IU Is Everywhere

From Bloomington to Bangkok, meet members of the IU family who are acting as ambassadors for the university.

James Campbell, Canada

Jacobs School of Music clarinet professor James Campbell is director of the annual international music festival held in Canada, where he scored his IU gig 30 years ago.

Participation in summer classical music festivals is often a formative experience for professional musicians, and for Indiana University Jacobs School of Music clarinet professor James Campbell, Festival of the Sound in Parry Sound, Ontario, provided that experience.

Campbell joined the festival as a performer in the early 1980s. By 1985, he became the new artistic director of the festival -- a position he holds to this day -- and by 1988 he had landed a gig teaching at the acclaimed Jacobs School.

Jim CampbellView print quality image
James Campbell became the artistic director for the Festival of the Sound in 1985, three years before he began teaching at the Jacobs School of Music. Photo by Mark Rash, Festival of the Sound

At the time, Festival of the Sound was a small community festival in a town of only 6,500. The festival was unique in that it was not a school for music students but a place for professionals to gather and perform mostly chamber music but also jazz, orchestral and choir ensemble pieces. The performances took place in the Parry Sound High School gym, which lacked air conditioning and was positioned between two major train lines.

Now the festival consists of 60 events throughout three weeks and takes place in Charles W. Stockey Centre for the Performing Arts, a 480-seat concert hall constructed in 2003 with the help of the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, Cultural Spaces Canada, Canada's economic development organization for Northern Ontario FedNor, the town of Parry Sound, area municipalities and a large number of individual and corporate donors.

The building is also home to the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame, honoring a famous hockey player from Parry Sound with a collection of memorabilia, exhibits and interactive games. The Stockey Centre overlooks the sound from which the town gets its name and has become a hub for economic growth for the arts in the area. The festival is also now considered one of the economic engines of the community.

"I love to think that chamber music has been a catalyst for this little town," Campbell said.

Festival of the Sound consists of 60 events throughout three weeks and takes place each summer in the Charles W. Stockey Centre for the Performing Arts, a 480-seat concert hall constructed in 2003. Photos by Mark Rash, Festival of the Sound

Campbell's role as director of Festival of the Sound has come in handy when it comes to meeting annual travel requirements Jacobs sets for its professors. That being said, Campbell has done his fair share of jet-setting to places other than Canada. He frequently travels the world and has played with orchestras in more than 35 countries. Nearly everywhere he roams, he receives resounding praise for his alma mater and employer.

"Almost everywhere I go in the world, whether I'm playing with an orchestra or in a festival, someone I meet is connected in a way to Indiana and to the Jacobs School," Campbell said. "The Jacobs School in the world of music is more famous than some countries."

He said IU has as much respect for its international students, visitors and employees as the international community has for IU.

"I came here to Indiana as a foreigner, and I’ve always been treated so well," he said. "Like many of my colleagues, I've always felt rather proud that I'm part of this school."