Cohort? Mastermind? Both?

I always thought cohort was a singular word. Like partner, or companion.

Likewise, I always thought mastermind was singular, and was usually preceded by the adjective “criminal.” I thought it was a synonym for “evil genius.”

As I delve deeper into the business world as a solopreneur (another word I didn’t even know existed), I find that these are words relating to groups. Here’s one definition of “cohort.”

a group of people who share a common characteristic over a certain period of time.


And while the conventional definition of mastermind is still something akin to that of “evil genius,” the concept of a mastermind group is a new development and is explained as offering the following:

“a combination of brainstorming, education, peer accountability and support in a group setting to sharpen your business and personal skills. A mastermind group helps you and your mastermind group members achieve success. Members challenge each other to set strong goals, and more importantly, to accomplish them.


So your class at school is a cohort. You and your fellow studio members are a cohort.

If you are working together on a project, or a recital or program of some kind, you are in a type of mastermind group.

One of my new studio options is the MVP Program, which stands for Musically Vibrant Performer. While all my students are MVPs, this particular program is for students who are planning on a performance career, and who want to work toward that goal. In that respect, they are in a mastermind group. The entire studio is a cohort, but the MVPs are part of a mastermind group and have access to studio classes, coworking sessions, and other offerings that may come up from time to time.

I am the evil genius mastermind group facilitator for the MVPs, and for any other full studio events that come up that require collaboration and accountability. Which goes along with my self-definition of myself as “inspirer and facilitator” rather than merely “voice teacher,” a term I got from a long-ago failed TV show called Eastwick, which I wrote about here.

So if you aren’t sure whether you’re in a cohort or a mastermind group, well….

Why not both WhyNotBothgif GIF

The main thing about these two terms is the sense of community, which is one of MVS’ most important values. If that’s one of your values as well, contact MVS to find out how you can be a part of a community, a cohort, and a mastermind.
Set up a Vocal Discovery call to find out if this is the right place for you.

Published by Mezzoid Voice Studio

Christine Thomas-O'Meally, a mezzo soprano and voice teacher currently based in the Baltimore-DC area, has performed everything from the motets of J.S. Bach to the melodies of Irving Berlin to the minimalism of Philip Glass. As an opera singer and actress, she has appeared with companies such as Charm City Players, Spotlighters Theatre, Chicago Opera Theater, Opera Theater of Northern Virginia, Opera North, the Washington Savoyards, In Tandem Theatre, Windfall Theater, The Young Victorian Theater of Baltimore, and Skylight Opera Theatre. She created the role of The Woman in Red in Dominick Argento’s Dream of Valentino in its world premiere with the Washington Opera and Mary Pickersgill in O'er the Ramparts at its world premiere during the Bicentennial of Battle of Baltimore at the Community College of Baltimore County. Other roles include Mrs. Paroo in Music Man, Mother Abbess in Sound of Music, Dorabella in Cosi Fan Tutte, Marcellina in Le Nozze di Figaro, both Hansel and the Witch in Hansel & Gretel, and many roles in Gilbert & Sullivan operettas. Her performance as the Housekeeper in Man of La Mancha was honored with a WATCH award nomination. Ms. Thomas-O'Meally received an M.M. in vocal performance from the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore. She regularly attends master classes and workshops in both performance and vocal pedagogy, and is certified in all three Levels of Somatic Voicework™ The LoVetri Method. Her students have performed on national and international tours of Broadway productions, at prestigious conservatories, and in regional theater throughout the country.

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