Emily Raasch moved to Troy from Lincoln, Neb., about
two-and-a-half months ago and already wants to bring the sound of
music to her new hometown.
Raasch holds a bachelor of music in voice from the University of
Nebraska and has spent the past 16 years teaching voice and piano
lessons from her home, first in Lincoln and now in Troy.
She and her family moved to the area because her husband, Kris,
recently took a job as executive chef for the University of Idaho.
When she's not teaching private music lessons, Raasch also
substitute teaches in Troy schools.
She said they visited various communities in the area when
deciding where to move, and they fell in love with the small-town
atmosphere of Troy.
Raasch grew up in northeast Oregon and said she is happy to be
closer to her parents after living in Lincoln for 18 years.
Her own children, Isaiah, Isabelle, Sophia and Abigail, range in
age from 8 to 14 and are all involved in musical endeavors.
"All our kids sing well and love it," she said, adding that her
husband also sings. In fact, the two of them met during a community
theater performance of "Hello, Dolly!"
Raasch said her mother started her out with piano lessons when
she was very young, and she later took guitar lessons from her
third-grade teacher. But it wasn't until the sixth grade when she
really fell in love with music, she said.
"It gives me the chills thinking about it," she said, recalling
the afterschool chorus her music teacher taught. She said that
activity was what really started her on her discovery of music and
led to her realizing that she liked to sing.
Now Raasch wants to share that love of music with children in
the Troy area. In addition to teaching private lessons, she is
setting up a chorus for local homeschooled children to give them
the chance to sing in a structured setting.
She said she homeschooled her own children for several years and
now would like to work with homeschooled children while her four
are away in public school.
She said she already has some students for private lessons and
is accepting more but will have limited hours because she wants to
reserve some afterschool time for her own children.
"I really feel like the people I'm supposed to have (as
students) are going to find me," she said.
She said her private lessons typically last 30 minutes and
include vocal warmups and exercises, discussion of vocal techniques
and then the application of those techniques to actual songs.
She teaches aspiring musicians of all ages but said children are
in need of extra attention.
"There are not a lot of teachers that really understand a
child's voice and want to teach kids," she said.
She said many children end up yelling along with their favorite
songs, but it's important to teach them basic, healthy singing
skills so they don't destroy their voices.
Raasch said she used to perform gigs of her own in Lincon and
especially loves singing jazz. She said she is available to sing at
weddings and funerals, and she is in the process of directing a
mini Christmas musical at her family's church in Deary.
She said she hopes to bring more of an arts scene to Troy, which
is close to Moscow but doesn't have much entertainment of its
"This is a community of very talented people, and we would like
to see some of that talent tapped," Raasch said.
Families who are interested in learning more about Raasch's
voice and piano lessons or homeschool chorus can email her at
email@example.com. She added that her husband has a side
painting business that can also be contacted at that address.
Holly Bowen can be reached at (208) 882-5561,
ext. 239, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter: