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Master of Music in Vocal Performance - University of Alberta - 1997-1999
Bachelor of Music with Honours - University of Alberta - 1993-1997
Maura Sharkey-Pryma has enjoyed teaching voice and performance artistry to young and mature singers for over 20 years, and instructs from both her private home studio and her studio at MacEwan University's Conservatory of Music in Edmonton. She trains and mentors students in classical, musical theatre, contemporary commercial music, song interpretation, breathing and vocal techniques, basic physiology, and aspects of voice and speech and acting training. In addition to helping singers select music and prepare songs for voice examinations, music festivals, and auditions, her main focus is insuring the voice is technically sound - functioning as it should for optimal vocal ease, quality and longevity - advocating for efficient vocal production. Along with teaching and performing as a freelance soloist, she is sought after as a vocal adjudicator and clinician.
Maura Sharkey-Pryma began voice study at the University of Alberta, receiving a Bachelor of Music and Masters of Music in Vocal Performance. She continued her training at the Salzburg Mozarteum Sommerakademie and with various Canadian opera training intensives. She has enjoyed a professional operatic career within Canada as well as the international stage. An enthusiastic critic wrote of Sharkey’s performance as, “an exuberant Canadian mezzo soprano…shows herself comfortable in all the registers, bursting precision and engraves resonance.” She is the 1998 winner of the Western Canadian Metropolitan Opera Council Auditions, a two-time award winner of the Johann Strauss Scholarship (1997, 1999), and recipient of the Anne Burrows Foundation Scholarship (2001). She also was proud to represent Canada at the Queen Elisabeth Music Competition in Belgium in 2004.
Her operatic credits include: Carmen in Carmen (Calgary Concert Opera Company); Mercedes in Carmen (Edmonton Opera and Manitoba Opera); Cinderella in La Cenerentola (Vancouver Opera Touring Ensemble); Dorabella in Cosi Fan Tutte (The Opera Project); The Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors (Opera NUOVA). On the concert stage, Ms. Sharkey-Pryma has appeared with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, the Edmonton Chamber Orchestra, the University of Alberta Orchestra in Elgar’s The Music Makers with the late Juno Award winner Malcolm Forsythe, and the Edmonton Youth Orchestra for their 60th Anniversary in a performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9.
In addition to her work as a teacher and soloist, Maura proudly served on the Board of Directors of the Alberta Music Education Foundation (AMEF) from 2011 - 2016 and served as the Chair from 2013-2016. During her tenure with AMEF, she was an active planning committee member of Music Conference Alberta (MCA), assisting in developing, producing, facilitating and hosting a yearly technical conference program. As a personal project, Maura co-authored a book with her husband, Raymond, entitled, The Essential Music Recital Planner, a step-by-step customizable planner to assist music teachers and students in developing a successful recital. Maura is a proud member of the National Association of Teachers of Music (NATS), the Alberta Registered Music Teachers’ Association (ARMTA), the Canadian Music Festival Adjudicators’ Association (CMFAA) and the Alberta Music Education Foundation (AMEF).
Fort Saskatchewan, Olds Music Festival, Coronation Music Festival, Sherwood Park Music Festival, Cardston Rotary Performing Arts Festival, Parkland Music Festival, Lethbridge & District Arts and Speech Festival, Drumheller Music Festival Association, Professional Arts Coalition of Edmonton, Northern Alberta Concerto Competition