s Così fan Tutte, and Floyd’s Susannah under the tutelage of Dr. Barbara Fox DeMaio.

As a teacher she works to instill a firm basis of technique in her voice, piano, and music students. She believes that establishing a foundation of healthy music making is the key to developing a lifelong interest in music in either a casual or professional setting. Alexandria’s method varies from student to student and adapts to the way they learn best. Though she performs mostly opera, she teaches all styles from musical theatre to contemporary commercial music. All styles are based on learning music fundamentals such as posture, breathing, warmups and cool downs, reading notes and rhythms, pitch matching and musical terminology.

Alexandria is an assistant teacher of vocal and elementary music at Cashion Public Schools and the Educational Outreach Coordinator for Painted Sky Opera where works to establish an appreciation of the arts in school-aged children. She also co-manages the Oklahoma City chapter of Opera on Tap with her friend and colleague, Danielle L Herrington, and works hard to make opera a more accessible art form for those who have never been exposed to it.

YouTube Skills: Gear and Equipment

Hey, Lesson House— Tara here!

Last week’s “Intro to Youtube Skills” masterclass was one of my favorites we’ve done so far. If you missed it, don’t worry- I will most definitely host another. And for those who came to this Intro class, I’m putting together a Level 2 class for you so we can learn even more and dig in deeper!

We spent most of our time practicing framing and lighting shots that look well thought-out and professional. (Getting the exposure right is crucial!) We worked with our phones and a few different pieces of simple equipment.

Here are some links to the devices we used in the masterclass, and a few others you might want to invest in when you’re ready to take your video production to the next level!

As always, I’m here for anything you need or questions you may have. You can always reach me at Light and love,



Selfie Light w/ Phone Clamp and Universal Arm: *option w/remote!

Table Mount:

Clamp Flex Mount:

Mini Tripod w/ Bluetooth Remote:

Tripod w/ Selfie Light:

50” Tripod:

Shutter Remote:

LED Panel Light:

Umbrella Light:

USB Microphones: (record directly into your phone!)

Blue Snowball:

Condenser “Studio” Mic:

Condenser “Studio” Mic w/ Filter:

OTG (on-the-go) Adapter:


Open Camera allows your device (phone) to use external audio from a USB mic.

iMovie is one of the best and most streamlined video editing apps. You can use the software program on your Macintosh computer or download the device-friendly app!

August masterclass brings Bobbi Holliday to TLH!


"Songwriting" with singer/songwriter and vocal coach Bobbi Holliday 

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Bobbi Holliday is a singer. songwriter. and dreamer, based in Woodward, Oklahoma. For all of her 26 years music has been part of her being. She has been on the stage since she was 3 years old and wrote her first song at the age of 7. Bobbi has had her songs on the radio, written theme songs for award winning indie films, Performed for the likes of Duck Dynasty Stars Phil and Kay Robertson, The Oklahoma City Thunder and many more. Her strong family connection has continued throughout her career as she claims her favorite performances are when her husband, Nathan and brother, Chris are playing beside her. Grounded in her faith and propelled by a desire to entertain, Bobbi Holliday is ready for the here and now. The question is - are you ready for Bobbi Holliday? 

Have you ever wondered how to take your finished song and turn it into a successful product? How to build great co-write relationships? The secret to writing a hit song? In this months Masterclass, Bobbi will answer all these questions and more as she covers everything from the creative side of songwriting to the business side. Enroll below! 


Name *


Hey, Lesson House! Tara here. :)

Recently I've had some adults and fellow musicians ask about booking lessons, so I decided to do a promotion for the month of June! If you've been wanting to turn it up a notch with your music but you're not sure how or what that means for you- come see me. Your first lesson is FREE! Click HERE to book your lesson and let's make some music.

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April Masterclass brings Emily McCumber to TLH!

Spring 2018 Masterclass Series: April

"Stage Performance" with singer/songwriter and vocal coach Emily McCumber

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Emily is a vocal coach at Maughan Studios School of Music in Oklahoma City. Emily’s performance experience began at an early age singing at festivals and community events in the Oklahoma City area. She has entertained at the State Capital, the Governor’s Mansion, ACM rocks Bricktown, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, the Rodeo Opry, The Poncan Opry (Ponca City), the Oklahoma Opry, Johnnie High”s Country Music Revue (Ft. Worth, TX), Sac & Fox Casinos (Shawnee/Stroud), Koma Fan Jam, Grape Ranch (Okemah), Festival of Arts, Integris Health’s road shows at various hospitals in Oklahoma, and many other venues around the state.

