Cristin Mortenson Tillinghast

Adjunct Voice Faculty

Cristin Mortenson Tillinghast, soprano, from Los Angeles, California earned her Bachelor of Music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in Opera when, at the age of 22, she began performing the role of Christine Daae in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera. A role she played for over three years. Cristin is delighted to teach in a University setting after enjoying a rich and varied 32-year career that includes opera, musical theatre, film, recital, and television.

Cristin began her career at the age of 6 with voice-over work in Flowers for Algernon at the Los Angeles Music Center. She moved from voice-over to performing on stage, in commercials, after school specials and films while attending summer sessions at The Idyllwild School of Music and the Arts. Before graduating from the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, in her junior year, she was awarded a scholarship to sing in Europe with the College of the Desert vocal ensemble as the only non-collegiate member. In her senior year, she was the first winner of the prestigious Winterfest Spotlight Award at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion – Los Angeles Music Center, under the direction of Doc Severinson and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. She then appeared, (perform/interview), on The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson to celebrate her win.

In New York, Ms. Mortenson Tillinghast made her Broadway debut in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s By Jeeves working with Alan Ayckbourn, (dir.) She also had the privilege of working directly with Tony Award-winning composer Cy Coleman, and choreographer Patricia Birch, on his last work entitled Lawyers, Lovers, and Lunatics. She worked steadily performing such roles as Laurey in Oklahoma starring opposite Rue McClanahan (Golden Girls), Cinderella in Cinderella (The North Carolina Theatre), Tracy Samantha Lord in High Society, (Westminster Broadway Theatre), Sandy in Grease, (Westminster Broadway Theatre), Cinderella Into the Woods (Lucille Lortel Theatre, NY for BC/EFA), Hope Harcourt in Anything Goes w/Ron Palillo (directed by Bob Durkin), Nellie Forbush in South Pacific, Miss Anna in The King and I, (Thomaston Opera House), Margy in State Fair, (Candlewood Playhouse/Gateway Playhouse), Martha Jefferson in 1776, (Gateway Playhouse), where the New York Times called Ms. Mortenson Tillingast; “…gorgeous and to die for.”, Miss Dorothy in Thoroughly Modern Millie, (Patchogue Theatre), where again the New York Times praised her work; “Miss Dorothy, the rich innocent, is irresistible.”, and her first four productions of Maria in The Sound of Music…to name a few.

She reconnected with some of her Phantom castmates as a soloist on three separate occasions with the Adrian Symphony Orchestra with John Dodson – Artistic Director. She also reconnected with choreographer Patricia Birch and was asked to join the cast of The Stepford Wives, (director Frank Oz), and returned several times to work on All My Children, (New York City) Passions, (Los Angeles), and The Bold and the Beautiful, (Los Angeles), in recurring roles, and a co-star role in Boston Legal. Dividing her time between both coasts, she worked in the TV/film industry in Los Angeles. She was the Simmons Beautyrest National/International Spokeswoman, (TV, print, billboard), from 2006-2011, and starred in many national and international commercials.

In 2002 Ms. Mortenson Tillinghast began taking on private voice students, and her studio grew from there, teaching in New York from 2002-2009. In 2006 she opened two Private Voice Studios in Hollywood, and Thousand Oaks, California. In 2008, she decided to retire but finished out her performing career with the role of Maria in The Sound of Music, (Sacramento Music Circus) one last time. The Sacramento News and Review said of her performance; “…the incredible voice, particularly Cristin Mortenson, is worthy of undivided attention. Mortenson’s artistry shines through. She’s believable as a naïve girl with a spine of steel, and her interactions with the children are natural and funny, and she hasn’t got much to do but sing – so she does, and extremely well.” In 2009 she received the honorary award of Outstanding Alumni from the College of the Desert for her contribution to the world of performing. That same year, she met and married her husband, Jason, and moved to Connecticut where she opened the CMT Voice Studio. While teaching in Connecticut, she was also a Guest Artist Teacher at the Pomperaug High School. Later, while living in Seattle, Ms. Mortenson was a Guest Instructor at Cornish College of the Arts. The success of her students has led them to attend musical theatre and opera programs such as NYU Tisch, NYU Steinhardt, Syracuse University, University of Connecticut, Columbia, Penn State, UCLA, The University of Utah, and many others.

Ms. Mortenson Tillinghast is currently finishing her Master's Degree in the Arts – Theatre Direction, and is a 6x Ironman Finisher, a 5x marathon finisher, and resides in Utah with her husband, Jason.


Contact Info

  • Office: PMT