Sheila is a classically trained dramatic soprano and passionate educator who has led her students to great personal and professional success in music and performance. She is a member of the National Association Teachers of Singing with more than fifteen years of experience teaching classical voice, opera and musical theatre.
In 2018, Sheila was awarded 'Teacher of the Year' by the Coquitlam District Music Festival in honour of her students' achievements in the festival.
Sheila is on faculty at the Richmond Academy of Dance and maintains a thriving private home studio in Surrey, BC. Sheila consults with the Delta School District in their academies program to offer vocal training to the students of the Delta Opera & Performance Academy with Vancouver Opera and the Delta Film Academy.
Sheila has coached vocal students all the way to the BC Provincial Music Festival where, for the past four years, her students have achieved first place standings in both the Classical Voice (2015-2018) and Musical Theatre Voice (2017-2018) categories. Sheila’s students have gone on to study at the University of British Columbia, the University of Lethbridge, the Vancouver Academy of Music, Boston University’s Tanglewood Summer Institute, Sheridan College, Randolph Academy, the Canadian College of the Performing Arts and Capilano University.
Sheila is a sought-after adjudicator and clinician for university-level master classes and regional festivals across Western Canada. In 2018, Sheila adjudicated the 2018 Lethbridge District Music & Speech Arts Festival in Alberta and presented a masterclass at the University of Lethbridge, her alma mater. She also conducted a series of masterclasses with the Young People's Opera Society of BC. She also adjudicated the 2019 Prince George District Music Festival.
Sheila firmly believes that professional development is essential to her success. Thanks to a grant from the Vancouver Opera Chorus Endowment Fund, she attended the NATS National Conference in Las Vegas and attended several masterclasses on new techniques for teaching and supporting young voices. Currently, Sheila is furthering her knowledge of vocal pedagogy in her studies of the 'Vocal Instrument 101' course taught by celebrated pedagogue, Shannon Coates.
In addition to teaching, Sheila maintains a busy performing career. In her most recent appearance as a soprano soloist in Britten’s War Requiem with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, she was met with critical acclaim from Classical Voice North America’s David Gordon Duke: “The late Russian diva Galina Vishnevskaya’s inimitable sound informs the soprano writing, and the young Christie worked the part’s fierceness, defiance and almost hysterical intensity.”
Before joining Vancouver Opera’s Yulanda M. Faris Young Artist Program, Sheila was a featured artist in the Georgia Straight’s Fall Arts Preview. As a member of the Young Artist Program, Sheila performed the title role in Gustav Holst’s Savitri and covered four main-stage roles including Tosca in Tosca, Lady Billows in Albert Herring, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni and Elisabetta in Don Carlo.
Further highlights include the High Priestess in Aida and Giovanna in Rigoletto (Vancouver Opera), the soloist in An Evening in Roma (Vancouver Symphony Orchestra), Hanna Glawari in The Merry Widow (Burnaby Lyric Opera) and soprano soloist in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 (Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra). Sheila is a long-standing member of the Vancouver Opera Chorus and often performs in Vancouver Opera’s community outreach events.