BtS is a unique approach to singing, based on how the human body makes intense sound. In addition to reinforcing the techniques taught in private lessons, participants hone their performance skills and team up with a collaborative pianist.

Workshop participation is limited to singers currently enrolled in regular lessons and returning students. Enrollment is limited to no more than five singers.


Into to BtS Workshops are offered semi-annually. Dr. Holland explains the foundations of the technique and guides each participant along a path of development and understanding. Breathing and moving the air in a natural way - the way in which we are built - forms the strong foundation necessary to craft a compelling performance. You will learn from observing others in additional to putting the work into motion in your choice of repertoire. To be added to the intro workshop waiting list, click here.



Q: Why Built to Sing?
A: The world of opera and solo singing is highly competitive. To craft a compelling performance, the singer’s technical foundation must be solid. Decision time when you’re on stage is infinitesimal. Build a foundation based on your body’s natural abilities to make and sustain intense sound, then you can craft compelling and spontaneous performances using your fabulous musicianship and interpretive skills.

Q: What is your teaching approach?
A: I am moved by beautiful singing. My search for understanding how to achieve it led me to soprano Delia Surratt, who is teaching me to sing at a level I only dreamed of. As I continue to evolve my singing and performing skills, I share my inspiration with others. The results are amazing! We are using our bodies as wind instruments, making naturally intense sound that is so beautiful and expressive and uniquely our own.

Q: I’m a professional singer. How can I benefit from this approach?
A: To be competitive in the professional singing world, the sound production must be beautiful, expressive, and freely projected throughout the vocal range. The audience doesn’t want to perceive any work or struggle in the vocal production, and the acting must be authentic. I continually see how this approach allows serious, competitive singers to reach their highest potential. Don’t let unnecessary tensions hold you back!

Q: Is this workshop for professional singers only?
A: No! Singers of all experience levels can benefit from the workshop sessions. The most important prerequisite is the desire to sing, the willingness to try a new approach, and the openness to learn from example.

Q: What should I bring to the workshops?
A: Bring sheet music for the songs/arias you would like to work on - three copies (one for yourself, Dr. Holland, and our collaborative pianist). You should also bring a recording device to record your work (nothing fancy - a smart phone will suffice).

Q: Can I learn the technique just by observation and then teach it to others?
A: No, not at all. Anyone can learn this approach to singing but it must be personally developed by the singing teacher before it can be authentically taught to others. Many hours of precise practice go into this approach to singing.

Q: Can I learn the technique quickly and master it after one workshop?
A: When first explained, it often makes a great deal of sense to the singer. The singer may be relieved to use the body as the wind instrument that truly it is! For a singer with a more established technique, this approach may be challenging at first, as established tensions are sometime hard to release. For both the developing singer and the professional performer, this approach to singing will be an evolution over time but you will experience the results of the approach very quickly.


I was amazed by how much ease in singing I gained! Dr. Holland inspired me with her strongly held belief that we are all “built to sing”, and provided clear explanations and demonstrations to help me improve.
— Built to Sing participant
At choir rehearsal the day after the first workshop, a friend standing next to me asked if I had been taking vocal lessons because I was projecting so much better! Months later, my understanding of what I learned in this workshop is sinking in more and more, making singing more of a joy. Sign me up for the next session!
— Liz M.
Dr. Holland with vocal student Bess Cohen

Dr. Holland with vocal student Bess Cohen