Lieder and Opera repertoire to singers in London

Nico is a vocal coach in the Vocal Department at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, UK. Nico’s interest in coaching started during his studies at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama where he regularly worked alongside singers and voice teachers. At the University of Michigan he was a coach to various voice students and was a coach for the University’s opera productions. Since completing his studies in Michigan in 2007 Nico has coached at various institutions including:

  • the Falun Konservatoriet, Birkagårdens Högskolan and the Kungliga Musikhögskolan in Stockholm, Sweden
  • University of Pretoria, University of Stellenbosch and Free State University, South Africa
  • the private studio of Barbara Bonney in Salzburg as well as the American Institute of Musical Studies’ Summer Programme in Graz, Austria since 2008-2012
  • Summer programmes including Abingdon Summer School for Solo Singers and Oxenfrood Summer School

    In addition to his engagement at the GSMD, Nico offers private coaching as well. Coachings usually takes place at either Schott Music Shop on Great Marlborough Street or  Jacques Samuels Pianos on Edgware Road, London. In some cases other venues could be arranged. For further information regarding rates and coachings, please use the contact form to contact Nico de Villiers.



    He is extraordinarily conscientious, meticulous in his preparation. He works very thoroughly with singers, and has a fine knowledge of languages and pronunciation. I have witnessed him coach singers, and am impressed with his understanding of the singing process, as well as his ability to communicate important concepts to the singer.

    Barbara Bonney, Lyric Soprano

    He is a brilliant coach with a particular gift for coaching languages. He understands how to break down text to make it accessible and easily understood. One of his greatest skills is the understanding of the voice and is sensitive to the students as they learn how to ‘play’ their elusive instrument.

    Rosa Mannion, Royal College of Music, London

    Through his comprehensive knowledge in the vocal area, his enthusiasm and teaching skills, he immediately won the students’ confidence. He identified the problems of each student and was able to find solutions to them.  I would highly recommend Nico de Villiers to work as a vocal coach at the highest level.

    Eva Larsson-Myrsten, Royal College of Music, Stockholm

    Nico de Villiers has been a valued member of the Lieder Coaching staff at the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz. His consummate playing, his excellent musicianship and his instruction of young singers and pianists is a joy to behold. As Artistic Director of AIMS, I am most pleased to recommend him highly.

    Dr. Thomas King, AIMS Artistic Director Emeritus

    Nico de Villiers was my coach at the American Institute of Musical Studies (AIMS) in Graz, Austria during the summer of 2011. I had just finished a very busy school year as a vocal performance major. Feeling a little run down, I attended AIMS hoping to find some source of inspiration. My coachings with Nico were exactly what I needed. He brought excitement and creativity to our work; he gave positive criticism in a way that made me happily strive to improve; he encouraged joy and passion for the music we were making. His extreme attention to detail, precision of diction and connection to text had a profound impact on me, pushing me to my highest potential. Nico is an all around wonderful teacher and coach. I highly recommend working with him.

    Erin Alcorn, Soprano (AIMS Student 2011)

    After working with Nico for six weeks, I felt genuinely changed for the better.  His enthusiasm and knowledge of music allows him to easily communicate concepts to student singers.  Nico facilitated improvement in my musicality when approaching pieces, as well as helping to further my acting and diction skills.  Having him as a coach was a vital part of my development as a singer, and I hope to continue to use his insightful instruction to further my growth as a performer.  Nico de Villiers is truly an outstanding coach and musician.

    Allison Crain (AIMS Student 2011)

    I realised after my first coaching that Nico was more than just a coach. After six weeks, not only had my German diction improved twofold, but my technique and musicianship as well. I looked forward to every coaching with Nico because of his sincere interest in my improvement. His dedication to the integrity of Lieder and all music truly inspired me and reaffirmed my own passion for singing.

    Lindsay McGinnis, Soprano (AIMS Student 2010)

    Though I only had the pleasure of working with Nico for six short weeks, I felt that I progressed more in that time than in my previous six years of study. No, I am not exaggerating. He is a truly talented musician, whose passion and expertise is contagious. He understands the voice and is able to articulately instruct and encourage his students.

    Caroline Murphy, Soprano (AIMS Student 2009)