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Natalie Limonick

February 2005

 

"How fortunate your students are to have a teacher so dedicated, who takes their interests and development so to heart! Bless you. It's so rare to find that commitment in today's "instant" world..." NOTE: Ms. Limonick was my primary mentor and a great musical presence in Southern California and beyond. Please read "A Personal Tribute" on the navigation menu.

 

Lydia F.

5/23/22

"Patricia is a brilliant Renaissance woman. She is what you get when you mix technical excellence and style with humility, compassion, and a lifelong commitment to the craft. She is simply the best! I feel incredibly lucky to have met Patricia and begun my singing journey with her. I've been a student at Studio Shanks since 2018, when I was fresh out of college and looking for a voice teacher who could earnestly teach me how to sing. At the time, there were flashy online ads for folks that could "make you a superstar" and all of it felt so loud and nothing seemed to fit. At one point Patricia returned my call. Immediately I knew that she was the right teacher for me. It was obvious that she is not just naturally fun and easygoing, but also a true technician when it comes to the craft of singing. It's been a few years since we began working together. I've discovered that singing is something that can be learned at any age. It requires hard work, but it can be done. Luckily, Patricia is entirely dedicated to the growth and success of her students. Knowing this makes it much easier to bring my own effort during and between classes. I am honestly amazed at how, despite having worked with many respected luminaries in the field, Patricia remains humble and always with a sense of humor that puts me at ease. She is everything that comprises a professional artist and educator. What I love most is that she cuts through the noise and focuses on pure foundations. That means that she is able to work with vocalists ranging from the most contemporary pop styles to opera to musical theatre and beyond. All kinds of singing require the same basic knowledge of healthy and safe vocal techniques. At Studio Shanks, everything counts and everything matters. Thank you so much, Patricia!"

Gavin J.

5/13/22

"Patricia Shanks was my vocal teacher for over 4 years when I was with the Amadeus Boys Choir in Moorpark, CA in the 1990s. She was a consummate professional, who instilled in me work ethic, perseverance, drive, teamwork and a passion for music that's never left me. She can see when a kid has talent, and takes them to the next level in music. Looking back, what I felt made our Amadeus Boys Choir (and Amadeus Boys & Girls Choir) so great (which took us to selling out major concert halls such as the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza and doing mall tours) was how she not only taught us how to sing, but also taught us music history and the words BEHIND the music we were singing. Being an 8 year old American singing in Latin, German, Spanish, Italian etc., and being able to sing it as if it's our first language is very hard to learn (let alone teach) to adolescent kids. Patricia is a perfectionist who made sure we mastered it, with a maternal teaching style mixed with a stern attention to detail. She makes you want to sing, want to take the stage, and want to be confident at a young age with your head held high. Being one of her students was one of the highlights of my life, and even though I'm not a singer anymore, the work ethic and entertainment direction she gave us as talent has made me into the successful TV producer I am today. She will change any person's life who's a singer, and make them the best they can be as a performer, artist, musician, and singer."

Christina G.

10/27/20

"She provides amazing input to detail and cares for her students. Patricia is a wonderful teacher and her heart is most memorable."

Silvia M.

11/7/18

"Hi! I'm so glad I'm having found a marvelous and excellent voice teacher for my daughter. My daughter is happy and optimistic in taking voice lessons with Patricia. My daughter has been taking lessons for three months now with Patricia, within two months her violin teacher noticed a great improvement in her voice from before to after she started taking her lessons. She made a big difference in a short amount of time. She has grown a lot and she before was really shy and would not sing, now she has gained confidence and signs. My daughter is always enthusiastic and happy to go take lessons with Patricia. Thank you Patricia, you are the best!"

Cindy S.

10/20/18

"Patricia is such an amazing teacher & truly cares about her students. She gives great feedback to her students and communicates to the parents. She was always willing to accommodate my family and schedule."

Arlene B.

10/3/17

"Wonderful instructor. My teenage daughter really enjoys her lessons. Patricia is very flexible with scheduling around her classes and after school activities. Grateful we found her."

Nathan U.

