Dr. Kathleen Carter Bell is an active educator and performer based in Amarillo, TX. Prior to relocating, Kathleen served as Instructor of Oboe and English Horn at Tennessee State University and as Oboe Lecturer at Auburn University. Kathleen, who is Principal Oboist with the Lubbock Symphony Orchestra, is oboe faculty for Indiana University’s Summer Music Clinic and the West Texas A&M Band and Orchestra Camp, and has taught multiple summers at the Interlochen Center for the Arts. She is also a regular performer with Chamber Music Amarillo, the Amarillo Opera, the Amarillo Symphony, and the West Texas Symphony, among others.
An active performer, Kathleen has given solo and chamber recitals across the United States and abroad. In 2019, she was nominated by the Dean and music faculty to be Indiana University’s first performer in Seoul National University’s Chamber Music Festival. Her trio, Elicio Winds, has been awarded several grants, including two Alabama State Council on the Arts grants, a Draughon Center for the Arts and Humanities collaborative outreach grant, and a SEC Travel Grant to present a chamber recital and masterclass at the University of Arkansas. Convergence: Music and Cultural Legacy, Elicio Winds’ first CD—also the result of a grant—was released in November 2023 on Blue Griffin Records. It is comprised of five works the trio commissioned and reflects the cultural heritage of Alabama, the state where the trio got its start. Recent solo and chamber performances include the National Flute Association Conference (Chicago), the College Music Society National Conference (Rochester and Miami), the International Double Reed Society Conference (Boulder), the International Clarinet Association Conference (Denver), and the Music by Women Festival (Mississippi).
As an educator, Kathleen’s primary teaching goal is to foster independent musicians who have strong convictions about what they want to say musically and the necessary skills to share those ideas in inspiring performances. To this end, she has devised a comprehensive four-year curriculum which focuses on honing fundamentals, an objective approach to reed-making, and informed preparation of repertoire. Students in her collegiate and high school studios have been accepted to top universities and summer festivals. She has given masterclasses and presentations across the country, including for the Alabama Music Educators Association and Nashville Area Music Teacher’s National Association. Kathleen also launched Double Talk Workshop, which informs music educators regarding important double reed resources and strategies. Bell recently published several pedagogical articles in Ala Breve and the Tennessee Musician, the journals of the Alabama and Tennessee Music Educators Associations.
An advocate of new music, Bell has recently collaborated with several female composers, including Althea Talbot-Howard, Alyssa Morris, and Meera Gudipati, to commission and premiere new works for oboe. Bell is fascinated by the interdisciplinary arts and music’s place within the broader context of art and culture. Her final DM document, From Dionysus to Die Walküre: The Ancient Greek Aulos as a Key to Wagner’s Writing for the Oboe and English Horn, was commended by her Indiana University doctoral committee as a “Dissertation of High Distinction.” Kathleen earned her DM, MM and PD degrees from Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music and her BM degree from Baldwin-Wallace Conservatory. In 2012, Kathleen was awarded the 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, as well as traveling, reading, and painting.