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  • Neal Harrelson - Voice and Singing Coach
  • Neal Harrelson - Voice and Singing Coach
  • Neal Harrelson - Voice and Singing Coach
Find the Voice You Never Knew You Had
Using my extensive vocal training in the Swedish-Italian School, I empower students with exemplary vocal technique, enabling them to discover their voice, maintain their unique sound and realize their goals. Important elements include instilling healthy vocal habits, a working knowledge of the instrument, inspiring confidence, and instruction in interpretive and musical skills. Central to my approach is always fostering a professional, caring and trusting atmosphere and a free exchange of ideas, concepts and information. Through this collaboration, my students acquire lifelong learning skills and problem solving strategies.



Education & Training
  • Pittsburgh Opera Center: Young Artist Program with the Pittsburgh Opera Company
  • Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music: Artist Diploma, Opera Performance
  • University of Tennessee: Master of Music
  • Shorter College: Bachelor of Music
Awards & Honors
  • Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions – Regional Finalist
  • Florida NATS – Young Artist
  • Pittsburgh Opera Center – Tito Capobianco Scholarship Award
  • Shoshanna Foundation – Scholarship Award
  • Frederick Shorr Voice Competition
  • Georgia Music Teachers Association
  • National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS)
  • American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA)

Teaching Experience

2013 – present Adjunct Faculty, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA
(Private voice lessons for music and non-music majors)
2012 – present Adjunct Faculty, Long Island University, Brookville, NY
(Private voice lessons for music and non-music majors)
2011 – present Vocal Consultant – developing vocal technique and musical coaching for leading role singers/actors
(Broadway Musicals: GHOST and MATILDA)
2009 – present Adjunct Faculty, City College, New York, NY
(Private voice lessons for music majors and non-majors)
2002 – present Private studio in New York City working with beginners through professionals in opera, pop and music theatre genres
2009 – 2011 Adjunct Faculty, Monmouth University, Long Branch, NJ
(Private voice lessons for music majors and non-majors)
2002 – 2003 Adjunct Faculty, Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT
(Private voice lessons)
1989 – 1990 Adjunct Faculty, Knoxville College, Knoxville, TN
(Private voice lessons, music appreciation)
1989 – 1990 Adjunct Faculty, Roane State Community College, Roane County, TN
(Private voice lessons)
1987 – 1989 Teaching Assistant, University of Tennessee at Knoxville, Knoxville, TN
(Private voice lessons)

Opera Performance

Opera Orchestra of New York Lucrezia Borgia
Maria Sturada
La Favorita
New York City National Opera La Boheme Rodolfo
Sarasota Opera La Jollie fille de Perth Henri Smith
Virginia Opera Lucia di Lammermoor
Cosi fan Tutte
The Tender Land
Mississippi Opera Tosca
Lucia di Lammermoor
Die Fledermaus
La Traviata
San Antonio Opera Rigoletto Duca Mantua
Sacramento Opera Les Contes d’Hoffmann Hoffmann
Opera Santa Barbara Faust Faust
Mobile Opera La Traviata
The Tender Land
Duca Mantua
Tulsa Opera Dream Keepers
Madama Butterfly
Opera Arizona Eugene Onegin Lensky
Camarmoor Festival Lucrezia Borgia
Elisir d’Amore
New Jersey Opera Festival Six Characters in Search of an Author Director
Cleveland Opera The Merry Widow Camille
Knoxville Opera La Boheme
Le Nozze di Figaro
Greenville Opera Lucia di Lammermoor Edgardo
Anchorage Opera Cosi fan Tutte Ferrando
Opera Arkansas La Traviata
Pirates of Penzance
Holland Park Opera (UK) Il Barbieri di Siviglia Almaviva
Opera d’Nantes (FR) i Puritani Arturo
Opera Queensland (Australia) La Traviata Alfredo
Hot Springs Music Festival Die Zauberflote Tamino
Nashville Opera Elisir d’Amore Nemorino

