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Cello Chat with Host Dr. Benjamin Whitcomb and guest Dr. Karla Hamelin

About the Episode 

This week I chat with Dr. Karla Hamelin, professor, and cellist extraordinaire at Texas State University. She has taught masterclasses throughout North America and is giving some great advice on skill sets with the cello.

Meet the Guest

A vibrant musician and innovative educator, Karla Hamelin is equally dedicated to performing and teaching. An accomplished performer, Karla enjoys an active career as a solo and chamber music performer. Dr. Hamelin is a frequent recitalist that appears regularly as a collaborative artist on many chamber music series and events. Karla has also worked with numerous artists in other disciplines including composers, dancers, choreographers, visual artists, narrators, authors, actors and internationally renowned bands in the SXSW music festival as well as studio musicians. Her ability to play a broad and diverse spectrum of repertoire has made her in demand as a performer of new works, a sought after chamber musician as well as a featured performer in a Baroque cantata series. Recent international performances include Budapest, Vienna and Prague as well as Monterrey and Saltillo, Mexico. Karla has volunteered extensively with non-profit organizations and collaborated on events benefitting associations as diverse as Please be Kind to Cyclists, Hope Arts, Symphony of the Soul, and Wheelchairs for Iraqi Kids. An advocate of new music, Dr. Hamelin has performed with contemporary music ensembles as such as the American Repertory Ensemble, Audio Inversions, and several other new music series. Having had the opportunity to have been a part of several new music performances, premieres, and commissions; Dr. Hamelin has been able to work closely with and alongside notable composers such as Jennifer Higdon, Joan Tower, Jake Heggie, Donald Grantham, Joseph Turrin, and Diana McIntosh. Most recently, in collaboration with her Texas State University colleague Dr. Ames Asbell (viola), they commissioned and recorded two works written specifically for them featuring the compositions of Dr. Karen Sunabacka (Canada) and Hilda Paredes (Mexico). The complete album Ripples, exclusively features the music of living women composers. The album will be released in fall of 2020. On faculty at Texas State University since 2011, Karla is equally dedicated to performing and pedagogy, as she is a popular clinician and guest lecturer. She has quickly established herself as a passionate and effective teacher whose students have been prize winners in state and national competitions and has had many former students accepted and study at notable music programs such as The University of Michigan, Ohio State University, Rice University, The Boston Conservatory, DePaul University, The University of Toronto, The University of Houston, Oberlin Conservatory and The University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Hamelin received her Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Texas at Austin, a Masters in Music from The University of Michigan and Bachelor of Music degree from The University of Manitoba. Karla has spent summers studying at The Banff Center for the Arts, The Aspen Music Festival, Aria Music Festival, The Johannesen School of the Arts, International String Seminar in Graz, Austria and the Texas Music Festival. Her master class participation includes Ron Leonard, Aldo Parisot, Janos Starker, Tsyoshi Tsutsumi, Shauna Rolston, Zara Nelsova, Emilio Colon, Norman Fischer, and the Miro Quartet. In her spare time, Karla enjoys running the many scenic and hilly trails of Austin and Central Texas where she trains for full and half marathons.

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