Whether in lessons, reed-making sessions, or masterclasses, Dr. Kathleen Carter Bell—Auburn's Lecturer in Oboe and English Horn—equips students to become vibrant musicians and their own best teachers. Her systematic approach to the oboe studio’s curriculum focuses on enabling students to convey their musical ideas effectively through study of the major oboe repertoire, orchestral excerpts, reed-making, and audition techniques.  


Kathleen also has a great passion for performing. She has played with orchestras across the Midwest and South and at summer music festivals including Brevard, Banff, Masterworks, and Credo. In 2019 Kathleen represented Indiana University at Seoul National University's Winter Chamber Music Festival. Her chamber ensemble, the Elicio Winds, comprised of Auburn University faculty, recently received an Alabama State Council on the Arts grant to commission works for an under-represented chamber ensemble, the woodwind trio. Kathleen is also a founding member of Aether, a reed quintet based in Bloomington, Indiana which is dedicated to performing new works and creative arrangements of old favorites.  

Kathleen received her Doctor of Music degree in Oboe Performance from Indiana University, where she studied with Linda Strommen and Roger Roe. She received her Masters and a Performer Diploma in Oboe Performance from IU, and her Bachelor of Music degree from Baldwin-Wallace Conservatory, with Jeffrey Rathbun of the Cleveland Orchestra. In addition to teaching oboe at AU and maintaining a private studio, Kathleen serves as oboe instructor for the IU Summer Music Clinic. Fascinated by the interdisciplinary arts and music’s place within the broader context of art and culture, her current research interests include how the ancient Greek aulos influenced Wagner’s use of the oboe in his operas. Kathleen was one of six graduate recipients of IU’s 2012 Barbara and David H. Jacobs Fellowship, granted for “excellence and leadership in the world of music.” 


When not playing the oboe, Kathleen enjoys spending time with her husband, bassoonist Conor Bell, traveling, reading and painting.