Classical singer and actor, Savanna Griechen is in her fourth year teaching music at Braemar College. She started as an Instrumental Music Tutor in Classical Voice in 2013 with three students, and now has 14.
Savanna became a classroom teacher last year and is enjoying the opportunity to share her love of music and extensive industry experience with her students. Savanna has a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education and a minor in Drama. She studied at WAAPA (Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts), majoring in Classical voice.
She has performed in Musical Theatre tours of the UK whilst living in London. She also lived in Italy for 7 months touring shows around the country to help students develop their English language skills. This year Savanna has a contract singing chorus with Opera Australia coming up in October, and in March was an extra in a music video for Taylor Swift.
One of the things that Savanna enjoys most about her role at the College is watching students grow in confidence through singing and music. She says, “With music you get an immediate result. You can instantly see how much progress a student has made.”
Savanna also runs the Braemar College Music Theatre ensemble and the Cantare Choir. She says most of the students have been involved in these activities for years and there’s a great sense of community and camaraderie. She loves working in the Braemar College Music Department and enjoys having access to a lot of resources and being part of such a vibrant environment. “It’s great to have likeminded people around you. I get lots of support from the music department and we all work together to come up with new and interesting things for the kids.”
Savanna says that Braemar College stands out from other schools she has worked at because there’s such an eagerness for a variety of music to be performed and an overall attitude that music has value for our students.
“We aim for a balance between all genres of music and look at how we can make it engaging. There’s lots of talk between music staff about curriculum and how to make it interesting and consistent across all year levels. Our priority is to make it fun and to assist the students in becoming self-sufficient with music technology as well.”
Savanna says that there are so many unique things about Braemar. “Having an accompanist on staff is fantastic. All the instrumental staff are amazing musicians and sight readers. Shaun Evans is a bundle of energy and enthusiasm which infects all of us. Braemar College even offers instrumental lessons in harp, this is due to the wonderful work of Fran Thiele, something not possible at most other schools. Braemar College provides incredible opportunities for music students.”
“Celebration Night is my favourite night at the College. It’s high pressure for the Music Department, but it’s great to watch kids having fun rehearsing and getting to know other musicians from different year levels.”
Outside of her work at the College, Savanna spends time songwriting, singing and playing piano. She has taught herself to sew, and enjoys op shopping and vintage clothes.
Savanna is teaching herself German for her upcoming Opera Australia performance of Wagner’s Gotterdammerung. As well as English, she’s had to sing in German, Italian, French and Czech.
Her passion for her music and teaching clearly shines through.
More information about Savanna’s Opera Australia shows, and bookings can be found here.
You can listen to Savanna at her soundcloud.