Debra Bonner found school difficult until her best friend introduced her to Jesus Christ at the age of thirteen. Debra embraced her worship services and learned to read by singing from the hymnal. Her life totally changed as her mind expanded in knowledge and understanding through the Spirit. Her pastor, Avery Aldridge, choir director, James Peoples, and the Foss Avenue Baptist Church family in Flint, Michigan loved and nurtured Debra. They paid for her voice lessons until she graduated from high school--with honors.
After graduating from the University of Michigan with a Master's Degree in Vocal Performance, Debra married her sweetheart, Harry. Three months later they served a Baptist mission in Liberia, West Africa for nearly two years. Prompted to return to the States, Debra became an inner-city high school choir director for nearly two years, continuing to change lives for good. She then moved west where she spent over 20 years training, and was a close associate of Seth Riggs, the most celebrated singing coach in the pop industry. Seth is the vocal coach for over 120 Grammy Award winners. He taught Michael Jackson, Janet Jackson, Madonna, Tina Turner, Prince, Natalie Cole, Bernadette Peters, Josh Groban, Stevie Wonder and more. Debra spent 9 years with world-renowned vocal expert, Richard Miller, author of "The Structure of Singing," and articles in over 120 professional journals.
Debra has been very blessed to have had these extraordinary experiences. No one else in the world can say that they have trained and been close associates with the two top vocal pedagogues of the 20th Century for over 30 years. Seth said to Debra, "I believe that the Lord sent you to me to teach this method." His technique was later named by Debra Bonner, "Speech Level Singing," which is the foundation of DebraTone. Debra, along with her associates and students, has trained well over one hundred Grammy, Tony, and Opera Award Winners. Debra has performed around the world and has developed her own vocal technique, DebraTone.