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Clarinet studio

We now do online video auditions for long distance applicants. Contact Professor Eller for more information regarding auditions.

Welcome to the USC clarinet studio

The Clarinet Studio at the University of South Carolina is dedicated to teaching the fundamentals of clarinet pedagogy that are consistent with the pedagogy of Daniel Bonade, David Weber and Robert Marcellus. The basis of these fundamentals is clarinet sound.  Students at USC are taught to have the most beautiful, consistent, focused and full sound on the clarinet. The characteristics that are addressed from the start which have a direct effect on sound are embouchure, voicing and air support. Other pedagogical issues that are taught in line with the teachings of these famous clarinetists are articulation, finger technique and ultimately, musical interpretation.   

The USC Clarinet Studio is comprised of approximately 20-25 clarinet students, give or take a few each semester. Of these, roughly 20 are music majors, and the rest are non-majors who participate in the school of music by taking lessons and being a member of one of the auditioned large ensembles. Just over half of the undergraduate majors are music education majors, and many of them also pursue a Performance Certificate, which is USC's version of a double major in education and performance.  About half of the studio members, including graduate students, are straight performance majors. There are usually 3-5 graduate students from across the globe.  The clarinet studio does attract students from around the world, but most are from the southeast and east coast of the United States. In general, about half are from South Carolina. 

All clarinet majors take weekly lessons with the major professor, Joseph Eller, for at least their curriculum-required allotted lesson times.  Non-majors study with the graduate assistant regularly.  

The clarinet studio has a registered organization with the USC Student Government where they can apply for funding to support visits by guest artists, social events and clarinet related travel to events like the International Clarinet Association's annual convention each summer.  Some travel to conventions they have partially supported have been those in 2010 in Austin, TX and in 2013 in Assisi, Italy. Each semester the studio hosts a prominent guest clarinetist who's visit is supported by student government. 

Performance opportunities

Performance opportunities at the University of South Carolina are numerous. There are two concert bands by audition, the Wind Ensemble and the Symphonic Winds. Being the premiere concert band at USC, the Wind Ensemble has had many recent achievements, which include a tour in China, a new CD released on the Naxos Label featuring all Bernstein, and a performance at the closing concert of the 2013 national CBDNA convention, which followed the release of their latest CD of this live performance on Mark Records.  They are also planning to record a new CD for Naxos in the 2014-15 season. The USC Symphony Orchestra program is excellent, featuring many world-renowned soloists and a wide variety of repertoire. They also participate in one opera production per semester and collaborate with USC Dance in the spring semester. The chamber music program at USC is exceptional, featuring students from across all areas of the school. All areas throughout the school are solid, including all string studios and piano, making playing a wide range of mixed chamber music accessible. Most students chose to partake in chamber music for credit, which allowed their groups to be assigned to a faculty coach who worked with them once a week throughout the semester. Additionally, there are performance opportunities through pit groups, new music ensembles, and conducting ensembles.  


Undergraduate application to USC

Graduate application to USC


USC Wind Ensemble

USC Symphony Orchestra

Joseph Eller Faculty homepage

Joseph Eller website with Baroque transcriptions

Upcoming Woodwind Events

Wind Ensemble Concert

Sunday, Sep. 22, 2024

Location: Koger Center Auditorium, See Description for Event Location.

Cost: FREE

USC Symphony Orchestra: The Firebird & The Phoenix

Thursday, Sep. 26, 2024

Location: Koger Center Auditorium, See Description for Event Location.

Cost: General public - $30 Seniors / military / USC faculty and staff - $25 Children under 18 and non-USC students with ID - $8 USC Students - free with student ID

Jessica Pelltier Doctoral Flute Recital

Monday, Sep. 30, 2024

Location: School of Music 206 Recital Hall

Cost: FREE

Symphonic Winds Concert

Sunday, Oct. 6, 2024

Location: Koger Center Auditorium, See Description for Event Location.

Cost: FREE

Steve Cohen Clarinet Guest Recital

Monday, Oct. 7, 2024

Location: School of Music 206 Recital Hall

Cost: FREE

View the Calendar

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