In the fall of 2016, Kelsey was a recipient of the Holland Scholarship, granting her the one-of-a-kind opportunity to study contrabass with Sorin Orcinschi at the Prince Claus Conservatoire in Groningen, The Netherlands. Having returned from Europe, Kelsey currently resides in Seattle, Washington, performing and teaching throughout the Greater Seattle Area. Kelsey currently subs for the Yakima Symphony and Symphony Tacoma, while freelancing in numerous settings reaching from chamber music to Cuban jazz, including her own genre-bending, improvisation-based ensemble February . She can be found teaching at Bellevue College, Seattle JazzED, Lakeside and elsewhere. Kelsey also runs a private studio for students of all ages on electric and upright bass.
In May of 2016, Kelsey completed her Master’s Degree in Double Bass Performance at Arizona State University under the direction of professor Catalin Rotaru. At ASU, Kelsey’s musical involvement included the ASU Symphony Orchestra, the Lyric Opera Theatre, the ASU jazz combos, the ASU Latin Ensemble, and the Visiting Quartet Residency Program. Beyond her degree, Kelsey freelanced in and around the Phoenix area, performing in settings that range from jazz, to classical chamber music, to musical theatre. She also taught group and private lessons to the students of Arcadia High School in Phoenix. Beyond performing and teaching, Kelsey also focuses much of her energy towards music composition and arranging.
Kelsey received her Bachelor of Music Degree at the University of Washington in Seattle under professor Barry Lieberman in 2014. Principal bassist of not only the University Symphony Orchestra and University Wind Ensemble, Kelsey led bass sections as principal in the Octava Chamber Orchestra and the Lake Union Civic Orchestra. Kelsey’s continuous involvement in the classical community also extends to numerous pit orchestra experiences including Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring and Handel’s Semele. Kelsey has also been involved in the University of Washington jazz combos and has been a student at Centrum Jazz Workshop under John Clayton for two years.