Rena Feller, clarinet
[B.M., Oberlin College; MM., Julliard]
Rena Feller has been E-flat/Second Clarinetist with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra since 1986. She earned a Bachelor of Music degree at Oberlin College and a Master of Music degree at Juilliard, where she studied with David Weber. From 1991 to 1999 she was principal clarinet with the Berkshire Opera. As a solo recitalist and chamber musician, Ms. Feller has premiered and recorded many contemporary compositions. She maintains an active private teaching studio in Memphis.
Courtenay Harter, oboe/English horn[B.F.A., Carnegie Mellon University; M.M., Northwestern University; Ph.D., University of Connecticut]
Dr. Harter is an active freelance musician in the Mid-South region, including the Delta Chamber Players (MS), Jackson (TN) Symphony Orchestra, and principal oboe with the Germantown (TN) Symphony Orchestra. She has performed the Donizetti Concertino for English horn with the Thayer Symphony Orchestra (MA) and the Rhodes College Orchestra. In February 2006, Dr. Harter performed the Eastern United States premiere of Craig Phillips′ composition for oboe and organ, Night Song, with the composer.
Previous teachers include:
- Carolyn Hove (Principal English horn, Los Angeles Philharmonic)
- Grover Schiltz (former Principal English horn, Chicago Symphony Orchestra)
- Ray Still (former Principal Oboe, Chicago Symphony Orchestra)
- Elden Gatwood (former Principal Oboe, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra)
- Nancy Dimock (Vermont Symphony, Albany Symphony, Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra of Boston)
- Calvin Hampton: Variations on "Amazing Grace" for English horn and organ
- Libby Larsen: Kathleen, As She Was for oboe and harpsichord
- Craig Phillips: Night Song for oboe and organ or harpsichord
- Astor Piazzolla: Histoire du Tango
- Joseph Rheinberger: Andante Pastorale
- Leo Sowerby: Ballade for oboe and organ
- Antonio Vivaldi: Sonata in C minor, RV 53
Dr. Courtenay Harter also teaches music theory and coaches chamber music.
Jennifer Rhodes, bassoon
[B.M., Performance Certificate, Eastman School of Music; M.M., D.M.A., The Julliard School]
Jennifer Rhodes is in her second season as principal bassoonist of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra. She holds Doctor of Musical Arts and Master of Music degrees from the Juilliard School and a Bachelor of Music degree and Performer’s Certificate from Eastman School of Music. Her major teachers are Frank Morelli and John Hunt. Before moving to Memphis, Dr. Rhodes enjoyed a busy freelance career in New York City where she performed with the Brooklyn Philharmonic, New York City Ballet and Opera Orchestras, and the American Ballet Theater Orchestra. An active chamber musician, she has performed with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and the North Country Chamber Players. She recently recorded Jonathan Dawe’s woodwind quintet “Fractal Farm” on the Furious Artisans label and can also be heard playing principal bassoon on Itzhak Perlman’s 1998 EMI recording “Concertos From My Childhood,” accompanied by the Juilliard Orchestra.
Todd Skitch, flute
[B.M, University of Toronto; Licentiate in Music With High Distinction, McGill University]
Canadian flutist Todd Skitch joined the Memphis Symphony in 1997 after completing degrees at the University of Toronto and McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, where he studied flute with Timothy Hutchins, Principal Flute of the Montreal Symphony and Nora Shulman, Principal Flute of the Toronto Symphony. Before Memphis Mr. Skitch performed with Canadian orchestras including the Niagara Symphony, the Kitchener/Waterloo Symphony, the Windsor Symphony and the National Ballet of Canada. A Tanglewood Fellow in 1996, he also attended Kent/Blossom (Maurice Sharp Award for outstanding flute applicant), Spoleto USA, Festival dei due Mondi in Spoleto, Italy, the National Repertory Orchestra, the Sarasota Chamber Music Festival and the Banff Center for the Arts.
Todd is a teacher and chamber music performer. His specialty is preparing young flutists for All West, Youth Symphony and college auditions. He performs with the MSO Woodwind Quartet, the Renaissance Music Circle, the IRIS Orchestra (which he joined in its first season in 2000), the Memphis Chamber Music Society and the Bellingham Festival of Music (since 2008). Mr. Skitch has been heard on CBC Radio-Canada, WKNO Memphis and as a soloist with both the Memphis Symphony and IRIS Orchestra. As a substitute/extra flute he has performed recently with the Atlanta, Minnesota, Vancouver, Virginia and Alabama Symphony Orchestras. Todd’s favorite flute players today are Timothy Hutchins, Christina Smith, Joanna G′Froerer and Emmanuel Pahud and he has performed in masterclasses by flute pedagogues Samuel Baron, Carol Wincenc, Peter Lloyd, William Bennett and Jean-Pierre Rampal.
In 2011, Mr. Skitch joined the faculty at Rhodes College as an Applied Music Instructor and began his first term as Board Chair of the Memphis Youth Symphony Program.
Carl Wolfe, saxophone
Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Mr. Wolfe began his musical career performing with local “Philly” groups and worked as a studio musician. In the spring of 1964 he enlisted in the United States Navy and began as a Navy musician. During his tenure he became a featured soloist with the Navy’s premier jazz ensemble, the “Commodores” in Washington, D.C.
Mr. Wolfe’s post Navy solo career includes performances with Ray charles, Doc Sevrenson, James Williams, Marvin Stamm, Arturo Sandoval and many other jazz artists as well as solo performances with several symphony orchestras including the Memphis Symphony Orchestra.
Mr. Wolfe works as a studio musician, arranger/composer and is co-founder and co-director of the Memphis Jazz Orchestra. They have recorded two CD’s Life on Beale Street (featuring several of his arrangements) and Big Band Dance Party. Mr. Wolfe’s 1997 Jazz CD release Reed Between The Lines received critical acclaim in several media publications including Jazz Times magazine and was nominated for a Grammy.
Also a music historian, he has researched, arranged and authentically re-orchestrated Music Aboard The Titanic, which is featured at the Wonders, Inc. Traveling Titanic Exhibit and W. C. Handy’s Beale Street (Way Down South Where The Blues Began) which recreated Handy’s Beale Street band using the exact instrumentation and style of the period.