"I was impressed by Robert’s professionalism and preparedness, as he expertly worked through the scores with the cast. And onstage, once again I was struck by Robert’s many talents as a piano player, as he was the sole musician on stage. Robert handled the incredibly difficult passages of those iconic scores with ease and dexterity, while still providing the requisite force and bravado to support the heightened drama of the songs. And again, in performance, he was a master accompanist, letting his instincts guide him to either lead the singers forward as required, or lay back while a performer emoted or back-phrased sections of music. He even lent his strong rangy bari-tenor voice to the proceedings, which was quite a pleasant surprise."
Jeff Madden (award-winning actor, singer, and musical theatre performer based in Toronto, Canada - currently in the hit musical Come From Away in Toronto, and previously starred as ‘Frankie Valli’ in both the Toronto and Australian productions of Jersey Boys.)
Collaborative piano is a lifelong passion of Robert's and he has a great deal of experience in this area - both singers, instrumentalists and dancers. He has maintained a private collaborative pianist and/or vocal studio for many years and has also freelanced for many institutions: Queens University, the University of Western Australia, Sheridan College, Randolph Academy of the Performing Arts,George Brown College, Canadian Children's Dance Theatre, and The Ontario School of Ballet amongst others.
Robert is always keen to explore new musical collaborations in this area. He is an excellent sight-reader, a quick study, and fluent in all styles of music from classical and opera, to pop, rock, folk and jazz. References are available upon request.
For several years Robert worked part-time in the Music Theatre Performance Program at StLawrence College in Brockville, Ontario in the role of vocal coach, accompanist, lecturer (and amateur psychologist).
In Toronto he played for numerous auditions and vocal masterclasses, including the following entities:
The Directors Series (Tracey Flye) - TorontoStephanie Gorin Casting Inc - TorontoDayton/Walters Casting Inc (Book of Mormon) - TorontoMagnus Theatre - Thunder Bay, OntarioPort Hope Festival Theatre - Port Hope, OntarioShowboat Festival Theatre - Port Colborne, OntarioCATS Mainstage Theatre Company - TorontoEtobicoke School of the Arts - TorontoBig Voice Studio (Elaine Overholt) - TorontoMicah Barne's Singers Playground - TorontoBremen Rock City- TorontoMusical Works in Concert - TorontoSEOK Productions - TorontoVOCAL/REPERTOIRE COACHING"It’s his fun- loving, kind and hilarious personality that makes him the best to work with. Everyone feels welcomed, happy and comfortable when Robert is in the room. He brings a certain levity to all situations, and this is very important when creating. Robert keeps the atmosphere relaxed when the students may feel tense about their own skills and ability. He teaches the students to have fun with what they are doing instead of fearing what they may sound like while they’re doing it. They love working with him because he treats them with respect."Kara Spencer - Director "Theatre Hive" - Brampton, Ontario
Robert also offers private vocal/repertoire coaching sessions for singers of all kinds. If you are preparing for an audition, struggling with a harmony line, need a recording, or looking to find some new repertoire (he has a huge selection for men AND women, particularly in the Music Theatre, pop and jazz, genres) then please consider contact Robert. He also offer general musicianship classes for singers who want to improve in that area.
Here is some video from a recent concert featuring Toronto pianist and conductor Oksana Vignan performing a duet of Greig's Peer Gynt Suite, followed by a video of Robert performing a mixture of classical, jazz, light pop, and ballads (piano solo pieces):
Robert will be one of the collaborative pianists contracted to play at the Australian National Band Championships, featuring four international adjudicators: Scott Weiss and Paul Popiel (USA) and Ian Porthouse and Tom Davoren (UK)
Robert will be the collaborative pianist for this event featuring performer, director, and lecturer Nicole Stinton, as part of the "Coffee and Conversation" series produced by the Western Australian chapter of ANATS (the Australian National Association of Teachers of Singing).