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Introducing Artist VIP

Margaret Thornhill  -  Renowned Clarinetist and Professor at Concordia College in California and Director of the Los Angeles Clarinet Choir


Margaret Thornhill has performed as a soloist in the United States and Europe, making her New York recital debut at Merkin Hall in 1982 and her UK debut at St. Martin-in-the-Fields in 1991. Critics have raved about her performances of the Mozart Concerto, K. 622 as being "music of incomparable grace and almost unbearable poignance. Thornhill's performance was as loveable as Mozart was loving" (Peninsula Times-Tribune), of the Stravinsky Three Pieces as "Thornhill's musicality, technique, and control are extraordinary"(Palo Alto Times.) John Rockwell, former lead music critic of the New York Times, called her performances of Rorem, Brahms, Levy and Berg a recital "nicely planned and nicely played."

Margaret was for ten years founder/director and clarinetist with the Matrix Chamber Ensemble, a Los Angeles-based 20th century group which won numerous local, state and national grants and awards, was selected for the touring roster of the California Arts Council, and performed for Community Concerts. She collaborates as a chamber musician with Los Angeles Philharmonic, recording studio and LA Opera principals, and is a member of "Category V", a woodwind quintet with oboist David Kossoff, bassoonist John Campbell, hornist Nathan Campbell, and flutist Julie Long. She performs as a duo with pianist Twyla Meyer, and her first solo CD album will be released in 2009 on the Arundo label.

On historical clarinets, she has performed and recorded for Centaur records with the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival, with the Los Angeles Baroque Orchestra at the Getty Museum, and with the chamber groups Divertimento and Clarion.

Margaret writes a column about clarinet choir literature for THE CLARINET, the journal of the International Clarinet Association, and contributes articles on clarinet technique and pedagogy for British Clarinet and Saxophone and Australian Clarinet and Saxophone. In July of 2007, the Los Angeles Clarinet Choir, a 14 member community group she founded and conducts, was the featured clarinet choir at the International Clarinet Association Clarinetfest in Vancouver, Canada. A native of California, Margaret holds degrees from the University of California and Stanford University, where she earned a DMA in performance practice. Her principal teacher was the legendary Rosario Mazzeo, with whom she studied for nine years and was his assistant for two. She has also studied with Leon Russianoff, of the Juilliard School, with David Breeden, late principal of the San Francisco Symphony, and Colin Lawson, head of the Royal College of Music.

A former member of the faculty of UCSC and Stanford University, Margaret was for five years professor of instrumental music at Occidental College, and is Adjunct Professor of Clarinet at Concordia University, Irvine. She coaches chamber music for CMNC (SF Bay Area) and the Chamber Music Society of Santa Barbara, and in the past for the San Diego Chamber Music Workshop and the Cabrillo Summer Academy. In 2006, she founded the the Claremont Clarinet Festival, where she is the master teacher in a summer workshop for advanced adult players in residence at Pomona College the first week of June. She also conducts master classes throughout California.

Margaret currently has a flourishing private studio in Los Angeles where her advanced students typically describe her teaching as "transforming."


























New Information Under development 

Message from Margaret Thornhill


Agendas and Performance and Teaching Philosophy


Upcoming Events and Workshops 




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Revised: January 13, 2019