Symphonic Performance

Orquestra de València Rossini – Messa di gloria
Florida Philharmonic A Tribute to Mario Lanza
Orquesta Sinfónica de Radio Televisión Español Carmina Burana
Fresno Symphony (CA) La Traviata (Concert Version)
Minnesota Symphony La Donna e mobile (BMW commercial)
Stamford Symphony (CT) Christmas Concert
Little Orchestra Society of New York Rossini – Messa di gloria
Bangor Symphony (ME) Beethoven Mass in C
Billings Symphony (MT) Bach – B minor Mass
Mid-America Productions at Carnegie Hall Bach – Magnificat
National Chorale at Avery Fisher Hall Mozart – Requiem
Haydn – Lord Nelson Mass
Mozart – Coronation Mass
Carmina Burana
Beethoven 9th Symphony
Elmira Symphony (NY) Haydn – Creation
New Jersey Oratorio Society Opera Gala
Schubert Mass in Eflat
G&S – Trial by Jury- Defendant
Mozart – Missa brevis in d
Plymouth Philharmonic Orchestra (MA) Beethoven 9th Symphony

Vocal Coaching Studio

Teaching comes naturally to me. I enjoy teaching as much as I do singing. My students range in diversity from Broadway musical singers, cabaret, rock, and folk singers, cantors, and opera singers.

Private Instruction

I offer private one-on-one lessons in my home in the heart of Manhattan’s East Village or at several studio locations in Midtown West. For students outside the New York metropolitan area, we can arrange individual lessons using Skype or similar web-based platforms. I ask students to respect my 24-hour cancellation policy.

Performance Workshops

I hold periodic master classes that are typically two hours long with limited enrollment. My next Master Class is on February 22, 2014. The class is open to all folks and all genres. The cost of the class is $60 per person. If you would like to participate please contact me at neal.harrelson@gmail. Or just come and observe and learn by watching others. It’s going to be a blast. Seating is limited so please contact me ASAP to secure your space!
Location is 853 7th Ave btw 54th & 55th Streets from 2:00 – 5:00pm.

Private Instruction

  • - No Image Defined -

    One on One

    I offer private one-on-one lessons in my home in the heart of Manhattan’s East Village or at several studio locations in Midtown West. I my students to respect my 24-hour cancellation policy.


Rosanne Cash

Singer / Songwriter

Neal helped me ground my voice fully in the body and give it wings. I respect him deeply, and feel fortunate to work with a world-class vocal mentor.

Todd Susman

Stage, Screen & Television Actor

Neal Harrelson puts his teaching where his art is. That’s to say he’s a working artist, superb in both skill and accomplishment. He’s knows exactly what he’s doing and exactly how to explain it. He’s a straight shooter who demystifies the mystical transaction between body and song. If you want to perfect the song in your body, nobody’s better than Neal.

David Jones

World Renowned Master Voice Teacher

Neal Harrelson has studied the Swedish-Italian school for several years and has gained a good understanding of the principles and how they assist in voice structuring. His understanding of technique is quite extensive and that, in addition to his vast performing experience, makes him a special teacher.

Dorothy Bishop

Soprano, Broadway National Tour, Master Class

Neal is just a natural. He can hear problems, correct tension, hear a tenor voice in a forced baritone, or fix a soprano voice with a wobble. I believe he is truly a gift to any voice student. He is kind, focused, present, funny, perseverant, patient and professional. He demands a lot but Neal will be a tremendous asset to any performer of any genre.

Allison Thomas

BFA Candidate, CCNY

Professor Harrelson is the greatest voice teacher. He saved my instrument from the risk of a ruptured vocal cord. In 2011, he noticed I was struggling to phonate. He not only recommended a doctor but also accompanied me on my visit and kept me calm the entire time. Discovering that I had vocal nodules and swollen veins on my cords, I began working with him on proper technique. Today I no longer have nodules; my range, agility and stamina have improved tremendously.

Gerard Harrington

Lyric Tenor

I started studying with Neal a few months ago. I feel very comfortable with his approach and have seen improvement in my sound. He is a very fastidious individual whom I admire, no learning bad technique here. He hears EVERYTHING!!!!!!! I’m excited to continue my learning with Neal and look forward to having a good solid technique in the not too distant future.

Jonathon Moon, ACC

Life/Career Coach

Having worked with some of the top teachers in the country, I feel incredibly blessed to have found Neal. He provides rare top-notch vocal pedagogy through his own gifted voice and amazing breadth of vocal technique – an unparalleled experience for any voice student. Neal’s thoughtful guidance creates a safe space to assist singers in finding their unique voice, building upon it to create the art of singing from a truly authentic place that combines solid technique with sheer artistry. What a contribution Neal makes to the vocal community not only in New York City but around the world.

