Ann Baltz is Founder and Artistic Director of the nationally acclaimed performance training program OperaWorks, and has been recognized as one of the leading opera educators in America today. Recent engagements include faculty training for the New England Conservatory of Music on Integrating Arts Curricula; improvisation workshops for the 2008 national conventions of NATS and the National Opera Association; and opera improvisation concerts in San Francisco and New York City. Ms. Baltz has served as closing speaker at the NATS 2006 National Convention in Minneapolis, is a frequent presenter at Classical Singer’s National Conventions, and a panelist for OPERA America's National Singer Conferences. Also for OPERA America she serves on the steering committee for the National Singer Training Forum with directors of Young Artist Programs and conservatories.
Ms. Baltz conducts master classes, workshops and residencies on performance training and improvisation at institutions including the Manhattan School of Music, Boston Conservatory, New England Conservatory of Music, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Bowling Green State University, and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. In addition, she has served as Director of Apprentice Programs for Orlando Opera, and Opera Pacific; Music Director for the Wesley Balk Summer Institute; and as Guest Director of the Opera Workshops at Chapman University and Carnegie-Melon University.
Her diverse professional background includes roles as assistant conductor, coach, and chorus master in over 40 productions with celebrated singers Dame Joan Sutherland, James McCracken, and Ruth Ann Swenson and conductors Richard Bonynge, Anton Coppola, and Stewart Robertson. An accomplished pianist, Ms. Baltz played extensively on tour with Columbia Artist Concerts, Western Opera Theater, and Minnesota Opera.
Through her deep commitment to new and experimental works, Ms. Baltz earned distinguished posts as Music Director and Co-creator of Composer-Librettist Studios in San Francisco, New York, and Minneapolis, as well as Music Director for New Works Projects at the Minnesota Opera Institute and Portland Opera. In addition, she has co-created and performed several one-act operas nationally in which she and a cast of singers improvise musical scores in performances.
In 2004, Ms. Baltz received a Red Carpet Award from “Women In Theatre” recognizing her outstanding achievements in theater in Los Angeles. As a writer, Ms. Baltz has contributed articles for Opera America's publications Business Advice for Singers and Making Choices. Additional articles appear in Classical Singer, and Vocals magazines. She is a frequent adjudicator for national competitions including the regional and district levels of the Metropolitan Opera National Auditions.
Ms. Baltz earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of New Mexico and a Masters degree in Piano Accompanying from Arizona State University, the first graduate with this degree. She studied at the San Francisco Opera where she received the Otto Guth Award for outstanding coach in the Merola Program. She was a recipient of a prestigious grant from the National Institute for Music Theater to engage in an in-depth study of twelve operas and the Italian language.