About Mary

Musical theatre voice teacher, actress and cabaret performer

One of America's Top Voice Instructors

Mary Saunders is a Cum Laude/Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Mount Holyoke College with a Masters degree from Middlebury College and the Sorbonne, Paris. While in Paris, she studied with Pierre Bernac and received a diploma from the Ecole Normale de Musique.

She is Professor Emeritus of Musical Theatre Voice and Voice Pedagogy at Penn State University. She maintains a private studio in New York City for Broadway performers.

Veteran Performer and Teacher of current and future Broadway Professionals

Mary's performing career includes Broadway, off-Broadway, regional, film and television credits. Her first one-woman show, Stop, Time played to sell-out houses in New York City.

In this and recent seasons her students have been seen on Broadway in:

Wicked, Mamma Mia, Lion King, Book Of Mormon, Newsies, Kinky Boots, Bandstand, Miss Saigon, Sunset Boulevard, A Bronx Tale and Beautiful among others, as well as national tours and many regional productions.

International Presenter

Mary is frequently invited to present her workshop Bel Canto Can Belto for singers and teachers of singing in the U.S. and abroad. She has presented workshops and master classes for the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), the National Opera Association (NOA), the Voice Foundation Symposium and for musical theatre programs at many colleges and universities. Mary was the keynote musical theatre speaker at the 2013 International Congress of Voice Teachers in Brisbane, Australia. Recently, she was a master teacher for the 2017 NATS Intern Program at the University of Toronto in Toronto, Ontario.

Every other summer Mary and her musical theatre colleagues at Penn State offer a workshop entitled Bel Canto/Can Belto: Learning to Teach and Sing for Musical Theater on the University Park campus. She has produced two video tutorials, Bel Canto/Can Belto: Teaching Women to Sing Musical Theater, and What About the Boys? both now available on this site.

In 2009, Mary was inducted into the American Academy of Teachers of Singing in New York City.