Co-Founder: Level Up Your Playing
Program Director: Virtual Clarinet Academy
Noted for playing with “remarkable intensity” and “dynamic interpretation” (The Clarinet), clarinetist Kristen Thompson is an established performer, educator, and clinician based in Dallas, Texas. She is the co-founder of Level Up Your Playing, an online hub that connects students around the world with experienced educators.
Ms. Thompson’s passion is performing and she can regularly be heard in solo, recital, or musical theatre engagements across North Texas. While primarily a clarinetist, she is additionally fluent on all members of the flute and saxophone families. She has been a finalist in the International Clarinet Association Young Artist Competition and Clarinet Colloquium Young Artist Competition (Dallas, TX). Prior engagements have been with the Centennial High School Percussion Ensemble, Odysseus Chamber Orchestra, and the North Texas Wind Symphony.
An enthusiast educator, Ms. Thompson is proud to share her love of clarinet with hundreds of students each year as a D’Addario Woodwinds Clinician. She additionally maintains a 40-member private studio at Hebron High School and Arbor Creek Middle School in Carrollton, Texas. Her students consistently earn chairs in Region and All-State bands, as well as receive top ratings and “Outstanding Soloist” honors at the UIL State Solo and Ensemble Contest. Further, she is an Adjunct Instructor of Clarinet at Brookhaven College.
Ms. Thompson holds a MM in Performance and a Certificate in Arts Leadership from the University of North Texas. While at UNT, she was one of two recipients of the prestigious Priddy Scholarship in Arts Leadership, served as a Teaching Assistant, and performed and recorded with the Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band. An advocate of musician’s health, she presented a poster on the role of the vocal musculature in wind performance at the 2013 Performing Arts Medical Association Conference in Aspen, CO. Ms. Thompson holds a BA in Music and a minor in chemistry from Potsdam (NY) State College. Her primary teachers include Kimberly Luevano, James Gillespie, and Raphael Sanders.
Kristen currently resides in Dallas with her boxer, Capi. They enjoy road trips and camping.