11/23/15

"Patricia is very knowledgeable and truly understands how to teach voice properly. She is an accomplished pianist in addition to her singing expertise and has a vast amount of experience in the music industry. My daughter has been taking voice lessons for over 2 years now and has grown incredibly in her ability and confidence as a singer thanks to Patricia."

Michael M.

11/19/15

"Patricia has taught my boys piano for over 3 years and their progression over the years has been phenomenal! She communicates well with me and the boys, she is an outside-the-box type teacher who uses technology as a tool to teach, and she pushes the boys to perform to the best of their abilities. If you are truly interested in having a music teacher that can really teach your child music, it is a no-brainer."

Salvatore M.

9/28/15

"The true test of an excellent teacher is that when you leave the lesson you feel good. Patricia encourages her students to be the best that they can be. She truly understands the voice and what the student needs to do to improve their singing . Bravo Patricia !!!!"

Tina P.

9/17/15

"Patricia Shanks is an excellent voice teacher! My daughter started with Patricia back in 2013 and it is hard to describe the service she provides. Not only did she teach my daughter how to breathe and find her voice, but she has instilled in my daughter a confidence to perform that she never had before. Patricia is tough and tells it like it is - "you haven't practiced" "Stop and breathe", etc. Sometimes it's tough to hear, but she REALLY knows her stuff. Her ability to pinpoint areas for improvement and to compliment the student's growth is outstanding. I can't say enough about this lady! Thank you for the priceless gift you have given Julia! Sincerely, Tina Pacific"

B. B.

9/11/15

"I am still going to Patricia Shanks! It's been 2 years now! She has moved recently and I love her new location! It's right off of Forbes road off of the Crown Valley Pkwy exit on the 5. She's still amazing. And her ability to help you improve is top notch. She knows voices!!! I can't sing her praises highly enough. Pun intended. ------------------------------------------- Original review: I have been going to Patricia for Voice Lessons for several months now. I love it! She is positive, motivating and she truly cares about your progress. She will show you how to sing and gives a multitude of examples to explain how the process should feel. Her way of teaching goes beyond others as they don't get down to the specifics of how your mouth, tongue and jaw should be shaped, held, and moved. She does! If you are willing to make an effort to really try to change and sing properly, you will love her. I highly recommend her for voice lessons!"

Sarah M.

8/12/14

"As an aspiring singer I have seen many voice teachers in my 11 years, some teachers charging $70+ for as little as half an hour. What you pay for is not always what you get. After studying with Patricia for a year now, I have seen more improvement with her than I have seen with any other teacher. She is approachable, kind, patient, easy to talk to, and most importantly, she knows what she's talking about. Patricia has looked for opportunities for me to perform and is undoubtedly the best voice teacher I have ever seen. I recommend her to my friends all the time, and am going to miss her as I am going away to college. She really is the best and I biggest regret is not going to her sooner. Don't hesitate to go in for a visit! She is more than worth it!"

Angelina J.

2/18/14

"Patricia is a great voice/piano teacher as well as an amazing person. When I was searching for someone to work with a few years ago, I wanted someone who knew what they were talking about but also a pleasure to be around. Right from the start she drilled the fundamentals and stressed proper form and technique that will help you produce better quality sound and save your vocal chords from strain. Even though she was there to help my voice, she also spent time making sure I understood what I was singing, the basics on reading and understanding sheet music. We always started with vocal warm-ups, skill work, and then spent time working on a song of my choice or one she thought would be perfect for me. Over the years my knowledge increased, voice strain decreased, tone was clearer, and my confidence soared working with Patricia. I record a lot at home and the clarity in my pitch and even pronunciation while singing has significantly improved. It is so nice to hit a high note and not feel like I am screaming or straining. She is someone who truly cares about her students and has a passion for teaching people of all ages may it be piano or voice. Being a student of Patricia for so many years, I can honestly say she will go above and beyond to make sure her students have a wonderful experience and spend countless hours behind the scenes organizing recitals'', studio days and other activities so her students can share their gifts."

William K.

