Richard Beene enjoys an active career as a teacher, soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral performer. In 2001, while serving as Professor of Bassoon at the University of Michigan, he was awarded the 2001 Harold Haugh Award for excellence in studio teaching. He has been invited to present master classes and teaching residencies at a number of institutions including the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California, Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, and McGill University among others.
He has also served on the faculties of Michigan State University and Wichita State University. In addition to performing numerous times with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Mr. Beene has appeared with the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. While maintaining his teaching schedule in Michigan, he also held the position of Principal Bassoonist with the Toledo Symphony Orchestra, where he performed many times as a soloist.
Additionally, he has toured Europe as a soloist with the American Sinfonietta and performed as a soloist at the Festival de Musique de St. Barthelemy in the French West Indies. Summer festival engagements have included the Sunflower Music Festival in Kansas, the Basically Bach Festival in Anchorage (Alaska), the Colorado Music Festival, Strings in the Mountains (Colorado), the Arkansas Music Festival, Washington’s Centram Chamber Music Festival, the Bellingham Festival of Music, and the Peninsula Music Festival (Wisconsin). Chamber music and recital engagements have taken him to New York’s Merkin Concert Hall and the Library of Congress in Washington, DC as well as venues throughout Germany, Switzerland, Italy, and Austria. Richard Beene is currently Dean of the Colburn Conservatory of Music, where he also teaches Bassoon and Chamber Music.