Priya Shah

Toronto Vocal & Singing Teacher

Priya ShahABC Academy of Music2018-11-12T12:46:56+00:00

Project Description

B.Mus (Carleton)
Master of Music Therapy (Laurier)

Priya Shah is a Calgary-born and Toronto-based vocalist, instrumentalist, improviser, music therapist, and contemporary composer. In Calgary, she sang in the Mount Royal Children’s Choir and had the opportunity to perform with Amy Grant and at various festivals across the city. She joined a vocal jazz group in high-school and soon developed a love for scatting and improvisation.

Holding a Bachelor of Music with Honors in Vocal Performance from Carleton University, and a Master of Music Therapy from Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Priya has combined her love of performance with engaging in music with people of all ages and abilities. Since moving to Ontario, Priya has performed in bands and as a solo singer-songwriter and vocalist/improviser in Christine Duncan’s ‘Element Choir’ (Ottawa Chamber Music Festival), Kultrun World Music Festival (Waterloo), and Between the Ears Festival of Music and Sound (Kitchener-Waterloo). Priya is a member of two new music groups ‘On the Spot Collective’ and ‘Thelectric Breeze,’ the latter of which received a grant from the City of Ottawa to create an interactive outdoor concert leading up the Canada 150 Celebrations. Priya is an organizer of the Waterloo Region Contemporary Music Sessions, a festival for emerging and early career composers, performers, and improvisers.

Priya uses a person-centered approach to teaching. She believes in teaching the fundamentals of singing and focusing on proper technique while striving to identify and build on students strengths. Priya teaches a variety of styles including jazz, pop, rock, folk, soul, RnB, and musical theatre. In addition to voice, she plays the piano, guitar, ukulele, and accordion.

When Priya is not teaching, she works as a music therapist, performer, festival organizer, contemporary composer, and yoga instructor. She continues to write and compose original music. Priya is currently working on an EP to be released in late 2018.

Get to know Priya…Beyond the Bio!

Hobbies: Reading, going on adventures in the woods, and spending time with friends and family

Musical influences: Bjork, Sade, Michael Jackson, Portishead, and everything I hear around me!

Favourite food: Chocolate

Least favourite food: N/A

Favourite music: Mood-dependent, or Disney J

Favourite song: “Vienna” by Billy Joel, “Thank you for the music” by ABBA

Favourite movie: Alice in Wonderland

Favouirite movie music: Harry Potter

Favourite musical theatre/opera: Thoroughly Modern Millie

Best quote from your teacher: “imagine who you are singing to”

Favourite quote: “It’s not the note you play that’s the wrong note – it’s the note you play afterwards that makes it right or wrong.” – Miles Davis

Favourite book: Selected Short Stories by Mulk Raj Anand

Best thing about teaching at ABC: Getting to share my passion for singing!

Latest Homework from Priya

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Dec 12-19

Mtabisi
Practice “Silent Night”, as much as you can remember! The first part (silent night, holy night) is: fourth string (open), fourth string second fret, fourth string (open), and fifth string second fret.
Also practice the two chords: A major, and E major.
Have a great holiday and I’ll see you back on January 9th!

Ezra
Practice “Carol of the Bells”. Focus on the first page, and if you have time, try the second page, hands separately. Have a wonderful holiday and I’ll see you on January 9th!

Samara
Practice singing “When I was your man” along with the recording. Also practice playing the chords while singing. We will go through it again at next week’s make-up lesson, and we’ll look at “Fight Song.” It’s really coming together! :)

Melody
Practice playing “Impossible” along with the Youtube video (0.5 speed). You did a great job learning the first two verses! We will continue working on it when I see you again on January 9th! We will also choose 1 more piece to start working on for the recital in May.

Kevin
Practice “Let It Snow” hands together; break it up bar by bar, and repeat each bar several times before moving putting them together. Also continue practicing all the scales, hands together, 1 octave.
Have a wonderful holiday and I’ll see you on January 9th!

Carol
Continue singing “Christmas Waltz” and “Blue Skies” over the holidays. Listen to the Doris Day version of “Blue Skies” and try to imitate her improvising (when she changes the melody). Do warm-ups often to keep your voice in good shape. Have a lovely holiday and I’ll see you on January 3rd!