11/30/12

"I am a beginning piano student attempting to gain some skill at this late time in my life. Patricia is a congenial and caring piano instructor with boundless patience for one like me. I would recommend her without qualification."

Brian F.

4/27/12

"Best Voice Teacher EVER!! She truly cares about you and your progress."

Jay P.

11/30/11

"Before I begin, just a little background on me: I am an R&B singer/songwriter who has studied voice for over 25 years with at least a dozen voice coaches in both Atlanta and California. My most recent placement was co-writing and singing background vocals on Johnny Gill's new album, "Still Winning." I am currently producing/writing for Universal Publishing Music Group. That said, Patricia Shanks is THE first vocal instructor I've had who is as passionate about teaching as she is her craft. Her approach is tailored specifically to how YOU learn, making it easier to grasp concepts/techniques. She is also one of the only voice teachers I know of that keeps an up-to-date blog and links to various voice resources on her site. Just the few books I read in her "recommended" book list have completely changed my perspective on singing, namely "The Naked Voice," and "Effortless Mastery." She got straight to the point with me, and was able to identify the problem areas very quickly. She's shown me a ton of little tips and tricks, which help me to visualize things easier, and have helped before recording sessions/performances. Her studio space is also clean and professional. Most importantly, I have noticed a huge difference in my voice. Because I record often in my home studio, I can actually hear the difference when compared with earlier material. I feel more relaxed, more consistent, more balanced in tone, and freer in my upper range as a result. Seriously, this probably sounds like a paid advertisement (which is why I included the disclaimer at the beginning), but I was very happy to have found Patricia randomly surfing the internet, due to the lack of information on voice instructors in South Orange County. I get something new out of each lesson. If you want the best, look no further."

Karean C.

4/27/11

"My daughters have been studying voice and piano with Patricia and have been taught very valuable and important skills that every music student should learn. Patricia won't sugar coat it and just let you sing the latest pop song out there. She really takes the time to find the ideal piece of music that will enhance the students learning and musical skills. In just a short time my 10 year old daughter is reading music and playing several piano pieces during her practice routine. Patricia makes sure you learn how to sing properly so that you can go the mile without straining or damaging your voice. I highly recommend Patrica for both voice and piano training."

Madoka U.

4/3/11

"If you want real voice lessons, no drama, no BS, a teacher who gets down to your voice's bizness, Patricia is your lady. She has an amazing personality, and makes me laugh sooo much, but she does not mess around. She is like a warrior queen and renaissance artist and scientist all combined - strong, focused, knowledgeable, and overflowing with passion and vigor for her art. I've had other voice teachers in the past, one in particular, who would make me produce up to the highest possible sound in my range, every lesson. I asked her if I was supposed to be straining, and all she said was, "Oh, no! That's not supposed to happen!" but offered no real solutions because she obviously didn't know what was actually happening in my voice. She was kind of in the dark as she told me to try different things and said "Did that help? Did that help?" And she was a classical voice teacher! NOT PATRICIA! Patricia KNOWS. Patricia knows exactly what's happening. Bad vocal technique flee in terror in her presence. I don't even know how to explain how relieving this is, that the person you're entrusting your voice to knows exactly what's happening to it, from tongue position, larynx bobbage, jaw, support, breathing, you name it. It's all very logical, and she teaches you to line everything up correctly to produce the correct sound. It makes so much sense because you're cutting all the other drama out of lessons ("Sing with more energy!" "Let's analyze these lyrics!") and getting down to the nitty gritty and actually learning to handle your voice as an instrument you can own. She just has this overflowing respect for music. It is a fine art. There was something on her website which really stuck with me even before I started taking lessons with her, which I cannot find now, but it said something like, "This studio is for students who serve their art, not students who use their art to serve them." Can I get an AMEN? Just reading her tweets is enlightening. "Much of the singing we hear is dangerous, potentially injurious. A real artist interested in longevity learns to do it right." If you merely want to "sound" good, you can go elsewhere, or teach yourself that, even, but if you are passionate enough about singing to want solid technique that will allow you to keep your voice healthy for the rest of your life, go to Patricia. Your voice will thank you."