Alessandro Simone

Repetitor, OperaOggiNY

Neal has a honed ability to vividly guide students through the programmatic facets of their music, and a keen awareness of nuances in voice technique issues. He interacts with his students on a supportive level, inspiring them to make better decisions, both musically and professionally.

Kerry Rowe

Dramatic Soprano

Neal has an extensive knowledge voice physiology, and is able to select and create vocalizations customized for each singer. Lessons emphasize healthy singing, eliminating habits and techniques that are damaging. Neal also encourages an exchange of ideas, making the learning process rich and interactive. Neal is an experienced, knowledgeable teacher who truly cares about his students.


Posture and Breathing for Optimal Singing

An optimal singing voice requires proper posture and breathing. The posture for singing that employs the idea of standing too tall and locking the hip sockets and hyper extending the rib cage will prevent you from getting a low free breath. Maintaining the hip sockets in a locked position and/or the rib cage in a hyper-extended state will prevent access to the lower abdominal muscles essential to proper lower body support.

The correct posture for singing starts from the bottom up:

  1. Feet apart or one foot in out in front of you but space between the feet. Keep the weight of your body evenly distributed on both feet but NOT on the heels of your feet. There should be a slight leaning forward sensation.
  2. Knees should have the feeling of a slight bend and should remain loose while breathing and during phonation.
  3. The hip sockets should remain loose in the breathing and phonation processes. You can achieve this by bending a slightly forward at the hips.
  4. During inhalation keep the abdominal muscles flat, don’t squeeze them or hold them too tightly to keep them flat, but don’t allow the stomach and lower abdominal muscles to distend too much. As you ALLOW the air into the lungs imagine the air coming straight up the spinal column. You should feel the breath is filling up the back. Work to expand from the bottom up and as you fill with air allow the rib cage to lengthen, north and south. You should feel tall but not tight.

You need only a small amount of air to enter the lungs, don’t try to fill them completely. A thumb full of air as Lamperti said. Or just the breath you use when you need to say something important.

Rosanne Cash Sings Praise

Rosanne Cash

“Neal helped me ground my voice fully in the body and give it wings. I respect him deeply, and feel fortunate to work with a world-class vocal mentor.”

Rosanne Cash
January 27, 2014

Opening Night Gala for “Ghost the Musical”

Neal Harrelson at Ghost the Musical

Neal Harrelson worked extensively as the voice consultant for the Broadway cast of “Ghost the Musical”. (Pictured with Yocasta Lachapelle)

United Nations Youth Assembly

Neal Harrelson-Jesse Jackson-United-Nations

Following the Reverend Jesse Jackson’s address at the United Nations, Tenor Neal Harrelson was the featured guest soloist for the closing ceremonies.

Opera Manhattan: Genarro in Lucrezia Borgia

The New York Times

Neal Harrelson, the Gennaro, has a clarion tenor sound.

The Westsider

Most of the singing was good, with the outstanding cast member being tenor Neal Harrelson as Lucrezia’s almost- paramour Genarro: his strongly focused singing of the aria “T’amo qual s’amo un angelo” proved a real showpiece discovery in Harrelson’s peformance–he whooped up to a high E above C at its climax.

New York City Opera: Rodolfo in La Boheme

Greenville News

A more graceful, handsome Rodolfo than tenor Neal Harrelson is hardly imaginable. He possesses a light, elegant voice that nonetheless proved hardy enough for the demands of the score.

Sarasota Opera: Henri Smith in La Joli Fille de Perth

The Longboat Observer

Neal Harrelson demonstrated he has an outstanding voice and imposing stage presence. He had fine solos and touching duets with fair maid Ernest, especially in the last act.


It is the character of Henri Smith who sustains much of the music of the show, and tenor Neal Harrelson brought an easy top range and fine sense of style to the role….his high notes were clear and winning.

Greensboro Opera: A Lucia with an Air of “Expectancy”

Review by William Thomas Walker from
November 14, 2003

Neal Harrelson acted superbly and brought one of the firmest and most even tenor voices that the GOC has ever had to his dramatic portrayal of Lucia’s true lover, Edgardo.


Please don’t hesitate to contact me for more information about my work.

Phone: +1 917.974.2558

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