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Flutist Tara Helen O’Connor joins YSM faculty 

țara helen o'connor

Photo by Matt Dine

The Yale School of Music is pleased to announce the appointment of flutist Tara Helen O’Connor, who will join the faculty in September as Visiting Associate Professor, Adjunct, of Flute. Ms. O’Connor has been a frequent guest lecturer at Yale and appreciates the legacy of excellent flute pedagogy and performance her predecessor, Professor Ransom Wilson, built over the course of three decades. 

Ms. O’Connor is an Avery Fisher Career Grant recipient and a two-time Grammy Award nominee. She received the Walter W. Naumburg Chamber Music Award as a member of the New Millennium Ensemble and was the first flutist selected to participate in the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Bowers Program. Art Mag has said, “She so embodies perfection on the flute that you'll forget she is human and therefore obliged to breathe at regular intervals for survival.”

A champion of contemporary music, Ms. O’Connor has premiered hundreds of new works. She is a member of the Windscape woodwind quintet and the Bach Aria Group, performed as a substitute in the New York Philharmonic, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, and Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, and has appeared on numerous recordings and film and TV soundtracks. Ms. O’Connor is Artistic Director of the Music from Angel Fire Festival and has performed at such prestigious festivals as the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Music@Menlo, Spoleto Festival USA, and Chamber Music Northwest, Bravo! Vail among others. Ms. O’Connor has collaborated with some of the most revered chamber music artists and ensembles in the world including Jeremy Denk, Peter Serkin, Stephen Prutsman, Eliot Fisk, Jaime Laredo, Dawn Upshaw, Jennifer Johnson Cano, YSM faculty clarinetist David Shifrin, and the Emerson, Orion, and St. Lawrence string quartets.

A sought-after pedagogue, Ms. O’Connor serves on the faculty at the Purchase College Conservatory of Music, Bard College Conservatory of Music, and the Contemporary Performance Program at Manhattan School of Music.   She earned her bachelor-of-arts, master-of-music, and doctor-of-musical-arts degrees at Stony Brook University.  Her principal teachers were Samuel Baron, Thomas Nyfenger (YSM Faculty 1967-1990), Julius Levine, Keith Underwood, Robert Dick, Joan Schwartzman, and Laura Gustavsen.

Please join us in welcoming Tara Helen O’Connor to Yale.