Melody Pezeshkian

7/26/21

"I took vocal and piano lessons from Patricia for a few years in high school. It's almost been 5 years and I still refer back to some of her teachings; Patricia is a wealth of knowledge and I am amazed how much I learned about singing and the body from her.
With Patricia, singing begins with the breath. In our first few lessons I began to unlearn the unnatural ways of breathing which had become so automatic to me. It was great to have a vocal coach whose style is so comprehensive and holistic. An added plus about Patricia is her amazing personality and sense of humor that made our teacher-student relationship more comfortable and easygoing. Patricia emphasizes in her lessons that singing is not about how it sounds but how it feels. She places great emphasis on finding a natural quality to the voice--making sure students aren't imitating an autotuned radio voice but rather finding what feels best for them (and ultimately does sound best as a result)."

Jerry Less

7/15/21

"If you are looking for a great singing teacher, definitely check out Patricia Shanks. She can teach you anything from classical to jazz to musical theater to pop. She knows her craft thoroughly and is totally supportive. She can actually make lessons fun and you will be amazed at how quickly you improve if you use her techniques. She is wonderful at working with all ages of students. And she is reasonably priced. She is currently teaching online as that is the way things are now for most of us and she knows how to make that work. Studying with her is an amazing .experience. I would strongly reccomend her."

Troz Pietraszuk

"What can I say. Patricia Shanks is an Awesome instructor and will push you to get the best out of you. Makes the lessons enjoyable topped off with laughter and the laughter helps, to ease your nerves/fears; which is always a good cure. As a professional guitar player/instructor looking to add singing to my resume and with a goal to sing on my next studio album ( trozpietraszuk dot hearnow dot com); I would highly recommend Patricia Shanks."

Serena Brinderson

"Patricia is an incredible teacher, with invaluable depth of knowledge and experience. I highly recommend her to anyone who wants to delve into voice technique and wants to broaden their ability. Patricia knows how to break down the basics and work with you until you get it. She has an uplifting spirit and the ability to always make you laugh!"

Patty Zantos

"I was able to work with Patricia for about 6 months. She quicky spotted a few of my trouble spots & helped me correct them. She is very personable! She works diligently to get the best voice out of you! I appreciated my time with her very much."

 

Noriko K.

Exchange student from Naraken, Japan

“Thank you for teaching me... You taught me like more than what I expect. You are very detail in your ways. So I enjoyed learning... I can't know when I come back here, but I don't forget. Your lesson was very fun...”

 

Lydia W.

Adult Student

"Patricia is a rare find -- a most wonderful teacher, of voice and life, who challenges and yet can laugh, and has patience beyond belief. As an amateur singer, I have learned to breathe (amazing how we forget), relax and trust myself, ...I highly recommend Patricia for anyone wanting to grow personally and vocally."

 

Julie H.

Adult Student

“...of seven voice coach choices, I was drawn to Patricia. I am so glad I did. She is amazing. I was so nervous at my first lesson. Patricia has such a calming, warm personality. She instantly helped me relax, gives me the encouragement I need, and has taught me so many "secrets" of singing. I now have the confidence to sing in a small ensemble at Church...”

 

Mia K.

Middle School Student

"I love your classes so much and I can't wait to continue. I am so excited to continue my musical career! Thank you soooo much! ...You are the best."

 

Bernadette A.

Adult Student

"Thank you for working so hard with me. You've been one of the best vocal coaches I've had. I certainly learned a lot due to your commitment and expertise. I hope I'll find another coach who's as knowledgeable & dedicated as you are. I'll keep in touch w/you when I'm in NYC."

 

Adelina T.

Student from age 10 to age 16

"You have been my teacher, my friend, and my inspiration. Thank you for everything."

 

Gina O.

Parent of Middle School Student

"...I am so grateful for all your hard work and amazing dedication! And we are so blessed to know you!"

 

Archna P.

Adult Student

"Because of your dedication to technique, creative visuals and constant encouragement - you helped transform my 'forced' tone into a more natural, easy, effortless sound. Thank you!"

