J. Lawrie Bloom

Senior Lecturer, Clarinet


J. Lawrie Bloom

MM, Arizona State University

J. Lawrie Bloom has played solo bass clarinet for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra since 1980. A founding member of the Chicago based chamber group Civitas Ensemble, Bloom also serves as clarinetist and artistic co-director at the Chesapeake Chamber Music Festival and as co-director of the Chesapeake Chamber Music Competition. He is a former member of the Vancouver, Phoenix, and Cincinnati Symphonies and Lyric Opera of Chicago Orchestra.

A versatile player, Bloom has been heard in chamber, orchestral, and concerto appearances on soprano clarinet, basset clarinet, and bass clarinet. He began studying piano at four and switched to the clarinet at nine. He continued studies at the Columbus Boychoir School, with whom he toured the U.S., Canada and Japan, singing and playing the clarinet. At that same time on clarinet he came under the guidance of Roger W. McKinney, later studying with Anthony M. Gigliotti.

Bloom has performed at the Ambler, Grand Teton, Ravinia, Skaneateles and Spoleto festivals, and the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York. He toured with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, and has collaborated with the Chester, Chicago Symphony, and Mendelssohn String Quartets, the Chicago Chamber Musicians, and members of the Ridge, Orion and Vermeer string quartets. He has been heard many times in live concerts over the airwaves of WFMT in Chicago, and in live recital for the Australian Broadcast Company.