Recording artist and San Francisco Bay Area native Lisa Andrea Torres, has been performing in the Bay Area, Miami, Brazil, Asia, and Mexico for the past 25 years, five of which were spent in Rio and São Paulo, Brazil. Expressing warmth and versatility, Lisa appears regularly at local venues, singing in English Spanish and Portuguese with many of the top Bay Area contemporary jazz and pop, Latin Jazz and Brazilian Jazz musicians. During and while living/performing in Brazil and Miami for over thirteen years, she began singing on the Asia 5-star luxury hotel circuit in Japan, Korea, China, and Thailand performing 6 nights per week on 4-month contracts.
While studying music at San Francisco State University and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Lisa began developing her vocal skills performing early on with some of the most talented and creative jazz trios and quartets in the Bay Area under the guidance of premiere jazz pianist Merrill Hoover. As arranger and accompanist to vocalists such as Anita O’Day, Ernestine Anderson, and Chris Connor, Merrill became Lisa’s first vocal coach and mentor enabling her to build a solid repertoire while instilling the essential qualities to both sensitively and dynamically interpret each song as though telling a story.
Lisa uses these basic concepts of vocal coaching in her lessons, for the beginning student to become more familiar with his/her own voice, and the continuing student to further explore and refine their instrument. From a performance aspect, these practices along with a daily exercise program of vowel-based vocal exercises to improve a vocalist’s sense of rhythm, intonation, projection, and delivery are incorporated into an individual program designed to develop and better each student’s musicianship. Ear-training exercises, scales, recognition of intervals and most importantly pitch control incorporating the use of a keyboard as reference, is also used in class as well as recommended for students’ while practicing at home. Depending on the age and musical training of the student, she also offers a combination of piano, vocal technique practice, and vocal coaching to students who wish to improve their all around vocal performance skills.
LISA ANDREA TORRES
’93-’95 – San Francisco State University. Received Bachelor’s degree in music program – Music Literacy, Performance, Creation, Critical Historic & Cultural Understanding, and Communication & Teaching.
‘92-93 – Laney College in Oakland CA. Matriculated through music program, with intensive course in ear training, (ability to sing ascending/descending: modes, intervals, chords up from root to third, fifth and seventh; diatonic, half-tone, whole-tone, diatonic, harmonic, melodic and natural minor scales), rhythmic dictation and notation, transcription, and piano classes.
’92 – San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Adult Extension Program. Courses taken included private piano and solfege. (mixed and moveable DO)
’91-’92 – College of Marin, Kentfield, CA. Completed 2-year music program in piano, choir, theory, ear-training, rhythmic dictation/notation, harmonic analysis using figured bass. Performance classes included Chamber Choir, Vocal Jazz Ensemble, with school performances and in local music festivals.
*Won scholarship through the Vocal Jazz Choir to participate in the Phil Mattson/Gene Purling summer workshop for jazz vocalists. Workshop consisted of intensive courses in music theory and harmony, six and eight-part vocal harmony, as well as soloing and vocal improvisation.
As a Vocal Instructor, I have studied and privately taught various techniques for the development of vocal range, blend, intonation, breath support and placement, as well as correcting student’s individual problems such as pitch distinction with the utilization of ear-training practices incorporating Speech Level Voice method by renowned celebrity vocal instructor, Seth Riggs. As a Vocal Coach, drawing from 20+ years of experience both locally and abroad, I help students’ to focus on confidence while performing, stage presence, mic technique, presentation and communication with the audience.
As a piano instructor, with beginner to intermediate piano instruction we focus on fingering and basic theory and practice, working through major, minor, chromatic, diminished scales, Circle of Fifths, etc.
For aspiring singer/songwriters, I teach also teach a hybrid course combining vocal practice and piano accompaniment along with additional ear training practice and vocal/piano unison exercises.
I have been working full-time as a vocalist and musician for approximately twenty years performing many different styles of music locally and abroad. *(see performance bio)
My professional teaching skills also include a TEFL certificate (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) with an emphasis on pronunciation and intonation of vowel combinations, incorporating techniques, which have been helpful for non-native English speakers.