Lisa Forkish

Lisa Forkish is an award-winning singer-songwriter, arranger, educator and self-described “Love Warrior,” infusing all she creates with fierce authenticity and heart. Based out of Oakland, CA, Lisa has released four solo albums of original music to date, and is currently putting out a new original song on Patreon every month. Her latest record combines her lush, dissonant a cappella arrangements with her honest and soulful songwriting: “Love Warrior EP” is a collection of songs about the triumph of love and the power of the human spirit, and features Lisa’s vocals in layers of expressive harmony.
Since 2011, Lisa has been Vocal Music faculty at Oakland School for the Arts where she is the founder and director of five-time national champion a cappella group, Vocal Rush, also seen on NBC’s “The Sing-Off.” Known for their unique arrangements, soulful performances and commitment to music for social change, Vocal Rush was recently awarded as one of the “YBCA 100” alongside artists and activists Janelle Monae, Rafael Casal and Tarana Burke. Over the course of the past 15 years, Lisa has led six different a cappella groups to place in competitions around the country. She has been a guest instructor and clinician at numerous festivals and universities including SING! Texas, the National A Cappella Convention and the London A Cappella Festival. Lisa is also the recipient of the Mason McDuffie Education Foundation Award for “Outstanding Educator” and the co-founder and Executive Director of the Women’s A Cappella Association. Before beginning her professional career, Lisa’s stint as director of her college a cappella group Divisi was the inspiration for the box office hit film “Pitch Perfect.” Her latest vocal music project HIVE is a group of 5 humans making music with just their voices and some crazy sound effects – all while trying to make the world a better place.
A graduate of Berklee College of Music, Lisa is a prolific arranger, nominated for numerous Contemporary A Cappella Recording Awards and commissioned works for a cappella and choral ensembles all over the country, including the Oakland Symphony Chorus. She has taken the stage at such world-renowned venues as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and SF Jazz Center, and her arranging and musical directing work has been showcased with Alice Russell, Ben Harper, Pentatonix and Delta Rae.
Combining music and social justice, Lisa founded and chaired Musicians Against Sexual Violence, for which she received a Berklee Urban Service Award, and led the community in their first ever “Take Back the Night” rally in 2010. She continues to use her songwriting, performing and teaching as a vehicle for social change, and believes in the power of music to transform, uplift, empower and build connection.

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