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VanderCook College of Music

Faculty & Staff

Katelyn Lee


Recognized by Chicago Classical Review as having a “beautifully bright” and “silvery” tone, American soprano Katelyn Lee is making her mark in Chicago and across the United States. Known for her ability to sing numerous styles with ease, Katelyn is regularly sought after to perform opera, art song, musical theatre, and oratorio. This versatility has provided her with the opportunity to collaborate with notable arts organizations across the country.

Katelyn has performed numerous opera and musical theatre roles. Most recently, she performed the title role in Lyric Opera of Chicago’s production of Hansel and Gretel. Katelyn has sung in multiple productions at Lyric Opera and other companies such as Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Haymarket Opera Company, Chicago Opera Theater, Ozarks Lyric Opera, Cedar Rapids Opera, and Folks Operetta. Notable roles include Romilda in Serse, Rosina in The Barber of Seville, Doris Parker in Charlie Parker’s Yardbird, Antonia in Man of La Mancha, Cunegonde in Candide, Madame Goldentrill in The Impresario, Zerlina in Don Giovanni, and the Female Narrator in the world premiere of Jason and the Argonauts.

In concert, Katelyn has sung a wide variety of repertoire. She is an expert in Baroque performance practice and is a frequent soloist with Music of the Baroque, led by world-renowned conductor, Dame Jane Glover. Other credits include Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra, Northwest Indiana Symphony, Elgin Symphony Orchestra, Champaign-Urbana Symphony, Fort Wayne Philharmonic Orchestra, and Chicago a cappella.

Katelyn has been teaching voice for over twelve years. She began her teaching career in 2009 after receiving the prestigious Associate Instructor of Voice assistantship at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. During her tenure there, she taught both undergraduate and graduate-level college students and prepared them for juries, auditions, and other special events. Other Chicago-based organizations Katelyn is affiliated with are Music of the Baroque’s “Strong Voices” outreach program, Music Institute of Chicago, and the Cantabile School.

Through classical voice study, Katelyn believes students form a solid foundation in proper vocal technique that is applicable to every style of singing. Her job as teacher is to meet every individual need, and that cannot be done by simply consulting a teaching manual or pedagogy book. It can only be accomplished by forming a personal relationship with the student that encourages free and open communication. Learning a classical vocal technique involves a great deal of trial and error, and Katelyn strives to find an individual teaching language for each student that inspires confidence, diligence, perseverance, and most of all, joy in singing.

Katelyn received her Master of Music degree at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music and her Bachelor of Music degree at Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. She is currently based in Chicago and lives with her husband and tenor, Joe Shadday and their cat, Liza.


    The mission of VanderCook College of Music is to enrich the lives of present and future generations by developing uniquely skilled music teachers who exhibit strong character, professionalism, and a commitment to excellence.

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