Vivian Robles Dettbarn-Slaughter, D.S.M.

Dr. Vivian Robles Dettbarn-Slaughter
D.S.M. (Graduate Theological Foundation)
M.A. (Appalachian State University, Boone, North Carolina)
B.A. (University of California, Santa Barbara)
Fellow and Professor of Sacred Music, Graduate Theological Foundation
Dr.Vivian Robles Dettbarn-Slaughter was active in music ministry during a span of 30 years. She is now Professor of Sacred Music and Fellow of the Graduate Theological Foundation.  She began her musical education in classical voice and collaborative piano at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, California. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in piano performance from the University of California at Santa Barbara, a Master’s degree in music education with a voice emphasis from the Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina, and a Doctor of Sacred Music degree from the Graduate Theological Foundation. She also studied in the Doctor of Musical Arts program at the University of Memphis, Tennessee, with a major in vocal performance and a minor in music history. 
Dr. Dettbarn-Slaughter was on the faculty at the University of Findlay, in Findlay, Ohio, for fifteen years. During that time, she taught applied voice, piano, and music history, and was a recipient of the Elizabeth Gupta Award for Excellence in Teaching in the Fine Arts. Prior to that, she was on the faculty of the music department at Adrian College in Adrian, Michigan, where she taught applied voice, music history, honors courses, opera workshop and musical theatre for eleven years (music department chair for six years). While earning her Master’s degree, Dr. Dettbarn-Slaughter taught courses at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina, where she was assistant director of the Appalachian Chorale. While pursuing doctoral studies at the University of Memphis, she worked for the university Opera Theatre as a vocal coach, and taught applied music and music history.
Dr. Dettbarn-Slaughter was the Director of Music Ministries, organist and bell choir director at the Adrian Dominican Sisters Motherhouse, and organist and youth music director at the First Presbyterian Church in Adrian, MI. She also served Catholic, Adventist, Presbyterian, Episcopalian and Hindu congregations in California, Tennessee and North Carolina in various roles as soprano soloist, assistant choral director, organist and pianist. She has performed as a singer, chamber musician and pianist with orchestras and opera companies in the U.S., and has performed in recital in the U.S., Canada and Europe. She has also sung as an Artist-in-Residence with the Toledo Opera in Ohio.
She is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing, the National Academic Advising Association, The National Association of Schools of Music, the College Music Society, Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society, and Sigma Alpha Iota National Women’s Music Fraternity. She is a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church, and is the owner and vocal instructor at Lake Arts Studio. Dr. Dettbarn-Slaughter is the author of The Vocalist’s Toolbox, A Portable Workshop for Singers, and her choral music is published by Alliance Publications, Inc. 

Religious Affiliation
  • Ecumenical
General Areas of Interests
  • Liturgy
  • Worship
  • Music
Specialized Areas
  • Music


  • National Academic Advising Association, NACADA
Areas of Service
Faculty Contact