Category Archives: Events/Performances

Chicago Clarinet Ensemble and Doreen’s Jazz New Orleans: October 16th, 2015

Doreen Ketchens, the “Queen of Clarinet” from New Orleans is coming to Chicago!

Doreen’s Jazz New Orleans will be featured on the Jewel Box Series at Northeastern Illinois University on October 16th, 2015 at 7:30PM.  Chicago Clarinet Ensemble is completely jazzed about performing Leo Schwartz’s new arrangement of Gershwin’s Summertime with DoreDoreen for Pixoen.  Get your tickets early for this concert because we expect a full house!

Get your tickets HERE.  Use the code “CCE” for a $5 discount!

March 9, 2015: Clarinet Fresh with Diana Haskell

Haskellpic2014Chicago Clarinet Ensemble welcomes Diana Haskell, Associate Principal and Eb Clarinetist with the St. Louis Symphony.  Clarinet Fresh breaks away from CCE’s mainly large ensemble repertory to highlight the ensemble’s chamber commissions as well as newer works for the clarinet.

Ms Haskell will premiere”Dog Days” by Leo Schwartz, a work for clarinet, piano, and baritone which Haskell recently commissioned.   She will also perform Gregory Vadja’s “Lightshadow – Trembling” for unaccompanied clarinet. Chicago Clarinet Ensemble brings back  Eric Mandat’s sextet “Pursuits of Happiness” performed with John Bruce Yeh on Eb clarinet – a part which was specifically written with Yeh in mind – along with Diana Haskell on Bb clarinet, and members of CCE.   Other works on the program include “Let’s Snap” by Jun Yi Chow, commissioned and performed by the Novacane Clarinet Quartet, winners of the Chicago Clarinet Ensemble’s 2014 Clarinet Ensemble Competition.   Join us for this collaboration of clarinet artistry combined with the freshest possible clarinet compositions.

Diana Haskell, clarinet
John Bruce Yeh, clarinet
Kay Kim, piano
Robert Heitzinger, baritone
Chicago Clarinet Ensemble
Novacane Clarinet Quartet

MARCH 9, 2015 7:30PM
Northeastern Illinois University
Recital Hall

Tickets: $10 General Admission


Clarinet Ensemble Competition: October 18th, 2014

Clarinet Ensemble Competition

Informal Frances (P03)

Adjudicated by the Omega Clarinet Quartet

Eligibility:  Small clarinet ensembles ranging from a minimum of
3 to a maximum of 6 players. In lieu of screening recordings, each group must send a short referral/recommendation letter from a teacher or professional reference. Please send the letter, via email, to Dr. Rose Sperrazza, r  Applications may be filled out and submitted on line (see below).

Repertoire:  Original or transcriptions are acceptable.  Please choose repertoire that shows the group at its best within the 8-minute time limit.  Performances that exceed 8 minutes will be disqualified.

Date/Location:  The competition will be held at Northeastern Illinois University, 3701 W. Bryn Mawr Avenue, Chicago, IL  60659. on October 18th, 2014.  The competition will be open to audience members and begins at 3:00PM.  Each group will be notified of acceptance within one week of application submission.

Requirements:  There are no age restrictions.  Groups of all experience levels are welcome but please be advised that letters of recommendation will be strongly considered.  There is a $10 fee per member of each ensemble.  Payment may be in the form of check (Chicago Clarinet Ensemble) or Pay Pal (you will be invoiced after acceptance).  Payment must be made in full within 5 business days of the ensemble’s official acceptance.

Prize:  $1,000.  Taxes are the sole responsibility of the winners.

Adjudicators:  The competition will be judged by the members of the Omega Clarinet Quartet of Brazil.  They will be performing on Friday, October 17th at 7:30PM and we have complimentary tickets for the competition participants that choose to attend.  Interested ensembles should begin by submitting the following form.  Don’t forget to send your recommendation letter via email to:

Transportation and Lodging:  Participants from outside the Chicago area must make their own hotel, transportation and meal arrangements.  Northeastern Illinois University does not have dormitories.  We recommend the Holiday Inn of Skokie, Illinois due to its proximity to the university.  We may be able to arrange a shuttle to and from the competition.  Holiday Inn

View this Announcement in Spanish:  Concurso de clarinetes

May 2, 2014: John Bruce Yeh, Chicago’s Own

John YehThe Chicago Clarinet Ensemble welcomes back clarinet virtuoso JOHN BRUCE YEH.  In 2007, John joined CCE for our very first concert.  Now, on our 7th Anniversary, he takes the stage again to perform this sensational arrangement of the Finale from Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto.  John will also be featured on Eb clarinet in a premiere performance of Invincible Summer, a clarinet quartet composed by CCE’s Composer in Residence and Jeff Award Recipient, Leo Schwartz.  Other repertoire includes the second movement of the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto performed by David Tuttle, alto saxophone; the ever popular Molly on the Shore by Grainger, and more.  Please join us for this exciting and entertaining celebration of music.  A Vandoren-sponsored reception to follow. 

