Parks & Rec. offering new vocal performance course

The course kicks off this May.

By: Amy Filippone, Dept. of Parks & Recreation

For the first time, the Moorestown Parks and Recreation Department is offering a “Vocal Performance Course.” It will be for two age groups: ages 15 to 19 will meet on Wednesdays from 6 to 8 p.m. for four weeks 6–8pm for four May 1 through May 22. Ages 10 to 14 will meet on Fridays from 4 to 6 p.m. for four weeks from May 3 to May 24.

The instructor, Courtney Halpin, is a 2009 Moorestown High School graduate. She attended Berklee College of Music (her instrument was voice) where she majored in music therapy. Her love of performing kept her busy even as a student.

“I’ve always loved performing,” Halpin said. “By my senior year, I was performing four nights a week.”

Her six-month internship for her major brought back to the area where she worked at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Since then, she has continued to perform and write original material under the name CORii. She pursued her career in Los Angeles for years and has just heard that one of her songs has been selected to be in a television show or a promo for a show.

Thankfully she’s settled back on the East Coast and has developed this class to hit a variety of notes.

“We’re going to be mashing vocals and vocal stuff and performance,” Halpin said.

The first hour will be dedicated to vocal technique and the importance of keeping your voice healthy including what things to do and not do to. Students will learn important warm ups and breathing techniques.

During the next hour, two or three students will perform a song and then the class will discuss it as a group.

“I really like interactive things. This part will be very interactive and hopefully everyone feels comfortable and in a safe space to help each other out in a positive way,” Halpin said. “Taking criticism and trying to make yourself better can be hard, but if these kids want to do this with their lives you have to take some sort of criticism — even if it’s positive.”

Halpin will lend her knowledge not just from studying music but also from performing, auditioning and navigating the music industry as a performer and songwriter. Her goal is to keep the classes small so that students can develop their own style.

Check out CORii’s youtube channel and visit www.moorestownrec.com for full details and to sign up for this wonderful class.