Voice Teachers

Jessica Waterhouse:

    Jessica Waterhouse is a musician regarded for her eclectic musical interests, passion for learning and teaching, and enthusiasm for the choral art. 
    She has spent the last 6 years as a middle school choir director in both the assistant and head director capacities. Choirs under her direction have won numerous superior ratings at UIL Contest, as well as various festival awards, including best in class and grand champion. 
    In addition to directing, Waterhouse is an avid researcher, constantly learning new ways to engage students in music. Most notably, Waterhouse creates and presents games as a quick way for not only teaching a concept, but also as a way to assess learning in her classroom. 
    Currently, Waterhouse teaches private voice for both middle and high school, as well as continuing her pursuit of games, engaged music classrooms, and student leadership.     She earned both her Bachelor of Music and Master of Music from Texas State University-San Marcos, studying with the late Leonore Sergi and Dr. Naymond Thomas.

Megan Stanley: 

    Megan is an experienced vocalist and violinist who began performing professionally at age 10 for various venues and events around Austin. Megan graduated from Westwood High School in 2004 and received a Bachelor of Music (BM) with a double emphasis in performance and music business from Belmont University in Nashville, TN in 2008. 
       After discovering a passion for teaching, Megan obtained certification to teach music K-12. She is Kodaly certified as well as G&T. She led an after school choir of over 60 fourth and fifth graders producing full length musicals in 2009-10.         Megan collaborated with other RRISD music teachers to create a district wide honor choir that performed at local events and charities in 2011. After teaching in RRISD for five years and receiving the “Teacher of the Year” award at her campus, Megan took some time off to raise her children at home.
     During this time she led a community church choir of 30 members and set up community performances for good causes around the greater Austin area. She taught a six week master vocal performance class at Riverbend School of Music in 2012. Megan currently teaches private violin and private vocal performance. Her energetic and positive attitude mixed with her drive and knowledge of her craft are appreciated by students seeking to further their natural talent. Her goal is to continue to help foster each student’s natural gifts and ability to perform, while developing a passion and confidence that will take them far beyond the choir room and beyond the music.
Chris Abdo:
    Chris holds a B.A in Voice from the University of North Texas. He was a member of UNT’s A Capella Choir, ranked among the top five undergraduate choirs in the nation. He has worked with a range of vocal teachers from many backgrounds, from a metropolitan opera star to voice science academics to professional singer-songwriters. This breadth of experience and research over the last 11 years has enabled him to refine the art of teaching someone how to sing so that it is effective and feels good for the singer to do, no matter where they start. For him, seeing the joy on a student’s face when they are able to stay in tune for the first time, or hearing their excitement on the phone when they tell him they’ve won a $20,000 college vocal scholarship, makes it easy for him to say that he really loves his job!

Laura Mercado-Wright: 
    Nominated for a Grammy® Award in 2015,  ​​has been lauded by The New York Times as “superb”, “dramatically astute” and “stunningly agile”.   
    Ms. Mercado-Wright performed the world-premiere of Charles Wuorinen's cantata It Happens Like This, a role she has reprised multiple times, including in 2015 at Carnegie Hall with The MET Chamber Ensemble under the baton of Maestro James Levine.  
    As a member of the Grammy® Award-winning vocal ensemble Conspirare, she has performed as a soloist on numerous occasions, and can be heard on the Harmonia Mundi label recording of two recent releases - Considering Matthew Shepard, and The Poet Sings: Pablo Neruda.  
She has appeared in performance with the MET Chamber Orchestra, the Boston Pops with Keith Lockhart, Tanglewood Music Festival, Ensemble Signal, Convergence Ensemble, Austin New Music Co-op, Voices of Change, Fort Worth Opera, Santa Fe Concert Association, Alamo City Opera, Fort Worth Symphony, Plano Symphony, Voces Intimae, The Chamber Music Society of Fort Worth, Cliburn at the Modern, Utah Festival Opera, Austin Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles New Music Festival with Southwest Chamber Ensemble, and the Slee Sinfonietta.  
    Recent engagements include Alto Soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Austin Symphony Orchestra, and as a featured soloist in Considering Matthew Shepard, a new American oratorio by Craig Hella Johnson that was filmed and recorded for PBS, and presented at Boston’s Symphony Hall. She also performed the the west coast premiere of Toshio Hosokawa’s one-woman opera, ​ ​ as part of the L.A. International New Music Festival.   
     Laura is a native of San Antonio, TX and received degrees from the University of North Texas (B.M.) and the University of Maryland Opera Studio (M.M.). www.lauramercadowright.com