The Los Angeles Muses, or The LA Muses, were founded in 2006 by Monika Beal, Natalie Moran Clegg, and Baraka May Williams. These three songstresses studied Classical Voice at the Thornton School of Music at USC and are active members of the Classical Singer's Association. Fusing a love of tight harmonies, the LA Muses bring harmony to life with an energy and unique musicality. Trained and experienced in a variety of musical genres, each Muse brings her own edge and sensitivity to the trio's overall sound. The LA Muses provide energetic entertainment for your party; set the mood for your wedding; open your ceremony with stunning patriotic arrangements; or bring new life to your Christmas favorites.
Born in Kansas, Monika Beal is an active opera singer and performer in the greater Los Angeles area. Under the instruction of Shigemi Matsumoto, she studied opera in the Vocal Arts division of USC Thornton School of Music, and actively participated in the USC Thornton Opera program, Chamber Choir, Reverse Osmosis, and Chamber Opera of USC. She currently sings with local companies Long Beach Opera, Opera on Tap, Repertory Opera Company, and is a resident artist of Riverside Lyric Opera. Roles have included the charming Gretel from Hänsel und Gretel, Paloma in Zazuela, Traffic Guard in Moscow, CherryTown! and chorus or supernumerary in many more. Monika also lends her versatile vocals to composers' recordings and demos for foreign television, holiday and seasonal productions, and internet series, Comediva. She currently studies with John Duykers.
Soprano Natalie Moran Clegg, a native Southern Californian, is best known for her vocal quality, comedic character roles, and her musical and theatrical dedication. Natalie holds a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music and attended Oxford University. Natalie has performed throughout the US and Europe at venues including the Notre Dame Cathedral and the Walt Disney Concert Hall. She has also sung with the LA Philharmonic and the San Diego Symphony. Several of her operatic roles include Zerlina in Don Giovanni, Papagena and First Lady in Die Zauberflöte, the Witch in Hänsel und Gretel, and Adina in L’elisir d’amore. Companies she has sung with include Pacific Opera Project, Repertory Opera Company, Riverside Lyric Opera, and First Look Sonoma. She has participated in opera programs such as the Tyrolean Opera Program in Maurach am Achensee, Austria, the International Lyric Academy in Viterbo, Italy and the Riverside Opera Program in Riverside, California. She is currently a Resident Artist at Riverside Lyric Opera.
Baraka May is a seasoned professional vocalist and award-winning beatboxer, vocal arranger, and songwriter. Her work includes studio sessions, live performances, writing, arranging, and vocal coaching. Her studio work includes major motion pictures by Disney, Warner Brothers, Universal, Sony, Paramount, and Columbia Pictures, and she has been featured on numerous television and radio programs. She is featured on several albums including Cirque Du Soleil's Iris and the latest album by Grammy award-winning UK rock band, Muse. A passionate musician and Summa Cum Laude graduate of the University of Southern California, Baraka has grown up with a love of jazz passed down to her from her father and hero. With a voice colored by passion, depth, transparency, and intentionality, Baraka communicates the very heart and soul of each piece she sings, creating a living piece of art with each line. Baraka brings expertise and precision in a variety of genres as a unique and powerful lead vocalist and as a smooth, impeccably blended group singer.