Two music industry mavens have teamed up to launch a music education program for all ages in Chattanooga. The Chattanooga Music Academy will offer private instruction in voice and piano and will provide a comprehensive study of music technique, theory, history and performance. Various class packages will be offered based on a student’s desired outcome and level of experience, and both socially distanced, in-person lessons and virtual opportunities will be available. Registration is underway for the inaugural season, which begins in February 2021.
The Chattanooga Music Academy will be led by Executive Director Dr. Scott Willis, who will also teach voice. Dr. Willis serves on the voice faculty and as director of Opera at Berry College in Rome, and is the music director at Northside Presbyterian Church in Chattanooga. In 2016, he was a young artist with the Druid City Opera Workshop in Alabama, and in 2017, he was a young artist with Harrower Opera Workshop in Atlanta. Dr. Willis’ concert credits include baritone soloists in
Brahms’s Eines Deutsches Requiem with East Tennessee Symphony Orchestra, baritone soloist at the Spoleto Festival in Mozart’s Organ Solo Mass, Messiah and Bach’s Magnificat at MTSU, as well as baritone soloist in Bach’s B Minor Mass with the Nashville Symphony. He is an alumni of Middle Tennessee State University, East Carolina University and University of Alabama.
Kathleen Spencer, Chattanooga Music Academy co-founder, will offer lessons in voice and piano.
Ms. Spencer hails from New York City, where she co-founded City Lyric Opera in 2016. Under her executive directorship, City Lyric Opera has become one of the most sought after local opera companies in New York City, officials said. Ms. Spencer has produced eight full opera’s in New York City, along with numerous events and concerts that utilized talented locals who have since launched international careers. She’s known for creating "an inclusive and collaborative space for local artists to grow, thrive and create." She is an alumni of the Manhattan School of Music and Middle Tennessee State University.
Dr. Willis said of the launch, “Chattanooga is a special city to me--a city that is thriving with talented
artists of all ages and levels. I am thrilled to bring Chattanooga Music Academy to this city and give each of these individuals an opportunity to grow, learn and thrive.”
Ms. Spencer, who has relocated to Chattanooga, said, “I am so excited to invest in the local artists of Chattanooga and in our community. This city is crawling with creatives and I can’t wait to foster this
talent at Chattanooga Music Academy.”