Faculty by Area

Christopher Kirkpatrick

Associate Professor of Clarinet and Music History


Personal Summary

Christopher Kirkpatrick is Associate Professor of Music at the University of Montana where he teaches clarinet and music history.  He has performed and taught throughout the US, Canada, Europe, Taiwan and South Korea.  Currently principal clarinet of the Missoula Symphony and the Big Sky Festival Orchestra, he has also performed with the Detroit Symphony, Lansing Symphony, West Michigan Symphony, Brevard Music Center Orchestra, New Mexico Symphony Orchestra and the Santa Fe Symphony.  Dr. Kirkpatrick has been an adjudicator for the International Clarinet Association’s Young Artist Competition, the Music Teachers National Association, and throughout the US.  

Dr. Kirkpatrick has been a guest artist and lecturer at numerous conferences, including the International Clarinet Association’s Clarinetfest®, North American Saxophone Alliance Conference, International Double Reed Society Conference, River City Winter Clarinet Festival, College Music Society Conference, the Brandon University Clarinet Festival, World Bass Clarinet Congress, and the Montana/Idaho Clarinet Festival.  During the summers he is on the faculty of the International Music Camp in Manitoba, Canada.   

As a member of Duo Nyans, he is dedicated to commissioning and premiering new works and performing the standard repertoire for clarinet and saxophone. The duo has been invited to perform at numerous conferences and universities and recently toured throughout Sweden and Taiwan. They released their debut album in 2018.

An avid enthusiast of new music, recent commissions include works by James Stephenson, Emilie LeBel, Christopher Stark, Simon Hutchinson, Evan Chambers, James David and David Biedenbender.  Dr. Kirkpatrick also serves as the Montana state chair of the International Clarinet Association.  

Christopher Kirkpatrick earned his Doctorate in Clarinet Performance from Michigan State University, a Master of Music from the University of New Mexico and his Bachelor of Music from the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga.  His teachers have included Elsa Ludewig-Verdehr, Keith Lemmons, Steve Cohen, Ted Gurch, Nikolasa Tejero and Peter Temko. He is a Buffet Crampon Artist and Silverstein Pro Team Artist.



Doctor of Musical Arts in Clarinet Performance (2011)

              Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

Master of Music in Clarinet Performance (2003)

            The University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM

Bachelor of Music in Clarinet Performance (2000)

            University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Chattanooga, TN

Courses Taught

Applied Clarinet Lessons (100-500 levels)

Clarinet Choir

Clarinet Pedagogy

Woodwind Methods (clarinet portion)

20th Century Music

20th Century Chamber Music

The Symphony Orchestra

The Life and Works of Stravinsky


Aural Perception I, II


Teaching Experience

Assistant Professor of Clarinet, The University of Montana, Missoula, MT (2009-present)

Duties include teaching all graduate and all undergraduate applied clarinet students, studio class, repertoire class, pedagogy class, clarinet choir, chamber music coaching, and clarinet pedagogy class for the general B.M.E. students. Twentieth Century Music History, Modern Chamber Music, Orchestration, and Aural Perception I and II.  Recruiting and university summer band camp.

Adjunct Instructor of Clarinet, Albion College, Albion, MI (2006-2009)

Duties included teaching all applied clarinet students, studio class, and chamber music coaching.  Recruiting.

Artist Faculty, International Music Camp, International Peace Gardens, (2012-present)

Duties include teaching middle and high school applied clarinet, chamber music coaching, masterclasses, and a music fundamentals course.  Duties also involve performing in faculty chamber ensembles and faculty orchestra and wind ensemble.

Teaching Assistant, Brevard Music Festival, Brevard, NC (2004)

Duties included teaching applied clarinet, coaching sectionals, coaching chamber music, and assisting the clarinet faculty.

Faculty, Chamber Music Albuquerque, Albuquerque, NM (2003-2004)

Duties included teaching clarinet lessons and coaching chamber music.

Graduate Teaching Assistant, The University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM (2002)

Duties included teaching clarinet pedagogy class for the general B.M.E. students and assisting with the clarinet studio.

Private Studio (2000-present)

Private studio has included outstanding young clarinetists from Tennessee, New Mexico, Michigan, and Montana.  These students are often selected for All-State ensembles and go on to study clarinet in prestigious music programs across the country.

Master Classes

Chungnam National University, Daejeon, South Korea (June 2014)

Dong-a University, Busan, South Korea (June 2014)

University of Tennessee, Chattanooga, Chattanooga, TN (October 2013)

University of North Alabama, Florence, AL (October 2013)

Great Falls Clarinet Day, Great Falls, MT (May 2013, May 2014)

Brandon University, Brandon, Manitoba, Canada (April, 2011)

The University of Southern Mississippi, Hattiesburg, MS (February, 2010)

Southeastern Louisiana University, Hammond, LA (February, 2010)

The University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM (April, 2007)


River City Clarinet Winter Festival, Extended Techniques for Clarinet, The University of Tennessee, Chattanooga, TN (2015)

University of Montana All-Stars Honor Band, Demystifying Clarinet Embouchure: A Guide for High School Band Directors, The University of Montana, Missoula, MT (2013)

Montana/Idaho Clarinet Festival, Pedagogical Materials for Bass Clarinet, The University of Montana, Missoula, MT (October, 2011)

Brandon University International Clarinet Festival, BASSics and More, Brandon University, Brandon, Manitoba, Canada (April, 2011)

Research Interests

Bass Clarinet Literature and Pedagogy

Clarinet and Saxophone Repertoire


Recording project with Duo Nyans in 2015


Field of Study

Clarinet Performance

Clarinet Pedagogy

Chamber Music

Orchestral Literature

Music History



Dissertation: "An Annotated Guide to Pedagogical Materials for the Bass Clarinet," 2011.


International Clarinet Association, Montana State Chair

National Association for Music Educators