Katherine Needleman joined the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra as principal oboist in 2003, the same year she won first prize at the International Double Reed Society’s Gillet-Fox Competition. As soloist, she has appeared with the Philadelphia, Saint Paul Chamber, Concerto Soloists Chamber, and the Baltimore Chamber orchestras; the Haddonfield Symphony and the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Colombia, in addition to her frequent appearances with the Baltimore Symphony. She has performed as guest principal oboist with the New York Philharmonic, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of Boston, Chicago, Atlanta, San Diego, and New Zealand.
Needleman’s chamber music engagements have taken her to Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall and the Metropolitan Museum in New York; Jordan Hall and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, as well as the Freer Gallery in Washington D.C. She has appeared at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland, Italy’s Spoleto Festival, the Alpenglow Festival, Greenland, and the Newport Music Festival. A participant at the Marlboro Music Festival, she has also appeared on two tours with “Musicians from Marlboro.”
Devoted to contemporary music, Needleman has premiered numerous works and has commissioned works by Luis Prado, Chia-Yu Hsu and David Ludwig. She gave the American premiere of Brenno Blauth’s Concertino. Her debut CD, Duos for Oboe and Piano, was recently released on the GENUIN label with pianist Jennifer Lim.
Needleman attended high school at the Baltimore School for the Arts but left early to attend the Curtis Institute of Music. She is a faculty member at the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University and the Young Artist Summer Program at Curtis SummerFest. She makes her Festival debut in Christopher Rouse’s Oboe Concerto on Opening Night, Friday, August 5.