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Average cost of voice and acting lessons???

kimokikimoki Posts: 148Registered User Junior Member
edited January 2008 in Musical Theater Major
I was curious about the cost of lessons. My D is very happy with both of her coaches (voice & monologue) but I feel they are on the high side. I was just wondering what most other folks are paying. For an 1 hr of voice and 1 1/2 of acting we pay $100 each. Is that the norm? I probably won't change either way because I like them and so does my D but I am curious. I realize it may depend on the city but we are not in NY.
Post edited by kimoki on
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Replies to: Average cost of voice and acting lessons???

  • happycollegemomhappycollegemom Posts: 1,170Registered User Senior Member
    i think this really depends on where you are and the credentials of the teacher. $100 may be a little steep for 1 hr, but as i said it depends on the coach. and if you're satisfied, that's all that counts. i know nothing about cost of acting lessons.
  • kimokikimoki Posts: 148Registered User Junior Member
    Usually when other parents ask and I tell them they sorta look at me like I'm crazy. So I guess I just wanted to know if I am.
  • MusThCCMusThCC Posts: 586Registered User Member
    Like real estate , it's all about location. Those are very high, if not top quality, top credentialed folks, and if not in NYC. On the other hand, sometimes tiny locations also incur more expense, because there may not be any competition.
  • happycollegemomhappycollegemom Posts: 1,170Registered User Senior Member
    if you are both happy and you can pay for the lessons, you're set! crazy is in the eye of the beholder!!! ;)
  • soozievtsoozievt Posts: 28,788Registered User, ! Senior Member
    I think this will truly vary per location and also the level of the coach/teacher in terms of their experience, etc.

    For what it is worth...
    A few years ago, when my D was in high school, here in Vermont, her voice teacher prefered not to typically give private lessons but to teach in very small groups for 90 minute lessons (though each person got to work individually during part of the lesson on their own songs). The group lesson was $30. In senior year, you could take privates (several were prepping for college auditions) and these were for 60 minutes and cost $60.

    Where I live, we don't have acting classes or lessons but for senior year, i was able to get an acting coach for audition prep. Again, the lessons were private for 60 minutes and again cost $60.

    We also had to travel 50 miles each way to these lessons!

    Both teachers/coaches are on the faculty of a theater school in NYC and split their time in NYC with their homes in VT. I know their rates were higher in NYC but would not fly here in VT where people tend to earn much less money. The voice teacher has a doctorate and is well regarded in the field with clients on Bdway and so on.

    I believe my D's private voice teacher in NYC costs $60 but it is not an hour like it was here. I forget if it is 30 or 45 minutes (I am blanking on that).
  • alwaysamomalwaysamom Posts: 8,997Registered User Senior Member
    kimoki, those prices seem very high. I don't believe that my D ever paid that much for private voice lessons in NYC from two different teachers, with top credentials, who both instruct many professionals in the theatre community there. Are you satisfied that these individuals are, as MusThCC described, top quality and top credentialed? If so, and if there are no other options, then I guess you can be satisfied. :)
  • hushinfazenhushinfazen Posts: 97Registered User Junior Member
    Here in Los Angeles private voice lessons can range from 100.00-200.00 an hour.
  • tiffwtiffw Posts: 105Registered User Junior Member
    Let me reassure you that you're not paying as much as some of us for voice lessons. I don't even dare tell anyone what we pay, or they'd probably try and have us committed. We travel 2 hours each way twice a month to my daughter's voice lessons, and on top of that, we pay a good bit more than you're paying for a one hour lesson. However, we feel like we're getting what we pay for.

    As with EVERYTHING, there are a zillion different factors that play into a decision such as this one (how much you're willing to pay for lessons). I can tell you a few things that have gone into OUR decision to make this kind of commitment.

    First: What is the student's natural ability? That's sometimes hard for a parent to know on their own. However, in our case, if one of my other children were looking for voice lessons, I would NEVER pay the amount we're paying, or even be willing to drive farther than 5 miles to take them to lessons:). That's because although my other children have nice voices, they don't have the same level of natural ability that my daughter has. It would probably be a poor use of time and money to put those same resources into a child who could not reap the same amount of benefit from the investment.

    Second: What are your options? In our smaller town, there are a variety of voice teachers that don't necessarily have the best reputation for knowing what they're doing. We've heard too many horror stories about students whose voices have been ruined by a poor teacher. We'd rather travel the distance in order to have a quality teacher.

