Robert’s knowledge and his deep commitment to classical vocal traditions began with his studies under the late Lav Vrbanic, 26 years Chairman of the vocal department at the Zagreb Academy of Music, one of the world’s premiere music schools. Professor Vrbanic was widely regarded in Europe as one of a very few top vocal teachers in the world.
After retiring from the Academy, Professor Vrbanic served five years on the faculty of the New England Conservatory in Boston by invitation of the well-known American composer Gunther Schuller, then President of NEC. It was there that Robert studied for three years under Vrbanic’s masterful tutelage.
Those three years were unusually productive. Mr. Vrbanic was able to focus strictly on improving Robert’s vocal function and his understanding of it, since Robert could read new music flawlessly at first sight. Robert already had a minor in voice and excellent Italian, French, and German diction. Having previously earned a B.A. in Music with a major in violin, sight reading vocal music accurately was very easy for Robert.
Robert's musical tastes and experience are widely spread across multiple genres. He occasionally performs as a jazz singer, with great expertise in scat as well as improvised instrumental jazz. He also indulges in other genres on both trumpet and violin. His favorite performance genres include blues, R&B, and Latin in addition to classical.
Robert has a Master of Music performance degree in Choral Conducting from the University of Florida, Gainesville. He is an expert choral conductor with well over two decades of experience in teaching voice and directing choirs.
He has been teaching voice in Charlotte since 2006.