 

Marissa C.

Adult Student

"She is patient and it is evident that she wants me to succeed! She keeps her full attention on me to make sure that I am doing things right. If you are looking for a teacher who both takes her work serious and has an outgoing personality, she is the person to go to! =D"

Teddy

"Great teacher and experience! Lessons are personalized to your needs to help you make the most progress."

Posted Mar 26, 2017

 

Marissa J Hoffman

"Patricia is the teacher you need if you are serious about taking your singing to the next level. Her classes are challenging but she is patient. With each of her classes I learn valuable skills and techniques that I will use forever. She is truly a pro at what she does. Plus, she's fun! I couldn't imagine a better vocal coach."

Posted May 20, 2016

 

Nathan Urone

"Patricia has not only trained my daughter to sing correctly and read music wonderfully, she has also developed a strong relationship with her and given her self confidence and a love of music in general."

Posted Nov 20, 2015

 

Roland Henderson

"A little over a year ago I decided to take singing lessons. I scoured the internet and Yelp. It became apparent that I should try with Patricia Shanks. From my initial evaluation to the present day I am happy to say I made the right choice. On two counts. One, Patricia is long on substance and understands her craft at the highest possible level. She knows what she's doing. Count two, she blends into her approach a high level of compassion and just plain old down-to-earth care & concern for your best result and happiness and success. She immediately made feel comfortable and "accepted". And genuinely so. I have grown in the abundance of her able guidance. In this day and age of quick fixes and minimal effort it is refreshing to have someone performing her tasks as she does. You will NOT be disappointed. She is, in every sense of the word "Perfect"."

Posted Nov 19, 2015

 

Michael

"Patricia has taught my boys piano for over 3 years and their progression over the years has been phenomenal! She communicates well with me and boys, she is an outside-the-box type teacher who uses technology as a tool to teach, and she pushes the boys to perform to the best of their abilities. If you are truly interested in having a music teacher that can really teach your child music, it is a no-brainer."

Posted Nov 19, 2015

 

Lori Cowper

"Patricia has phenomenal presence and knowledge. She is a detailed and skilled voice coach. And, her warm enviting personality are a delight. I highly recommend her as a truly respected artist. Thank-you Patricia:)"

Posted Sep 22, 2015

 

Dorothy Solomon

"Over the past year, my two children have taken singing lessons with Patricia. My kids are polar opposites of each other - in age, temperament, behavior, patience - you name it. My 14 year old daughter is in the gifted program at high school and my son in on the spectrum and spends part of each day in the special day class at his elementary school. Somehow, Patricia is able to provide individually tailored lessons for each child. They absolutely love going to see her! As a mother, nothing is more important than seeing your children thrive. This has been a richly rewarding experience for all of us."

Posted Nov 28, 2014

 

Joan McClanahan

"Patricia is an amazing instructor on many levels. While she is an accomplished performer in her own right, she is equally able to break down the necessary vocal techniques in a manner that all ages and all levels can relate to. Lessons with Patricia are productive, but they are also fun! You will not find a more dedicated vocal coach anywhere."

Posted Oct 27, 2014

Norma L.

"My daughter had the opportunity to attended Mrs. Shanks’ classes at Anaheim Hills, and we were glad on her voice’s technique improvement. Also, Mrs. Shanks inspired her to sing in Italian, increasing her self-confidence. It was a very good experience."

 

Meredith S.

"My daughter has been attending piano and voice lessons with Ms. Shanks for a few years. My daughter has progressed at a comfortable and steady pace that has allowed her to truly grasp concepts of piano and voice; information that will be needed throughout any potential musical career. I appreciate Ms. Shanks patience and graceful way of instructing; she never makes one feel embarrassed or inferior when a mistake has been made. I have since taken a few voice lessons from Ms. Shanks, reintroducing myself to instruction. Ms. Shanks has challenged me already by teaching me concepts that I never imagined would be beneficial to voice. I highly recommend Ms. Shanks for one that is looking for genuine and professional instruction."

Preeti S.