Friday, May 2nd, 2014.  NEIU Auditorium, 3701 W. Bryn Mawr Avenue,  Chicago, IL  60659

Parking Lot F

General Admission:  $10; NEIU students, faculty, and staff: Free
Purchase Tickets HERE


10/26/13: Fifth Annual Chicago Clarinet Collaborations

IMG_1126The fifth annual Chicago Clarinet Collaborations will take place on October 26th, 2013 at at the Salme Steinberg Recital Hall, Northeastern Illinois University (5500 N. St Louis). The 7:30 pm joint performance will feature ensembles from participating universities as well as a performance by the Chicago Clarinet Ensemble (see full schedule below).

Tickets are available online or at the door and $10 admission includes the masterclass and the concert.  Attendance is free for students and faculty of participating universities. Call Rose Sperrazza at (773) 442-5902 to reserve space.

Invited universities include Northeastern Illinois University, Northwestern University, Northern Illinois  University, DePaul University, Roosevelt University, North Central College, Vandercook College, and Elmhurst College.

11:00-1:00  Cadenza Competition and Masterclass with Linda Baker, Cash prize
2:15-3:45: Group Rehearsal with John Bruce Yeh
4:00-5:00 Workshop “Collaborating with a Pianist: Best Practices” with Dr. Kay Kim
7:30pm: CONCERT

This event is partially supported by Vandoren, Inc. and the Department of Music at Northeastern Illinois University.

April 20, 2013: Venezuelan Virtuosity

The Chicago Clarinet Ensemble embraces the music of Latin America with Venuzuelan clarinet virtuoso Jorge Montilla, one of the finest musicians ever produced by Venezuela’s “El Sistema.”  Join us to be transported to Latin America via the syncopations and characteristic rhythms of the culture.  No plane ticket necessary. A Vandoren-sponsored reception to follow. 

Saturday, April 20th, 2013. NEIU Recital Hall, 5500 N Saint Louis Avenue
General Admission:  $15; Students:  $10; NEIU Students: Free
Purchase Tickets HERE.

MASTER CLASS with Jorge Montilla
Saturday, April 20th, 2013
10:00 am, Recital Hall at Northeastern Illinois University

Performance Highlights

August 2012
International Clarinet Association, ClarinetFest 2012
University of Nebraska at Lincoln

April 2012  
Northeastern Illinois University
Guest Artists: Elsa Verdehr, Walter Verdehr, violin

May 2011
Northeastern Illinois University
Guest Artists: Stanley and Naomi Drucker

May 2010
Northeastern Illinois University
Guest Artist: Anthony McGill

April 2010
Iowa Clarinet Day, Central College, Pella Iowa

March 2010
Sounds and Steps of Latin America – Live from Gottlieb Hall, Merit School of America
Collaboration with Ensemble Espagnol Dancers

April 2009
Northeastern Illinois University
Guest Artists: John Hagstrom, trumpet; Steve Cohen

November 2008
Chicago Humanities Festival, Chicago Cultural Center
Guest Artist: John Yeh

October 2008

Vandoren Clarinet Ensemble Festival – Chicago, IL

May 2008
Northeastern Illinois University
Guest Artists: Lawrie Bloom, Charlene Zimmerman

May 2007
Looptopia, Chicago

May 2007
Inaugural Concert – Northeastern Illinois University
Guest Artists:  John Yeh, Larry Combs, Julie DeRoche

Guest Artists Elsa and Walter Verdehr

Saturday, April 21, 2012 at 7:30 p.m.
Chicago Clarinet Ensemble with guest artists Elsa and Walter Verdehr
Featuring James Niblock’s Concerto No. 2 for Violin and Clarinet
Premiere Performance of James Butler’s arrangement for clarinet ensemble and soloists

Master Class with Elsa Verdehr:
Friday, April 20th 3:30PM, Recital Hall FREE EVENT

Northeastern Illinois University
3701 W. Bryn Mawr Avenue Parking Lot F Chicago, IL
for more info e-mail:

Tickets: NEIU BOX OFFICE: 773-442-4636

Third Annual Chicago Clarinet Collaborations

sponsored by NEIU Department of Music, and Vandoren, Inc.

Schedule of Events
All events are held in the Fine Arts Building at Northeastern Illinois University

Orchestral Excerpt Audition and Masterclass with Charlene Zimmerman, principal clarinetist Lyric Opera Orchestra.  Prize: $300


Clarinet Choir Rehearsal
Combined studios rehearse and coach with John Bruce Yeh, Chicago Symphony Orchestra. 


Break for Dinner and/or Small (individual studios)
Clarinet Ensemble rehearsals inthe Auditorium.

CONCERT featuring the individual and combined clarinet studios of participating universities. Performance by the Chicago Clarinet Ensemble.

Vandoren, Inc. and Buffet Crampon will be present during the day.  Try the Buffet line of clarinets and the new Master’s Mouthpieces by Vandoren!
  • Northeastern Illinois University
  • Northwestern University
  • Northern Illinois University
  • DePaul University
  • Roosevelt University
  • North Central University
  • Vandercook College
  • North Park University
  • Southern Illinois University
  • Illinois Wesleyan University
  • Xavier University
  • Wheaton Conservatory of Music
Tickets are available at the door.  $10 admission includes the masterclass and the concert.  Free for students and faculty of participating universities. Call Rose Sperrazza at (773) 442-5902 to reserve space.