Hello and welcome to my site! It’s my pleasure to tell you a little about myself. I’m Crystal J. Leotaud.
I am a singing professional with 20 years of experience as a singer, coach and choir director. I began my studies at a very young age with the Dickerson Performing Arts Center in Long Island, New York, where I honed my skills with the Long Island Musical Theatre Ensemble. I also fell in love with ballet, tap and modern dance and I used some of these techniques to develop my craft. I began studying voice seriously with Soprano, Jeanne Faulkner and Baritone, Emory Taylor. With their help I began winning many talent contests and participated in NYSSMA’s All-County, All-State and All-Eastern Choirs. I also participated in the very prestigious ACDA All-Eastern choir with the famed choral director Paul Salamunovich.
A singer starts by having his instrument as a gift from God… When you have been given something in a moment of grace, it is sacrilegious to be greedy. – Marian Anderson, Contralto
Before graduating from high school I still kept up my dancing and began intense study in the at the Dance Theatre of Harlem and directly after studied at the famed Tanglewood Institute in Lenox, MA with Soprano, Joan Heller and took master classes with Musician/ Composer, Bobby McFerrin. Subsequently, I started the conservatory setting at Boston University’s School for the Arts. While in Boston I did contract studio work for various R&B artists, performed in local theater and sang with the Boston Pops Choir featuring Patti Labelle, Edwin Hawkins and Charles Floyd. On returning to the NYC area I began singing with the Bronx Opera Company while freelancing under the mentorship of Mezzo-Soprano, Claudia Catania. In 1999, I began my music pedagogy career with New York City’s Department of Education. I have served as a teacher and a Staff Developer who was assigned to assist new music teachers. At this time I am the Performing Arts/ Chorus teacher at a K-8 school in Queens, New York, teaching voice, strings and performing arts.
Currently I am a teacher, recitalist and freelance artist who spends most of my time teaching her students to find their “voice”.