BASSOON TEACHERS & PROFESSORS
Finding the ideal bassoon teacher can be a challenge because the instrument is so unique. Below is a list of music professors and teachers who have a strong reputation for teaching aspiring bassoonists across a variety of ages. Some of them are renown performing artists.
Considered one of the most famous bassoonists in America, Judith LeClair has taught many talented students at Juilliard since and the Manhattan School of Music since the 1980s. She has given master classes at the Eastman School of Music, Northwestern University, New England Conservatory, Oberlin College, Michigan and Ohio Universities, and the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Christopher Millard is distinguished teacher, serving on the faculty of University of Ottawa, UBC, and Northwestern University. For 20 years he was the bassoon professor for the National Youth Orchestra, where he helped nurture a new generation of Canadian wind players. His students now occupy numerous positions in American and Canadian orchestras. He currently teaches masterclasses worldwide.
Benjamin Kamins is a certified teacher of the Alexander Technique and teaches Alexander Technique classes with his wife, Janet Rarick, at Rice University, and as well as private lessons at the Rice University Recreation Center.
He spends his summers teaching and performing throughout the U.S. He currently is on the faculty of the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, California, a program that pairs a highly regarded teaching program with a varied array of faculty and guest artist performances.
Netherlands, Germany & Spain
Gustavo Núñez, principal bassoon with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, is considered one of the best bassoonists of his generation. He is a professor at the Robert Schumann Academy in Düsseldorf and the Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofía in Madrid, and a world renown masterclass instructor.
An avid educator, Kuuskmann regularly gives masterclasses in worldwide festivals and universities. He has taught at the Manhattan School of Music Contemporary Performance Program in New York City, and is now the Professor of Bassoon at the University of Denver, Lamont School of Music.
NADINA MACKIE JACKSON
Based in Ontario, Canada, Nadina is the founder of the non-profit organization Council of Canadian Bassoonists, and currently teaches bassoon at the University of Toronto and the Glenn Gould Professional School of the Royal Conservatory in Toronto, as well as online.
Awarded the Presidential Scholar Teacher Recognition Award from the United States Secretary of Education, he has taught at Michigan State University, the Interlochen Arts Camp, the Interlochen Arts Academy, the Brevard Music Center and the University of Akron. His former students occupy prominent positions in orchestras and universities.
As a passionate teacher, he gives masterclasses throughout Europe, Asia, North and South America. In addition, he is appointed as a juror for competitions such as the Deutscher Musikwettbewerb, Deutscher Hochschulwettbewerb and Muri Competition and is on the committee of the renowned "Kyoto Prize", the Japanese equivalent of the Nobel Prize.
George Sakakeeny is professor of bassoon at the Eastman School of Music, and has taught guest master classes at the Paris Conservatory, Rice University, Tokyo University, the Juilliard School, and held long term residencies at the Shanghai Conservatory, the Central Conservatory, Seoul National University, and the Conservatoire National Supèrieur de Musique et Danse of Lyon, France.
Photo credit: Matt Dine
Yoshiyuki Ishikawa is the Professor of Bassoon and the Chair of the Woodwind Area at the University of Colorado Boulder, College of Music. He has performed and presented solo recitals, masterclasses and workshops at prestigious conservatories, schools of music, and festivals in North America, Eastern and Southeast Asia, Europe and Oceania.
Based in NY, Rebekah has given lectures and masterclasses at many institutions, teaching students in many different types of programs. Rebekah joined the faculty of the College of Performing Arts (CoPA) and The Mannes School of Music at The New School in the fall of 2019. She leads a bassoon studio, and teaches classes in creative producing and socially engaged artistry at both the graduate and undergraduate levels.
Strongly committed to teaching, Dr. Sweger is in demand as a clinician and guest teacher at colleges and universities and at summer festivals and camps. His students have received many honors and are playing in orchestras and teaching in universities, colleges and public schools around the country.
Currently Assistant Professor at the Schulich School of Music of McGill University, Mr Lévesque was the recipient of the 2011-12 Schulich School of Music Teaching Award. Mr. Lévesque has given master classes in numerous music institutions throughout the world. His former students have won positions in orchestras and music institutions in Canada, Australia, Finland, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Sweden, and the USA.
A dedicated teacher, William serves on the faculties of The Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, and Temple University, as well as the Verbier Festival and Interlochen Arts Camp. He has presented classes at colleges and conservatories around the country and at conferences of the International Double Reed Society, for which he serves as an officer.
Photo credit: Jose Franch-Ballester
Sao Paulo, Brazil
As soloist, chamber musician and professor, Fabio Cury has performed and taught at all of the most important Brazilian music festivals. Outside of Brazil, Fábio has dedicated himself to promoting Brazilian repertory, giving lectures and courses and performing as a soloist in Argentina, Panama, Canada and England.
Whitney Crockett has served on the faculties of the Juilliard and Manhattan schools of music (1998–2009), as well as McGill University in Montreal (1992–1998). He has given master classes at numerous institutions, including the Domaine Forget in Québec, the Curtis Institute, the Colburn School, the Puerto Rico Conservatory and many universities. He began his tenure with the faculty of Lynn University in the fall of 2020.
Jaakko Luoma became member of the Tapiola Sinfonietta already at the age of 20 in 1993. During the years 1996–98 he served as solo bassoonist of Orchestre de Paris. Between 2001 and 2003 he also served as solo bassoonist of Rundfunk- Sinfonieorchester Berlin. Today, he is the principal bassoonist of Tapiola Sinfonietta. He teaches bassoon playing at the Sibelius Academy.
Greensboro, North Carolina
A Professor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, he has been associated with festivals including the Clazz International Music Festival (Tuscany, Italy), Eastern Music Festival, The Summer Bassoon Extravaganza, New England Music Camp and the Bocal Majority and Operation O.B.O.E.
With 11 years of bassoon experience, Elaina has been teaching private lessons since her senior year in high school, managing a studio of up to 17 bassoonists from central Texas. After she obtains her master’s degree, she hopes to become a bassoon professor and write her own curriculum of a standardized method of teaching beginner bassoonist.
OTHER UNIQUE INSTRUMENTS
Sometimes it can be difficult to find the right music teacher, particularly for instruments that are unique. Below are talented teachers who are currently teaching and helping young musicians with other unique instruments.