Mission & History


We are dedicated to encouraging the highest standards of singing in all musical styles. Through our workshops, student competitions, and continuing education programs, we create opportunities for teachers and students to collaboratively engage in excellent teaching and singing. We believe a cooperative exchange of knowledge and skill enhances our understanding of the art and craft of singing.


The National Association of Teachers of Singing was founded in 1944 through the association of several east coast organizations.

There were a few Bay Area teachers who belonged to the national organization, but there were no local meetings or activities.

In the late 70’s a San Francisco singer who was eager to get more knowledge about vocal pedagogy and more exchange with other voice teachers, happened to see a flyer on the bulletin board at the Conservatory about a national voice teachers convention.

She went, knowing nobody, and having no idea what to expect. Within hours of arriving, she met several singers she had known on the East Coast, all of them very active in their local NATS chapters.

She returned to San Francisco with a wealth of knowledge, contacts, and resources in vocal pedagogy and invited about 15 friends who were singers / voice teachers to her house,

They were all enthusiastic about the idea of local cooperation and of connection to national and international resources. That afternoon over tea and cookies, the San Francisco Bay Area Chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing was formed.

Two years later it was one of the largest and most active chapters in the United States.

Dorothy Barnhouse