Jack Howell

Principal Bass Clarinet

Mr. and Mrs. Willard J. Tillotson, Jr. Chair


A graduate of the University of Northern Colorado, Jack Howell served as principal clarinet of the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra, performing with the Santa Fe Opera and the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival as well before joining the Pittsburgh Symphony for two one-year stints in 1996-1998. After spending the following season as associate principal clarinet of the New Zealand Symphony, he returned to Pittsburgh, where he married Principal Piccolo Rhian Kenny and embarked on the raising of a family and the pursuit of a freelance career.  He served as principal clarinet of the Wheeling (WV) Symphony and second clarinet of the Pittsburgh Ballet and Opera Orchestras, and generally traveled far and wide as an orchestral and chamber musician. In 2015, his career came full circle when he won the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra's principal bass clarinet position.  

Jack Howell has been a member of the Duquesne University music faculty since 1996, teaching clarinet and chamber music. He is the author of “The Lovely Reed”, a how-to book on making split bamboo fly fishing rods.