    Third: Do you consider the lessons a serious investment into your child's future? Or is taking voice lessons something they want to do for enjoyment, or simply to improve their ability to participate in musical theater as a hobby? In our case, we've known since our daughter was about 12 that she was serious about pursuing musical theater long-term. We started her in voice lessons at that time with a very good teacher who charged about $50 an hour -- we thought we were crazy at the time, but it turned out to be a great investment. Since then, she's had master classes with a lot of very reputable teachers, all of whom have encouraged her to pursue the best voice training we can afford or find. Two years ago we made the decision to have her start taking lessons from the teacher she has now, and as crazy as the investment seems, that exactly how we see it -- as an investment in to her future.

    Fourth: Can the student potentially earn a living based on their training? For example, under the instruction of her current teacher, our daughter is also in the process of becoming a certified vocal instructor within the method/network of voice training she is in. It's quite a rigorous program she's participating in in order to be considered "certified" within the network of teachers. It's a process that takes a couple of years to get through. However, once she's certified, she will be able to earn far more teaching voice lessons than she could ever make working a "typical" job. Plus, she'll be able to do what she loves for a living, even if she never becomes a Broadway star!

    There are no guarantees that she'll make it in the MT business, but we certainly hope that the training we're investing in will put her in the best possible position for a) college scholarships, and b) a long-term career teaching voice lessons. If either of those results were to happen, we'd feel great about the investment we made!
  • kimokikimoki Posts: 148Registered User Junior Member
    Wow... I don't really feel too bad now. I am so glad I put this out there and got the responses I did. I will fill you in a little more. We are outside Philly not NY but a "big" city. Both of the teachers have taught or are teaching in college and both have a very good resume of their own in acting (movies, theater) & musical theater. They also have students on and off Broadway right now. The acting coach we hired just this past year for monologues. The voice coach the same and he has really helped her with her range. I am not sure of the lingo since I am not musical but she was always an Alto in choir and now she is singing "Mr Snow" (same key as Audra McDonald) for her auditions. I think her voice teachers before were probably not so great before.

    Oh and she is getting acceptances so I guess it's all good!!

    Thanks so much for the quick responses.
  • TomBFACoachTomBFACoach Posts: 80- Junior Member
    100 dollars is quite high.
  • MichaelNKatMichaelNKat Posts: 2,426Registered User Senior Member
    kimoki, since our girls went to H.S together, I'll take advantage of my "insider's" knowledge in responding. For our area, the rates are about 30% higher than what we paid for our daughter last year. We paid $50/hour for her acting coach and $40/half hour (which always stretched to 45 minutes) for her voice coach. Both were well credentialed and currently working pros. However, we also paid as much as you for a voice teacher (as opposed to a vocal coach) who worked with our daughter purely on technique. If the coaches you are using are the same individuals T used last spring when our daughters did Guys and Dolls together, it's clearly been money well spent. T was smokin' as Adelaide. In any event, it's only 4 more months until H.S. ends and she takes the summer off to decompress before she becomes immersed in a BFA program in September. What's a little more money at this point ;) .
  • NotMamaRoseNotMamaRose Posts: 4,090Registered User Senior Member
    Wow, my D's voice teacher (she is a Juilliard graduate who sang at the Met and used to head up the prep division of a prestigious music conservatory) charges $60 an hour for a private lesson. I feel lucky now!
  • JIJaneJIJane Posts: 198Registered User Junior Member
    In London you pay £50 or £60 for an hours decent singing lesson. For the top teachers you pay more (around £80-£100 is the norm for "named" teachers), some charging up to £150 a lesson. Not that I agree with that. Acting coaches usually charge between £30 and £50 per hour, depending on who they are.
  • MusThCCMusThCC Posts: 586Registered User Member
    Bottom line - if you can afford it, and are happy with the training and the results, I would continue on with what you have. Voice lessons you probably want to continue even after the audition process is done - if it's song coaching, not necessarily. Acting, if it's specifically monologue coaching, I see no need to continue past audition season.

    In my area, there are 2 top people I know and would recommend - one charges $20/half hour. The other charges $50 /half hour. Both are eminently qualified by virtue of training and performance careers. I know other people charging anywhere from 13-40/half hour, some of whom I would not recommend, and some of whom I would actually discourage people from using. There are of course exceptions, but I would be leery of anyone who teaches several things - I know a person who does piano, voice, flute, and violin. Jack of all trades - master of none.

    For those reading who cannot afford the high rates, be assured that you can find teachers out there who are more affordable. Also, I wouldn't necessarily try this at the start, but after you've worked with the teacher a while, and there is a connection, and they know whether you're really applying yourself, is there some bartering or work/study opportunity? If they own a physical studio, get a discount for manning the front desk? If they teach in their home - some light housework or babysitting services?
  • cartera45cartera45 Posts: 12,091Registered User Senior Member
    My D's voice teacher is $65 an hour and has been stretching that to 75-90 minutes for audition season. My D does have a bit of a drive to get to her and she teaches out of her home. My D's piano/ear training teacher WAS $100 an hour. She is switching teachers because of that.
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