Ryan Lustgarten

Voice Instructor
Jazz / Popular Voice
Classical Voice
Program Area: 
Private Instruction
With Music Institute of Chicago since: 

M.M. In Opera Performance - Northwestern University (Ongoing)

B.M. in Voice Performance - Washington State University 

Significant teachers and mentors: 

W. Stephen Smith - Voice Teacher at Northwestern University

Dr. Howard Watkins - Chorus Master at the Metropolitan Opera

Jeffrey Buchman - Internationally working director from whom I learned all that I know of how to be effective on stage

Teaching philosophy and areas of expertise: 

Ryan teaches voice to students of all ages and backgrounds. His primary goal has always been to help each of his students discover, hone, and love the voice that was given uniquely to them. Above all else, Ryan believes that healthy vocal production and longevity of the voice are the keys to beautiful, emotionally effective singing. Whether the student is looking to establish a foundation of vocal technique, or looking to advance specific areas of their singing, Ryan is more than able to cater his teaching methodology to align with each individual student's goals. Ryan has a background in Classical, Musical Theater, and Pop singing, and enjoys teaching in any and all styles!

Awards and achievements: 

Brancaleoni International Music Festival Full Scholarship Recipient 2017, 2018

Northwestern University Merit Scholarship Holder 2018 - present

Professional affiliations & activities: 

Ryan has been engaged performing and teaching both in the Seattle and Chicago areas for the last three years. He has performed numerous concert and operatic works as a professional soloist during that time including Mozart's Requiem, Handel's Messiah, Beethoven's 9th Symphony, and more! Ryan was a Young Artist Fellow at the Brancaleoni International Music Festival based in Piobbico, Italy in both 2017 and 2018, where he performed leading roles in Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore, and Puccini's Gianni Schicchi respectively. Ryan has been attending Northwestern University pursuing a Master's Degree for the last year. During this year he was in charge of teaching undergraduate non-major voice students, and performed multiple lead roles for Northwestern's opera program.

Interests outside of music: 

Soccer, Tennis, Board Games, Reading, and trying new foods!

Favorite practice tip: 

1) Set up a weekly practice schedule and stick to it! Developing one's sense of discipline outside of the practice room is every bit as important as the work one does during their practice sessions.

2) Define each and every practice session with a short list of specific goals! I find that practicing not only becomes less daunting with attainable goals in mind, but also that I am able to stay more focused on what I want to achieve in the practice room on any given day.

Favorite composer or piece to play: 

Donizetti's opera L'elisir d'amore (The Elixir of Love)

Favorite musical moment: 

Singing the aria "Una Furtiva Lagrima" in the courtyard of a Renaissance-era castle in Italy to a full crowd of Italians.