Emily currently performs with the Royal Dukes cover band at private parties and corporate events, and she is also half of an acoustic duo called “ME” with her friend Matt Cowell. ME performs weekly at Hensleys’s Top Shelf Grill in Yukon.
In addition to singing, Emily is an aspiring actress. She has appeared in local and national TV commercials, industrial films, and print ads. She was chosen for a role in a video and state-wide billboard campaign sponsored by Oklahoma State Board of Regents for Higher Education.

The stage should feel like your home away from home. You should walk into any environment and feel confident and composed- but this takes time, practice, and experience. At the Stage Performance Workshop, you will learn various methods and techniques that will take your stage presence to the next level. You will gain insight on how to present yourself authentically, how to connect with your audience, and tips and tricks on how to enhance your overall performance. 

Students will be expected to prepare one song to perform at the workshop with Emily. (Bonus points if you prepare two songs in contrasting styles!) This is a great time to pull out that song you'll be performing in the Spring Recital, Arts Festival, or the school musical! 

Limited spots available. Sign up under the "Events" tab to reserve your spot! 

  • Saturday, April 7th
  • 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
  • Rosenbalm Academy of Music
  • $25 per student/FREE with House Membership Package

2018 OKC Festival of the arts

We are thrilled to announce that The Lesson House has once again been selected by the Oklahoma Arts Council to participate in the 2018 Festival of the Arts! 

The show will be on Saturday, April 28th at 6:00 pm on the Main Stage. We have a limited time slot, so not all students will be able to perform. We will be holding auditions via video submissions. PLEASE check your calendar and make sure you can commit to attending this event before you send in your audition. To audition, you will be required to submit a video of yourself performing a full song. All videos must be submitted to by Friday, March 23rd at 9:00 pm. 


Audition videos are something every performer needs to learn! Self-tape auditioning streamlines the casting process and will only become more common in music, film, and television casting. Casting directors look at hundreds of audition tapes a year, so a performer should do anything they can to make their audition stand out.

Learning to produce a good self-tape auditions can make all the difference in future casting decisions. By informing yourself and using the best possible practices, you can put yourself ahead of the pack and nail your next self-tape audition. And what better place to learn than at home with The Lesson House! 

Here are some tips to make sure you nail your audition video:

1. Record your audition with a clean, neutral background like a plain wall that receives plenty of natural light. Or in a room where you can control the light. (soft lighting is best, no fluorescents!) In general, make sure you can be seen and heard clearly and easily. 

2. Frame yourself in a medium shot, so your torso and head are the focus. 

3. Slate/Introduction. Looking at the camera, introduce yourself and the song you will be singing. Use this time to show off your personality! 

4. Select your outfit wisely. Don't wear anything too busy or bright and avoid prints. Remember, this is an audition. You may be in your house, but dress like you would for any live audition. General rules: NO flip flops, NO sweatpants/activewear, NO hats that cover your face.

5. Have someone there to cue up your music for you and help with recording. If you have a tripod to keep the camera steady-awesome! If not, get an experienced selfie taker to help you get creative with keeping the camera still and steady.

6. Most importantly- have FUN! 

As always, if you have any questions we are here to guide you. Ask your instructor if you are unsure about your audition video. We're here to help! 

Good luck! 


One Minute Monologues

Hello! We are SO excited for the students who will be joining us for the Acting 101 masterclass this weekend! We've talked a little bit about what to prepare:

- Please prepare a one minute monologue from a stage play. If you are unfamiliar with where to find the best material for you, first of all, we're glad you're coming to the class! Mr. Dema will take some time addressing just that. If you can't find a monologue from a stage play, any monologue from film or TV will do. Just be sure to choose something that is suitable for your age. 

If you are new to this, THAT IS OKAY! Something you'll learn is that acting techniques for film and television can be very different when it comes to acting for the stage. So, working with the right material is important. Take a look at this post from Stage Agent to read some recommended monologues from reputable playwrights!

