The Division of Vocal Studies includes the departments of Voice and Opera Theater. Students in this division learn from faculty who have impressive performance and academic credentials. They develop students’ talents through courses in technique, performance readiness, linguistic style, staging, set design, and more.


Our faculty comprises outstanding teacher-performers who are devoted primarily to undergraduate education. They maintain their own professional performance schedules while providing individual instruction and teaching classes spanning diction, repertoire, professional development, and wellness. Oberlin voice faculty are noted for spending generous amounts of time with their students via lessons, coaching, mentoring, and more.

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We prepare voice students for exceptional careers in opera, oratorio, recital work, early music, and the music of today. Qualified advanced students may earn the Artist Diploma in vocal studies.

Every year, 20 to 30 gifted singers enter degree programs in the conservatory. These students receive weekly private instruction from faculty members with impressive performance and academic achievements, and take courses in pedagogy, performance readiness, musicianship, musical style, diction, linguistic accuracy, and professional development. All students participate in weekly studio classes.

Vocal studies students have a wealth of opportunities to perform—in for-credit choirs and chamber music ensembles, as featured soloists with some of the conservatory's large ensembles and orchestras, and with varied student-led ensembles including a cappella and musical theater groups that give performances during the academic year. Nearby Cleveland provides many professional opportunities for students.

Opera Theater is a vital  program in the vocal studies division. Courses include character development, body technique, directing, stage management, and more. Students have opportunities to perform in twice-yearly main-stage operas from the core repertory in Hall Auditorium, opera scenes presentations each semester, winter-term productions that feature new works, and student-directed productions.

Upcoming Vocal Studies Events

Vocal Studies News

Black woman singer on stage dressed in pink outfit.

Get to Know Tamara Jade ’12

November 9, 2020
The Voice sensation will meet Oberlin students November 11 as part of the Alumni CONnections Series.
socially distanced student musicians rehearsing together.

Out Loud and Outside

October 19, 2020
Oberlin College Choir sings in different ways for a different world.

Vocal Studies Facilities

exterior view of performing arts annex

Eric Baker Nord Performing Arts Annex

The Eric Baker Nord Performing Arts Annex brings together these three theaters to allow the Department of Theater to stage a range of productions—from experimental works to full-scale plays.
Hall Auditorium

Hall Auditorium

This 501-seat theater is used for large-scale opera, drama, and dance productions.
stage and seating area of wurtzel theater

Irene and Alan Wurtzel Theater

The Irene and Alan Wurtzel Theater is part of the Eric Baker Nord Performing Arts Annex. The accessible and highly adaptable theater can accommodate up to 300 seats.
Kulas Recital Hall

Kulas Recital Hall

With seating for 148, intimate Kulas is ideal for chamber music performances and solo recitals.
a room inside the vocal arts center

Otto B. Schoepfle Vocal Arts Center

Students can record, play back, and analyze vocal performances using sophisticated audio and video equipment. The lab features high-tech tools for examination of both the function and the timbre of the artistic singing voice.
Warner Concert Hall

Warner Concert Hall

This 496-seat hall adjoins the Conservatory of Music and is used for numerous student and faculty recitals, as well as recording sessions.