Kari sang in her high school’s award-winning jazz choir and then earned a Bachelor of Music in vocal performance. Her studies involved a two-year conservatory, choral work, conducting, two solo recitals, musical theatre and operetta, accompanying singers and theatre productions, and vocal coaching. For a brief time, she played the French horn in one of the school’s wind ensembles.
Kari was a member of The Blue Hill Troupe in NYC performing concerts, operettas, and musical theatre productions throughout the year. She performed in China (cabaret), England (cabaret and operetta) and NYC (musicals and regional theatre). Along the way, she studied under several Juilliard-trained professionals, including pianist Barbara Glick and vocalists Marianne Weltmann and Eileen Schauler. Kari sings and plays at church as well; this work nurtured her ability to transition from classical piano by playing off the lead sheets.
On Kari’s Stereo:
Contemporary Christian music, show tunes, classical (she enjoys Seattle Symphony season tickets). Kari is also a big Gilbert & Sullivan fan; she knows almost the entire canon having sung with a troupe in New York.
“One of my proudest accomplishments and experiences was performing in the Broadway North American tour of Evita,
directed by Tony and Drama Desk Award nominee Larry Fuller. Playing Meg in an off-off Broadway production of Brigadoon
was also a lot of fun.”
“As far as teaching, I once rearranged half a song for a child with special needs; watching her shine was priceless. I was also able to work with a number of kids in NYC and New Jersey who were considered at risk – I felt like we impacted them as human beings as well as budding musicians and singers.”
Why Kari Loves West Side Music Academy
“I love that there are all kinds of students playing all kinds of instruments! I think it's important to nurture the music that is inherent in all people and WSMA is most assuredly doing that! Also, the owners are pretty cool...”