Professor Pamela Ajango is the Instructor of Oboe at Butler University, joining the faculty in 2013. She teaches oboe, chamber music, and instrumental techniques, and has served as interim area coordinator for Woodwinds. Professor Ajango has been a full-time freelance oboist for over 20 years. She is a member of the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra (2nd oboe/English horn), winning her tenured position in 2007. She also frequently serves as acting principal oboe of the ICO, and can be heard in that role on the ICO’s first recording release, Momentum 21. Professor Ajango is a studio musician, recording for music publishers Alfred, FJH, Hal Leonard, and many others. She can often be heard in the pit orchestras of visiting Broadway musicals, in solo and chamber music series, and with professional orchestras in and around Indiana.
Professor Ajango is a founding member of the Circle City Wind Quintet (2003-present), comprised of members of the Indianapolis Symphony and Chamber Orchestras. The quintet serves as music educators for the Symphony, performing at schools, community centers, retirement homes, and for corporations (Eli Lilly & Co., Roche, others). Professor Ajango has a keen interest in musical outreach and education; she has served as a teaching artist for the Manhattan School of Music, the New York Philharmonic, the Montana Summer Symphony, and Midori and Friends. Her faculty positions have included instructor of oboe at Anderson University, the University of Indianapolis, and Earlham College, visiting professor of oboe at the University of Virginia, and oboe studio assistant at her alma mater, the Manhattan School of Music. Professor Ajango has taught at many summer music programs, including Indiana University’s Summer Music Clinic, the Saarburg Festival (Germany), InterHarmony Festival (Italy), and Butler University’s oboe and woodwind camps. Most recently, she co-created “The Midwest Oboe Collective”, a chamber group comprised of oboe professors from around the Midwest. They were featured performers at the 2019 International Double Reed Society conference, and are currently planning many exciting oboe events in the near future (stay tuned)!
Professor Ajango is active in the International Double Reed Society, having performed and lectured at many conferences over the years. Her 2012 presentation titled “Creating and Maintaining a Successful Freelance Career” was well-received and has been referenced by other oboists in their teaching curriculum. She has performed at the yearly conferences as both a chamber and solo musician, twice premiering works which were written for her (The Empty Sky for solo oboe, by Butler professor and composer Frank Felice, and Variations for oboe, bassoon, and piano, by Matthew Bridgham). Professor Ajango was a guest clinician at the 2015 Midwest Clinic in Chicago, presenting a lecture/demonstration “Foundations for Successful Oboe Students”, which led to a published article for the SmartMusic blog, now used regularly by many school band and orchestra programs.
Besides performing and teaching, Professor Ajango is active in arts administration as well. She is on the orchestra committee of the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, currently serving as its chairperson. She has served on this committee for many years, including three contract negotiation periods. She has worked as a contractor since 2001 for orchestra projects, as well as smaller ensembles. During her time in New York City, she was employed by organizations such as CultureFinder, Midori and Friends, and the New York Philharmonic, writing reports, grant proposals, and online content. She continues to help students with their writing and editing skills, and has been a featured speaker at lectures about business skills in the music workplace.
Professor Ajango was previously a full-time freelance oboist in New York City, where she performed with many esteemed ensembles, including the New York Philharmonic, the New Jersey Symphony, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, and the Orpheus Chamber Ensemble, as well as for many Broadway productions and commercial recordings. She helped create the SONOS Chamber Orchestra of New York, serving as its first personnel manager and principal oboist, and was a featured soloist on its premiere concert. An Indianapolis native, Professor Ajango studied with Malcolm Smith, former principal oboist of the ISO, and her predecessor at Butler University. She completed her bachelor’s degree at Boston University, under the tutelage of Ralph Gomberg, former principal oboist of the Boston Symphony. Her master’s degree is from the Manhattan School of Music, where she studied with Joseph Robinson, retired principal oboist of the New York Philharmonic. She completed doctoral work with Stephen Taylor at SUNY Stony Brook.