The San Francisco Conservatory of Music announces the appointment of two principal artists from the San Francisco Symphony and San Francisco Opera Orchestra to its woodwind faculty. Carey Bell, principal clarinet with the San Francisco Symphony, and Mingjia Liu, principal oboe with the San Francisco Opera, will begin teaching at SFCM in the fall semester of 2016. With these appointments, SFCM students will have the opportunity to study with a faculty that includes 30 members of the San Francisco Symphony, including 17 principal, associate, and assistant principal players, as well as four principals from the San Francisco Opera and San Francisco Ballet orchestras.
"We are thrilled to welcome both Mingjia and Carey to our faculty, building upon strong connections between SFCM, the San Francisco Symphony, and San Francisco Opera," says Provost & Dean Kate Sheeran. "Our students will benefit from the breadth of experience of these artists, who are joining an outstanding roster of woodwind faculty."
Carey Bell has been principal clarinet of the San Francisco Symphony since 2007. He has also held principal positions with the San Francisco Opera Orchestra and the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, and served as acting principal clarinet of the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra and as guest principal clarinet with the Philadelphia Orchestra. An avid performer of chamber and contemporary music, he is a former member of the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players and a founding member of TRIAD, a trio with cellist Emil Miland and pianist Bryndon Hassman. Bell received undergraduate degrees in performance and composition from the University of Michigan, studying with renowned clarinet instructor Fred Ormand and composers William Bolcom, Bright Sheng, Michael Daugherty, and Evan Chambers. He continued graduate work at DePaul University, where he studied with Larry Combs, then principal clarinet of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. As a member of SFCM's clarinet faculty, he joins San Francisco Symphony colleagues Luis Baez, associate principal clarinet, and Jerome Simas, bass clarinet, as well as SFCM alumnus Jeff Anderle '06, co-founder of San Francisco's Switchboard music festival and concert series and the bass clarinet duo Sqwonk.
Mingjia Liu joined the San Francisco Opera as principal oboe in 2010 and has been recognized for his charismatic performances and "singing ability" on the instrument. A native of Qingdao, China, Liu attended the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing as a student of Weidong Wei. He also graduated from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Robert Walters of the Cleveland Orchestra, and Alex Klein, former principal oboe with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. As a fellowship musician at the Aspen Music Festival, he worked closely with Richard Woodhams and Elaine Douvas. He previously served as principal oboe of the Kansas City Symphony and acting principal oboe of the San Francisco Symphony, and has appeared as a guest artist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Los Angeles Philharmonic, among others. Increasingly recognized as a gifted teacher, Liu was invited to give recitals and master classes at the First Beijing International Oboe Festival at the Central Conservatory of Music, and has also taught at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and in SFCM's Pre-College Division. As a member of SFCM's oboe faculty, he joins Russ deLuna, San Francisco Symphony English horn, and SFCM woodwinds chair James Moore.