December 13th, 2018|

Nov 5-12

Mtabisi
Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 min every other day
What to practice: A major and E major chords
How to practice it most effectively: watch the videos of yourself playing the chords
Listen to “We are the world” and see if you can play the chords back and forth throughout

Ezra
Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 min every other day
What to practice: “Windmill” – we are almost done!
How to practice it most effectively: practice measures 9-12 at half-speed first before playing the whole song – hands together :)

Melody
Recommended minutes to practice: practice 10-15 min every other day
What to practice: C major scale & “Impossible”
How to practice it most effectively: watch the video on Youtube – practice the first verse for now (what we covered in class)

Kevin
Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 min every other day
What to practice: “Let it Snow” RH only
How to practice it most effectively: practice slowly, if you come across a difficult part, practice only that measure (or the two measures) over and over again until it feels more comfortable

Carol
Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 min every other day
What to practice: “Christmas Waltz” (focus on phrasing and deep breaths)
“Blue Skies” – listen to a few different versions and note which one you like best and why, also listen for different scatting styles

Daniela
Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 min every other day
What to practice: the Billie Eilish song we started
How to practice it most effectively: practice the chorus – high notes and lots of breath support to reach them!

Next week (our last week before the holidays, unless you have scheduled a make-up lesson), we will create concrete and realistic goals to set over the holidays.

Great work!

December 6th, 2018|
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Dec 13-20

Natalia
Continue singing “Santa Tell Me” over the holidays – try to record yourself while singing along with the karaoke track on YouTube. Work on the pronunciation of certain words in Verses 2 & 3. Also work on the build-up in the bridge, singing strong with lots of breath support.
Try to do warm-ups often (every other day) to keep your voice in good condition.
Have a lovely holiday and I’ll see you back on January 3rd!

Daksh
Practice note identification. You can color in the rest of the notes on the sheet I gave you :) We will continue singing Christmas songs and improvising next week in our makeup lesson. I will give you some more worksheets to take home with you over the holidays. It was so nice to see you smiling while you were playing today!

Harlowe
Practice singing “D.R.E.A.M”: work on the fast parts of the chorus. Also work on the “oooh” in the chorus. Listen to “Love Story” by Taylor Swift to get used to how she bends her words and creates different phrases. We will keep practicing both songs in our makeup lesson next week and do some more warm-ups. Wonderful singing!

Daniela
Practice “Bored” by Billie Eilish – focus on the verses. Although the verses are quick, try to pronounce each word clearly. Also, work on the outro! Listen to the recording several times and imitate what you hear. It is sounding really beautiful! We will sing through all 3 Billie Eilish songs next week in our makeup lesson.

Mark
Practice your scales (C major, G major) with broken and solid chords. Practice “Silent Night” (new version) and “Fur Elise” both pages, hands separately. If you have time, try hands together for page 1. We will continue working on both next week in our makeup lesson. You are making great progress, keep it up!

December 13th, 2018|

Dec 6-13

Natalia
Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 min every other day
What to practice: “Santa Tell Me”
How to practice it most effectively: listen to the recording – practice the pronunciation of certain words/phrases we identified today in the verses – say each phrase/word out loud slowly and then sing it

Daksh
Recommended minutes to practice: 5-1o min every other day
What to practice: improvising only on the black keys and then only on the white keys
Next week we will continue working on Jingle Bells :) – You can put stickers on keys if you want. I will give you a sheet next week to make it more clear!

Harlowe
Recommended minutes to practice: 5-10 min every other day
What to practice: practice warm-ups (meow, brr)
practice: “It’s only getting better” & listen to “The Climb” by Miley Cyrus and “Love Story” by Taylor Swift
How to practice it most effectively: sing along with the recordings

December 6th, 2018|
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Preferred Books for Priya Students

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Vocal Books

The Contemporary Singer

The Contemporary Singer

This comprehensive guide based on the curriculum of the Voice Department at Berklee College of Music is a must-have for every vocalist! Covers all the essentials, including: an overview of the singing process, treating voice as an instrument, tips for getting started and overcoming stage fright, proper posture and breathing, tone, discovering resonance, belting, diction, maintaining vocal health, mic techniques, and exercises for all voice ranges and types on the accompanying CD. Includes lead sheets for such standard vocal repertoire pieces as: Yesterday – I’m Beginning to See the Light – and I Heard it Through the Grapevine.

Buy on Amazon

Vocal Workouts

Vocal Workouts for the Contemporary Singer

The vocal workouts in this much-anticipated follow-up to Peckham’s bestselling The Contemporary Singer are based on Berklee College of Music’s highly effective vocal method. This volume will help vocalists develop the voice through good vocal health, warm-up exercises, advanced techniques, stage performance advice and more. Also includes sing-along tracks to support your workout. Audio is accessed online for download or streaming and contains PLAYBACK+, a multi-functional audio player that allows you to slow down audio without changing pitch, set loop points, change keys, and pan left or right.

