Instruments: Piano, clarinet, bass clarinet, oboe, bassoon, saxophone, flute,
Students: Beginning to advanced
Preferred pronouns: he/him
Sean Barker was born and raised in Spokane, WA, where he began piano lessons at the age of 8 and clarinet at age 10, working with a number of fine teachers in the Spokane area, including Mary Wilson, Debra Greagor-O’dell, Mary Simpson and Margie May Ott on piano and Carol Kowzan on clarinet, and performing with the Spokane Youth Symphony as Principle Clarinet. Sean holds undergraduate degrees in Piano Performance and Clarinet Performance from the University of Montana, class of 2002, where he studied with Dr. Jody Graves on piano and Dr. Maxine Ramey on clarinet.
In 2002 Sean began work as a music teacher and free-lance musician in Seattle, WA, where he ran a successful teaching studio, seeing over 40 students each week. An active performer, he worked regularly with local orchestras and collaborated with other musicians on various projects, including an annual Mostly Mozart concert held in the courtyard of his apartment building. While in Seattle Sean studied piano with Dr. Peter Mack of Cornish College of the Arts.
In 2008 Sean returned to the University of Montana to pursue a Masters Degree in Music, where he also served as a Graduate Teaching Assistant. For the 2008-2009 school year he was awarded the UofM Graduate Assistant Teaching Award for excellence in teaching, awarded to only one graduate student each year at the University.
From 2010 to 2018, Sean lived in Berlin, Germany, where he taught private students, co-chaired a musical theater department at Die Etage Performing Arts School, and his alto ego, “Shomo the Bearded”, was the karaoke pianist extraordinaire at Monster Ronson’s Ichiban Karaoke. He worked primarily with singers in Berlin, performing unique weekly programs at Sally Bowles Art Café. In 2016 Sean also premiered his first major composition, a song cycle setting of Wallace Stevens’ poems “13 Ways of Looking at a Blackbird”, sung by soprano Danielle Simpson.
In the Summer of 2018 Sean returned to Seattle where he is rebuilding a teaching studio and is looking forward to working with local musicians as both a pianist and clarinetist.