"My daughter took voice lessons from Patricia Shanks for ~4 years before leaving for college. She had previously trained with many other voice coaches, but our experience with Patricia remains unparalleled. In addition to being warm, friendly, encouraging, and professional, Patricia is a master of technique. She made sure that the proper foundation was set before moving on to anything else. Patricia also took great initiative in finding and creating opportunities for my daughter to perform, compete, earn certifications, and gain confidence on-stage. Her dedication to her students, constant support and encouragement, and passion for music and teaching is truly inspiring. I would highly recommend her to anyone looking for a vocal instructor!"

 

Matthew E.

"Patricia is one of the best voice teachers ever. I loved working with her. She is one of the nicest people you will ever meet. She helped me so much as a singer; we sang some great repertoire of songs as well. She was so very nice in all the times I was there for voice lessons; we always had great conversations before starting sessions even during sessions. She has a great sense of humor. I was laughing a lot haha. She is patient and supportive too. She cares a lot about you and does her best to make sure you have the fundamentals for being a good singer. I learned so much from my time with her. In addition, she told me stories about her time working in the industry which was really super cool. I even saw her Emmy she won for her work. Very awesome. Anyways, if you are looking for a great voice teacher, I highly recommend Patricia. She is a wonderful person and she loves what she does for her students. She rules. :-)"

 

Kimberley D.

"Patricia was the best voice teacher my daughter has ever had. She taught her so much and really took my daughter’s voice performance to the next level. She was professional and kind and my daughter really enjoyed working with her."

 

Julia U.

"Patricia Shanks was the best voice teacher I ever had. I worked with her for about 4 years after searching for the right teacher. Throughout my whole experience she was always counted upon to be encouraging, instructive, professional, and knowledgeable on an innumerable plethora of techniques and strategies for vocal strengthening skills. She is very experienced, and has worked in the performing arts as both a performer herself, and a teacher. She always had good recommendations for song choices and performance tips when I was looking to audition in the performing arts world. She always had my best interest at heart, and always pushed me to be the best I could be. She provided many opportunities for me to perform and compete (such as in Certificate of Merit, seasonal recitals, and Branch Honors) which allowed me to improve my own skills as well as watch/interact with other very talented musical students. If you're looking for an honest, demonstrative, sincere, and passionate vocal coach with knowledge and experience about her craft, Patricia Shanks is the one to beat!"

 

Charis W.

"My daughter has been taking lessons with Patricia for over a year. She has really developed her voice and learned how to sing properly with good technique. She has given her vocal exercises so she can work at home and it has helped her in auditions for musical theater. She has frequently helped her with specific audition pieces. She is very willing to work with my daughter as well on songs to build up her repertoire and challenge her. She has a lot of fun and enjoys her lessons every week."

 

Stacey T.

"Patricia was such an amazing surprise to us. My daughter is in high school and is very uncomfortable around new people. In addition, she desires to be a singer but is shy. I was so surprised when Patricia brought my daughter back into her room for her lesson and I heard talking, singing and laughing. My daughter came out after the lesson smiling. Throughout each lesson, my daughter was given tasks to practice prior to her next lesson. There was follow up to the assignments and many useful suggestions to improve. In fact, as the lessons progressed, I realized that Patricia could teach me proper breathing to help with my playing the trumpet so I employed her as well. Sadly, we were unable to continue with lessons as my daughter’s high school classes got harder and harder. I, however, still use the homework and CD that Patricia gave to me as a warm up to my trumpet practice. Thank you Patricia for all your knowledge, helpfulness and friendliness."

 

Fatima R.

"Both of my daughters take voice lessons with Patricia. Patricia has taught both of them to become amazing singers. My younger daughter just started and has loved lessons with Patricia from the start. My older daughter has received the lead roles in every one of her school plays, (thank you Patricia for helping my daughter live our one of her life’s passions). Both my daughters look forward to their lessons with Patricia every week. Patricia also accompanies them with the piano while In singing lessons. Which she is marvelous at! Thank you Patricia for teaching my daughters so much while letting them have a great time doing it! You are truly gifted with amazing talent to teach voice and piano!!!"

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