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Piano Books

Faber & Faber Piano Adventures

Lesson Book Primer Level

Cover of Faber Piano Adventures Lesson Book Primer Level

The 2nd Edition Primer Lesson Book introduces the keyboard, note values, and the grand staff. Students play in C 5-finger scale patterns, develop recognition of steps and skips, and learn letter names independent of finger number. Musicianship is built through the use of dynamics and coloristic experimentation with the pedal. The book is organized into units which represent the major concepts and skills. As new units are introduced, earlier concepts and skills are constantly reviewed.

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Faber & Faber Piano Adventures

Popular Repertoire Book Primer Level

Cover of Faber Piano Adventures Popular Repertoire Book Primer Level

Contents include: Catch a Falling Star * Happy Birthday to You * I Got Rhythm * I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing * Lean on Me * The Lion Sleeps Tonight * The Planets, from Animaniacs * The Rose * and Star Wars (Main Theme).

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Faber & Faber Pre-Time Popular

Cover of Faber Pre-Time Popular Piano

Arrangements of popular songs that beginning players will love to learn, including: The Candy Man * I Just Can’t Wait to Be King * If I Only Had a Brain * Scooby Doo Main Title * and more.

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First 50 Classical Pieces

Cover of First 50 Classical Pieces for Piano

A great collection of must-know classics for all pianists. Each arrangement is simple and streamlined, yet still captures the essence of the music.

Buy on Amazon

Faber Piano Adventures

Lesson Book 1

Cover of Faber Piano Adventures Lesson Book 1

The 2nd Edition Level 1 Lesson Book introduces all the notes of the grand staff, elementary chord playing, and the concept of tonic and dominant notes. Students play in varied positions, reinforcing reading skills and recognizing intervals through the 5th. Musicianship is built with the introduction of legato and staccato touches. This level continues the interval orientation to reading across the full range of the Grand Staff. The 5-finger approach is presented here in a fresh, musically appealing way.

Buy on Amazon

Faber & Faber Piano Adventures

Theory Book Level 1

Cover of Piano Adventures Theory Book Level 1

The 2nd Edition Theory Book provides instruction, reinforcement, and creative applications of basic theory concepts. Students will enjoy note-naming with StoryRhymes, explore improvisation, and engage with eye-training and ear-training activities all within a fun-filled context tied thematically to the Level 1 Lesson Book pieces.

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Faber & Faber Piano Adventures

Lesson Book Level 2A

Cover of Faber Piano Adventures Lesson Book 2A

The 2nd Edition Level 2A Lesson Book follows Piano Adventures Level 1. The book opens with a Note Reading Guide and an introduction to eighth note rhythm patterns. Students work with 5-finger transposition, functional harmony, and musical phrases. Exploration of C, G, D and A major and minor 5-finger positions builds on intervallic reading skills that were introduced in the earlier level. Appealing repertoire reinforces key concepts and encourages students to explore musical expression through varied dynamics and tempos. Selections include well-known classics from the great composers and original compositions.

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Faber & Faber Piano Adventures

Theory Book Level 2A

Cover of Faber & Faber Piano Adventures Theory Book Level 2A

The 2nd Edition Level 2A Theory Book has thematic tie-in with the Level 2A Lesson Book, inviting students into the pages for deeper understanding. A wide variety of theory activities engage students with eighth notes, phrases, transposition, and 5-finger scales. Composer biographies provide valuable context for Lesson Book pieces while helping students review key concepts.

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Faber & Faber Piano Adventures

Performance Book Level 2A

Cover of Faber & Faber Performance Book Level 2A

The 2nd Edition Level 2A Performance Book offers an array of colorful elementary pieces that reinforce the concepts presented in the Lesson Book. The selections range from arrangements of classical compositions to American folk songs and imaginative originals. Students and teachers will enjoy the wide variety of sounds and musical textures in this collection.

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Faber & Faber Piano Adventures

Lesson Book Level 2B

Cover of Faber Piano Adventures Lesson Book 2B

The 2nd Edition Level 2B Lesson Book offers a systematic approach to scales, primary chords (I, IV, V7), and transposition for the keys of C, G, and F major. This new edition features nine new songs, plus enhanced arrangements of favorite pieces from the first edition. The new “Scale and Chord Adventures” appendix offers teachers the flexibility to explore major and minor scale and chord patterns in all twelve keys.

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‘Our Choice’ Lessons & Classes in January 2019

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