Make sure to have your monologue memorized so that you can make the most of your coaching time with Mr. Dema!


February Masterclass brings Andi Dema to TLH!

Spring 2018 Masterclass Series: February

"Acting 101" with actor and director Andi Dema


Andi Dema is an Albanian-American actor who has been working professionally-- locally, and around the country-- for the past decade. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting from Oklahoma City University and is currently the Theatre Director at Casady School.

Some of Dema's favorite past roles include Fred in A Christmas Carol and Ali Hakim in Oklahoma! with Lyric Theatre, Adam in Cmplt Wrks of WllmShkspre (Abridged) and Cloten in Cymbeline  with Texas Shakespeare Festival, and Jack Worthing in The Importance of Being Earnest with Oklahoma City Repertory Theatre. 


Is your headshot really that important?

...YES! Your headshot is a crucial part of your package- in fact, it’s the front cover! We always say that your audition starts as soon as you walk in the room; but your headshot is what gets you in the room in the first place. It’s the single most important marketing tool for a performer. Don’t cut corners! When that little headshot jpeg pops up on a casting director’s computer or placed in a stack in front of them, you want them to say, “Yes, bring that person in!” Not “Yikes, that kid kinda scares me.” Make sure your first impression sets you up for success!

You want to be seen as a pro, not an amateur, so the way you present yourself in your picture is everything. If you want people to take you seriously, you must have a current (within the last year), high quality, killer headshot. Not an iPhone pic, not an instagram photo of you outside with the wind gently blowing your hair, and not a JCPenney glamour shot with palm trees in the background that you printed at Walgreens. Save those for Nanna's mantel. :)

Here are some great tips from Piyali Syam at

Make sure it looks like you. 

Casting directors expect you to look just like your headshot, and will not be happy when you show up looking totally different, or 10 years older. It’s not about looking pretty, it’s about representing your type, age wrinkles included. Girls, be yourself, do your hair the way you would for every audition. You should have at least two to three looks. It’s standard to have a theatrical, more serious shot, and a smiling commercial shot showing your teeth. 

Yes, lots can be done with retouching. There is no need to put on tons of makeup. You want to look like yourself on your best day- not look like you tried too hard. It should look like you as you are now. It’s not about the type you want to be, it’s the type you are. Your headshot should show casting directors both the intangibles and tangibles of you as an actor: how you look on camera/stage, your essence, your energy and personality. Casting directors want to see who you are, what you bring to the table, and why you’re worth bringing in for an audition.


Simplicity is key for headshot wardrobe: the focus in your headshot should be squarely on you: not your clothes. Busy patterns and large, distracting jewelry are a no-go. Bright jewel tones are best: red, blue, green, yellow...any solid, primary color. You know what looks best on you: pick colors that bring out your eyes and compliment your skin tone. Layers are a good way to give a second "look." Stay away from white (which can wash you out) and black (which can give the illusion of absorbing light from the rest of the photo).

We are thrilled to have portrait photographer, Tony Dillard, offer this opportunity to students of The Lesson House. Tony says, "Anything I can do to help young performers get their names out there!" 

Saturday, January 20th

  • 2 looks (1 outfit change)
  • 10-15 images (sent digitally, formatted 8x10) 
  • $75.00 / 15% off for House Members! 

Tony Dillard is a Oklahoma-based portrait photographer and documentarian. A lover of new places and things, Tony's storytelling extends across 12 different countries, and counting. His resume includes work with dozens of local directors, businesses and churches. Tony's desire to serve and yearning curiosity for the new have already led him to some beautifully troubled places, but his appetite for exposure keeps him going, striving toward new opportunities. "I want to see everything and go everywhere and do everything. I want to leave the world a little better than I found it."

To read more about Tony's adventures and see more of his work, visit

Join us in giving this Christmas!

This year we are partnering with the Tulsa Dream Center to provide toys and coats for children in need this Christmas! We will be collecting donations at The Lesson House Christmas Showcase on Monday, December 11th at the UCO Jazz Lab. If you are planning to attend the show, we would love for you to contribute to the cause by bringing an unwrapped toy (ages 0-17) or a new or gently used coat (all ages) as a form of admission. Make sure you share with any friends and family that are attending! THANK YOU in advance for making this possible. Giving is so so good, isn't it? Merry Christmas!


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