Music Faculty

Dr. Susan Smith

Dr. Susan Smith

Dr. Susan Smith, Professor of Voice, is Director of Vocal Studies and teaches applied voice, music theory, vocal pedagogy, and vocal diction and literature. Dr. Smith produces and directs the annual Voice Majors Recital Evening known as ONSTAGE, a production designed to showcase voice majors' talents in opera, art song, and musical theatre. Her voice students have placed in state and regional auditions sponsored by the National Association of Teachers of Singing, and have appeared with the Heartland Opera and the Springfield Regional Opera.

Susan Smith is in high demand as an adjudicator and clinician, working with students under the sponsorship of NATS, ACDA, and MENC. In 1998, Dr. Smith presented a session at the Missouri MEA Conference/Clinic entitled "A Fresh Approach to Musical Theatre in the Public School." She was invited back in 2001 to present "Creating the Creative Mind: Aesthetics Across the Board." Both of these topics were born out of her passionate belief that all music education needs to be a student-centered, aesthetically conceived curriculum. She continues to develop music educator workshops on such topics as "The Ten Best Ways to Ruin Your Voice" and "Never Teach a Pig to Sing."

Dr. Smith maintains a professional performance schedule, regularly presenting solo art song reccitals and musical theatre reviews as well as appearing as guest artist with the Heartland Opera, Southwest Missouri Arts Council, the Springfield Art Song Festival, and MENC Music in Our Schools. Some of her stage roles include Frasquita in Carmen, Lady Billows in Albert Herring, Lucy in The Telephone, La Ciesca in Gianni Schicchi, and Marian in The Music Man. On their 1999 and 2001 European tours, Dr. Smith was privileged to sing with the Missouri Southern Chamber Singers under the direction of Mr. Bud Clark in such musical centers as Rome, Florence, Paris, and Vienna.

In 1996 and 1997, Dr. Smith was invited to direct and act with the professional Clinton (Iowa) Area Showboat Theatre. Some of her directing credits in musical theatre include My Fair Lady, Gypsy, Into the Woods, Peter Pan, Side by Side by Sondheim, as well as numerous theatrical revues and opera scenes programs.

A transplanted northerner, Dr. Smith received her Bachelor of Music degree in vocal performance from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and Certification in K-12 Vocal/General Music from UW-River Falls. She holds Master of Music and Doctor of Arts degrees in vocal performance from the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley.

Courses Taught Class Listing
  • 102/302 and 202/302 Opera or Musical Theatre Performance
  • 111 - Music Theory I
  • 133 - Opera
  • 215 Vocal Pedagogy
  • 219 Vocal Diction and Literature
  • 243 Musical Theatre
  • 450 Senior Recital
  • Applied Music Voice - Elective and Major