Acting and Singing with Archetypes is a performance training method that expands the performer’s imaginative, physical, and vocal range leading to more fully developed characterizations on stage. With effectiveness and efficiency, this method complements all performance training practices. Using individual story telling narratives from myths and legends for each archetype - benevolent leader, warrior, mother, maiden, crone, and more – performers are guided to find the vocal, physical, and psychological elements contained within themselves. Discoveries made in the narratives are then applied to character building in rehearsal and performance.

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Founder and Author

          Janet Rodgers is Professor Emerita of Theatre at Virginia Commonwealth University where she taught for 25 years and created the first MFA with emphasis in Voice and Speech Pedagogy in the USA and, for seven years, was Head of Performance. Prior to VCU, she taught at the Boston Conservatory of Music and was principal actress with The Boston Shakespeare Company and Boston’s Lyric Stage as well as performing Off Broadway at La Mama Theatre.

            Janet has dialect coached well over 120 theatre and film productions (most recently Cadence Theatre’s production of Sight Unseen and AMC’s Turn) in the Richmond area and has worked with thousands of actors. A Fulbright Scholar to Romania, she directed American and Romanian students in a production of Caryl Churchill’s play, Mad Forest, which was performed at the Sibiu International Theatre Festival in 2004. 

            Recently, Janet was recognized as ‘Distinguished Member’ for her many years of leadership in the international Voice and Speech Trainers Association (VASTA) and also received the ‘Distinguished Teaching Award’ from VCU’s School of the Arts.

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Founder and Author

            Frankie Armstrong has been working as a professional singing artist since 1964 and has produced nine solo albums as well as being featured on numerous shared and themed recordings. She has contributed chapters to 11 books, written an autobiography and co-edited Well Tuned Women: Growing Strong Through Voicework with Jenny Pearson. In 2017, Frankie was made president of the Natural Voice Networkwhich is an organization that grew out of the Natural Voice Practitioners Network of which she is an initiating member.

            Frankie’s passion for the traditional styles of singing in the British Isles and from around the world informed the development of voice and singing workshops which were also influenced by her background as a trainer in social and youth work. In Frankie’s journey, she had the good fortune to study, perform and record with leading figures of the folk revival such as Louis Killen, Ewan MacColl and Bert Lloyd. With Peggy Seeger and Sandra Kerr, Frankie researched and developed The Female Frolic for live performance and a recording, which began her particular interest in women’s lives as illuminated through song. Frankie’s repertoire consists of rural, industrial, music hall and contemporary British songs as well as her own compositions and those of other songwriters such as Sandra Kerr, Leon Rosselson and Bertolt Brecht. 

            Frankie represents the very best in folk art, and in 2018, she was awarded the Gold Badge Award by the English Folk Dance and Song Society for her outstanding contributions to traditional British song.




CHRISTINE MORRIS is an actor, voice coach, teacher and director based in North Carolina. She is an associate professor at UNCG Greensboro and also resident vocal coach at Triad Stage, an Equity theatre producing in both downtown Greensboro and Winston Salem..She has been working with Vocal Archetypes since 2011, studying with Janet Rodgers and Frankie Armstrong in two intensives on Cape Cod, and performing in several featured presentations of the work at the VASTA conference in London in 2014. She became certified as a teacher in 2015. She also includes the work of archetypes in her vocabulary as an actor, drawing upon them (and their “shadows”) as she creates a role.



Bill J. Adams is an Art Song specialist, opera and musical theatre performer, arts administrator, and associate professor. He is a certified Master Teacher of two performance training pedagogies: Acting and Singing with Archetypes and Estill Voice Training. Bill J. has presented Acting and Singing with Archetypes and singing workshops at the Southeastern Theatre Conference, the Florida Theatre Conference, and as a guest artist at Belmont University and University of North Carolina Greensboro. He coordinates the performing arts programs in the Department of Performing and Visual Arts at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale. 

Specializing in character work, Bill J. premiered the role of Ariel in The Rape of the Lockand sang Vašek in The Bartered Bride, Monostatos in Die Zauberflöte, and Goro in Madama Butterflywhile living in New York. Regional credits include Ciccio in Most Happy Fella with William Michals and Jessica Hershberg at Palm Beach Dramaworks, Loutzenheiser the mad trapper in Cannibal: the Musical with the Promethean Theatre, Mike in William Bolcom’s A View from the Bridge with Opera Theatre of Pittsburg, the Mayor in Albert Herring with the Orlando Opera Company, and Zangara in Stephen Sondheim’s Assassins with the Orlando Civic Theatre. 

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Allison Hetzelis an Associate Professor of Voice and Acting at the University of Alabama. She recently performed her latest one-woman show “Step Mama Drama” at the 2018 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and will also perform at the 2019 United Solo Show in New York City at Theatre Row. Her vocal coaching credits include the Colorado Shakespeare Festival (2011), and the New York productions of Hell(2012) and Alcestis Ascending (2013). Recent roles include Toni in Appropriateand Flo in Picnic.  Allison created and performed in a one-woman show titled Considering Georgia O’Keeffewhich she staged at the 2009/2010 Edinburgh Festival Fringe and the 2010 East to Edinburgh Festival in New York City. Allison is an Associate Teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework (2008) and a Master Teacher of Archetypes for Actors (2015). She is a member of the Voice and Speech Trainers Association (VASTA) and is entering her tenth year as a teacher with Arts n Autism.

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Amy Mihyang GInther is a professor in the Theater Arts Dept. at UC Santa Cruz. She is a queer, transracially adopted woman of color who is a Master Teacher of this work and has taught workshops all over the US, South Korea, and the UK, in collaboration with companies like Mu Theatre, Seoul Shakespeare Company, and Savage Umbrella. She has recently collaborated with Dr. Oh Myo Kim to work with adopted people of color to examine the potential of this work as a form of dramatherapy to support those with trauma related to adoption.


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Sheila Gordon, Associate Professor of Acting and Voice at St. Edward’s University, is the resident voice and dialect coach at the Mary Moody Northen Theatre, an URTA house. Specializing in both Michael Chekhov and Feldenkrais, she has an extensive background in movement related approaches to both acting and voice production.



CLAUDIA ANDERSON is a singer, actor, teacher, and voice/dialect coach based in Chicago. She is Professor Emerita from The Theatre School, DePaul University, with 45 years of full-time teaching, including 18 years teaching and coaching at DePaul.  Claudia met Janet over thirty years ago, while serving on the board of the Voice and Speech Trainers Association, and first encountered Frankie Armstrong in 1993 at the VASTA Conference. A Designated Linklater Voice Teacher, Claudia incorporated Acting and Singing with Archetypes and Frankie’s approach to singing in her classes. She offers workshops in Linklater Voice and Acting and Singing with Archetypes. The Archetype work and Frankie’s legacy as a traditional folk singer informs Claudia’s performance as singer/actor/storyteller.