Dr. Natalie Groom is a freelance clarinetist in Washington, D.C. and substitute clarinetist of the Annapolis Symphony, Annapolis Opera, and Symphony of the Potomac. She is an Artist in Residence at Collington Retirement Community, a Junior Board member of Washington Performing Arts, and a research fellow for the Institute for Composer Diversity. This year she performed with the Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet, invented a new single reed micrometer, and collaborated with Yo-Yo Ma, Esperanza Spalding, the National Symphony, and the Baltimore Symphony Youth Ensemble.
Natalie was a featured soloist with the White Mountain Symphony Orchestra and has performed at The Kennedy Center, New World Center, The Anthem, Phillips Collection, and Goethe-Institut, among many other venues. Her festival and conference performances include Clarinetfest 2018 in Belgium, Orford Centre d’Arts, Imani Winds Chamber Music Festival, Henri Selmer Clarinet Academy, District New Music Coalition, and the Miami Music Festival.
A teacher, conductor, and academic, she has led university clarinet choirs and taught Rock and American Popular Music, Business Communications, and clarinet lessons and chamber music at the University of Maryland and University of Arizona. Her publications include three reports in the International Clarinet Association journal and a dissertation titled An Analysis of Commercial Single Reed Micrometers and the Invention of a New Manual Single Reed Micrometer.
In 2018, Natalie and soprano Jennifer Piazza-Pick founded Whistling Hens, a chamber music ensemble that celebrates and advances the artistic accomplishments of women by performing and commissioning all female-composed music. Their work invites listeners to reflect on the impact male privilege has had on traditional music programming, question the status quo of gender inequality in the classical music community, and engage with music by women of various backgrounds. They are the recipients of numerous grants and a residency at Avaloch Farm Music Institute. They have performed at Women Composers Festival of Hartford, Music by Women at Mississippi University for Women, and Darkwater Women in Music.
Natalie is clarinetist of Classically Dope, a Wammie nominated hip-hop/rap and classical music collaboration with D.C. rapper Konshens the MC. Using music as an instrument of positive social influence, this ensemble tackles subjects such as the power of belief, racial inequality, stereotypes, police brutality, and being a change agent in the world. Natalie composes/arranges music for Classically Dope and gave the premiere of two of her arrangements at The Anthem while opening for the National Symphony Orchestra in 2019. In 2020, she will be premiering two arrangements written for the University of Maryland Wind Orchestra as part of a large-scale collaboration with Classically Dope.
Specializing in chamber music, Natalie was a fellowship wind quintet member of Wavelength Winds and the Fred Fox Wind Quintet. In her tenure, she toured China, created a classical music video in collaboration with Avant Projekts, recorded two albums, and was integral in securing a $20 million donation to the Fred Fox School of Music.
Natalie Groom earned her D.M.A. at the University of Maryland, M.B.A. and M.M. at the University of Arizona, and B.M. at Kent State University where she studied with Robert DiLutis, Jerry Kirkbride, Dennis Nygren, Amitai Vardi, Jackie Glazier, and Joseph Minocchi.
Photo by Will Starks.
Combating COVID-19 With Mini Music Series
As an Artist in Residence at Collington Retirement Community, Natalie chose to be creative and proactive with how she'd continue to share music with residents after the campus was closed due to COVID-19. In March 2020, she launched the Mini Music series, a series of 35-60 minute music events broadcasted to residents through their TVs and the Residents Association website. The events are free and "open" to the public through Facebook Live. Follow the series by liking the Collington Artists in Residence Facebook page, and tune in to the event livestreams at www.facebook.com/CollingtonAIR.
ONLINE Lesson Studio is Open
To combat the spread of COVID-19, Dr. Groom has opened an online teaching studio. Use the Contact Form to register!
Visit the Teaching page to learn more about the online learning process and how it can be adapted to help you continue working during COVID-19 closures.
New Product - Mr. Mapper
The Definitive Single Reed Micrometer
Mr. Mapper was invented by clarinetists Natalie Groom and Robert DiLutis to correct all of the flaws found in other commercial single reed micrometers. The new and improved tool measures clarinet and saxophone reeds of all sizes and ensures the user can expect reliable readings and repeatable results.
Mr. Mapper is a micrometer designed to measure the thickness of single reeds (clarinet and saxophone) of any size. This user-friendly precision tool helps you improve reeds by identifying areas which need adjustment. Mr. Mapper uses a digital dial indicator, two planes of motion, and a set of pins to allow different areas of the reed to be measured and compared.
The ideal reed should be symmetrical from the center, but commercial reeds often fail the player in this regard. Use Mr. Mapper to identify points lacking symmetry, and adjust the reed for a purer tone, snappier response, and improved intonation. Mr. Mapper can be used to reproduce reeds to identical dimensions of your favorite reed. Empower yourself to get more life out of a box of reeds by making more of them playable.
Contact Dr. Groom if you're interested in testing or purchasing Mr. Mapper.
New Sheet Music Publications
Shop two new publications of songs for clarinet and soprano. Transcribed from Rebecca Clarke's works, Down by the Salley Gardens and Three Old English Songs are available for purchase from Whistling Hens Publishing. Click the button below for more information.