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Gwendolyn Overland

Gwendolyn Overland holds bachelor and graduate degrees in music performance from Southern Illinois University, a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of California, Irvine, and a PhD. in theater from UCLA.

She also holds a Master of Arts degree in Psychology and is soon to receive a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Meridian University, Petaluma, CA.

Gwen teaches part-time at Rogue Community College. She leads expressive voice therapy workshops internationally and maintains a private voice studio. Gwen has also worked for Kolpia Counseling in both Medford and Ashland, On Track, Inc. in Medford, and as a Jackson County Mental Health Youth Suicide Interventionist, all in Oregon.

Ashland, Oregon is her home, where she lives with her husband, son and two pugs.

Become the truth to your voice

For years I have been enamored by foreign languages, even to the point of disregarding my own..
And lately my imagination has been swept up by one of the most exquisite languages of love—
Spanish. For me learning Spanish is about communication, but even more important, it is about
another layer of vocal expression—la poesía—the passionate combination of melodic sounds as
typified by the Spanish language. The soul speaks to us in dreams, images and poetry. To know
the truth of oneself is to listen to the poetry of one’s soul with the ears of a person in love with
mere phonation itself. Only then can one conviértete en la verdad de su voz!

Gwendolyn’s Life and Creative Statement

It would be safe to say that my life’s passion has been in the area of vocal expression, whether that be through song, stage performance, or story-telling. Teaching voice over the last 30 years has led me to ask questions concerning the interplay between psyche and voice.

This query, in turn, has persuaded me to deepen and enrich my understanding of human behavior through psychological studies. I now find myself in a crucible where a new interest is being forged—one which transmutes vocal expression into avenues of healing.

In working with voice students I have long been witness to how anxiety, depression and some kind of core wounding evidences itself in the limitations of vocal production and in the changes to the very timbre of the voice itself. I have seen how song and toning can open up a person’s ability to express years of sorrow and hurt, and thereby allow for a more embodied and affect-enriched expression of the soul. This certainly has been the case for me.

I have seen how song and toning can open up a person’s ability to express years of sorrow and hurt

I do not remember a time when I did not sing. Music was so much a part of my early childhood, that I can very nearly trace the health of my psyche with that of my voice. My father was a trombonist–a jazz musician with his own dance band. My mother was a dancer with a great passion for grand opera.

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Old Time Traveling Radio Show

By Evalyn Hansen for The Tidings

Gwendolyn Overland and Doug Warner wrote and directed the “Old Time Traveling Radio Show,” which continues with the Next Stage Repertory Company Friday and Saturday at the Craterian Theater in Medford.

With a doctorate in theater arts and clinical psychology and a master’s degree in music, Overland teaches psychology at Rogue Community College and works as an expressive voice coach. We visited at Boulevard Coffee in Ashland one afternoon.

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