a b o u t
Praised for her "liquid tone,... superb clarity" and "beautifully controlled" sound, Erin Fung has established herself as one of the most sought after clarinetists in North America, and has performed with the Cincinnati, Atlanta, Boston, Indianapolis, Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, Victoria, and Winnipeg Symphony Orchestras, among others. Erin previously held tenured positions as Second/Bass Clarinetist of the Vancouver Opera, and Principal Clarinetist of the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra, and was the Acting Principal Clarinetist of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra from Janunary –June of 2023. Currently, she performs as Acting Principal of the Lexington Philharmonic in Kentucky, and freelances in the Midwest.
An avid chamber musician and soloist, Erin has performed with the Turning Point Ensemble on tour across Canada, in Japan with the WindRose Trio, and with the Project Muse ensemble touring throughout communities in Southern Alberta. She was also a member of the Prevailing Winds woodwind quintet in Calgary, and was a founding member of alta:nova, an innovative group focused on performing and commissioning new music, and shifting the paradigm of the classical music experience. She has premiered works by Thomas Ades, Nico Muhly, Shawn Okpebholo, Meilina Tsui, Alexina Louie, Anthony Tan, and Ana Sokolovic, among others. Erin is constantly searching for meaningful contexts for 21st century music, and finding ways to offer the emotional and compelling experience of music to new audiences.
Also a passionate advocate for music education, Erin maintains a private clarinet studio, and previously taught as the Adjunct Professor of Clarinet at Xavier University, and the University of Lethbridge. She has given masterclasses and taught at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, McGill University, Mount Royal University, and the University of Calgary. In addition, she served as Project Director for MusAid, a non-profit organization dedicated to collecting instrument donations and coordinating volunteer music teachers for youth in developing countries. In Calgary, Erin also volunteered teaching music classes to children at the Inn from the Cold shelter, and helped to launch and develop curriculum for the Calgary Philharmonic’s el sistema inspired music program, PhilharmoniKids, serving underprivileged children in the city. Through these experiences, Erin developed her core belief that sharing and learning through the arts brings great pleasure, deepens societal and personal development, and builds stronger, healthier communities.
Erin's artistic projects have focused on racial justice, and center inclusion and diversity. Prior to leaving Alberta, Erin organized the first Holocaust Memorial Concert in Calgary in 2016, a fundraiser for the Dachau Concentration Camp Museum. More recently, her 2021 project, Isolation Commissions: The Past We Step Into, came as a response to the rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans following the COVID-19 pandemic, and was inspired by the Black Lives Matters movement and Amanda Gorman's inaugural poem, The Hill We Climb. In 2022, she collaborated with Sahtu Dene videographer Tate Juniper to create a multidisciplinary installation project, Regeneration, featured at the Cincinnati Museum Center. This project, supported by an ArtsWave Truth and Reconciliation grant, addressed the link between climate change and ethane extraction in the Ohio River Valley, and its global impact extending to Northern regions of Canada, highlighting the systemic inequality and racism experienced by First Nations communities.
Erin’s teachers and mentors include Richie Hawley, Joaquin Valdepenas, Burt Hara, Ted Oien, and Michael Wayne. She holds a Master of Music degree from Rice University's Shepherd School of Music, and was a Fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center, the National Repertory Orchestra, the Banff Centre, and 2nd/Eb Clarinet Fellow at the Aspen Music Festival. Erin’s work has been generously funded by the Canada Council for the Arts, the Alberta Arts Council, the Juno Microgrants, and ArtsWave.
As an artist, Erin is guided by the belief that the creation of new music and artistic experiences can bear witness to injustice, lay groundwork for empathy, and serve as a call to action. Erin acknowledges her home in Cincinnati rests on the stolen and unceded ancestral territories of the Hopewell, Adena, Miami, Shawnee, and Osage peoples, and is committed to collaborating with artists and musicians of all backgrounds.