String Faculty


Dr. Laura Talbott Clark

Violin and Viola

A vibrant musician and innovative educator, Laura Talbott Clark is a violinist and violist equally dedicated to performing and teaching.  Currently, Laura serves as Associate Professor of Violin and Viola at Oklahoma State University, where she was awarded the Wise-Diggs-Berry Award for excellence in the performing arts in 2011.  In 2007, she was named the College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Professor by the OSU Student Council.  She co-founded the OSU String Academy (OSUSA) in 2009 and started the OSUSA Violin Head Start Program in 2011. She is theDirector and Founder of the OSU Horizons String Chamber Music Camp.  Laura has held teaching positions at the Inspiration Point Fine Arts String Camp, Meadowmount School of Music, Indian Hill MusicCenter, Bands and Orchestras of America Summer Symposium, Triada Music Festival, and Boston University.  She has served as a Member-at-Large, Vice President, and President of the Oklahoma chapter of the American String Teachers Association (ASTA). She is currently OK-ASTA's Special Projects and Membership Chair.

An avid chamber musician, she is the second violinist of the Tulsa Rock Quartet.  She is a member of Tulsa Camerata, for which she performs on both violin and viola.  She has served as the principal violinist of the Janus 21 Chamber Ensemble of Boston and performed as part of the Brightmusic Chamber Music Series (Oklahoma City), Mannes Conservatory’s annual Beethoven Institute (NYC), Triada Music Festival (Ludlow, VT) and Tulsa Brown Bag-It Recital Series.  Formerly, she was the Artistic Director of theFrontiers New Music Ensemble, an ensemble she co-founded.  She has appeared as a recitalist throughout the United States.

Laura has an extensive background as an orchestral musician.  She is currently a member of the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, playing in their viola section; she also performs with the Tulsa Ballet (viola) and the Tulsa Opera (violin).  In the past, she has performed with the New Hampshire Symphony, Nashville Symphony, Huntsville Symphony, Boston Virtuosi, Ann Arbor Symphony, Aspen Chamber Symphony, Cantata Singers Chamber Orchestra, Boston Lyric Opera, Oklahoma City Philharmonic, and the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra.

Laura received her doctorate in string performance from Boston University.  She holds additional degrees from Vanderbilt University (B.M.) and the University of Michigan (M.M.).  Her principal teachers have included Peter Zazofsky, Paul Kantor, Christian Teal, and John Kochanowski. Laura has spent summers at Interlochen, Meadowmount, Tanglewood, Oberlin Baroque Institute and the Aspen Music Festival, where she was a fellowship student.

Equally interested in the scholarly aspects of performance, music education, and the creative process, Dr. Talbott has presented lectures at the American String Teachers Association National Convention (2007; 2009) and the Maryland Music Educators Association State Convention (2008).  Her 2007 ASTA presentation resulted in a feature article in Strings magazine’s “Strings 101” column (“From Croak to Croon” compiled by James Reel; October 2007, No. 152).  In 2007, Dr. Talbott organized a two-day seminar featuring San Francisco-based creativity coach and author, Dr. Eric Maisel.  The workshop, entitled “Coaching the Artist Within,” attracted artists from all disciplines and provided them with ways to connect more deeply to their art.

Initially triggered by her own experiences with overuse-injuries, Dr. Talbott is actively involved in educating OSU and Oklahoma string students about the biomechanics of playing the violin/viola and over-use injury prevention and rehabilitation.  She has participated in the Ithaca College Healthy Musician Symposium and is working toward certification as an Andover Educator.  In 2005, Dr. Talbott organized a three-day workshop at OSU featuring Andover Educator Chairperson, Dr. Amy Likar.  Dr. Likar worked with OSU students, members of the Stillwater community, and OU students to increase awareness of the biomechanics of string playing.

Dr. Talbott Clark is a member of the American String Teachers Association (ASTA), Music Educators National Committee (MENC), Oklahoma Music Educators Association (OMEA), and Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society.

Kaitlin Teske Gallman


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Colin Waddell


Oklahoma City native Colin Waddell is currently the orchestra director at Putnam City High School in Oklahoma City. He has served in this position since 2013 and has received numerous accolades and awards in that tenure. His orchestras have competed with success at the highest level and have traveled through several states including Texas, Colorado, and Missouri. In 2019, the Putnam City Orchestras will travel to London, England to perform at Cadogan Hall. 

Colin has studied teaching, conducting, and performance techniques and strategies with Peter Markes, Kristin Geist, Donna Cain, Dr. John Schimek, and Dr. Matthew Mailman.

As a performer, Mr. Waddell is an accomplished violist and has performed with the Fort Smith Symphony, Bartlesville Symphony, Enid Symphony, and the Oklahoma City Philharmonic. He has also served as principal violinist/violist for 13 productions, musicals, and operas in Oklahoma City. In 2012, Colin helped pioneer the Graduate String Quartet program at Oklahoma City University.

In his spare time, Colin enjoys playing electric bass in the “Cody Dunbar Band” and has performed all across the United States. He also is proud of his loving wife, Melissa, who continually supports his musical endeavors. 


Dr. Meredith Blecha-Wells


Dr. Meredith Blecha-Wells leads a dynamic career dedicated to both performing and teaching.  She has appeared as a chamber musician and orchestral player in the United States, Australia, and Europe, and has had the pleasure of performing in world class concert halls such as the Kennedy Center and the Sydney Opera House.

As a chamber musician, she is a founding member of the Pangaea Chamber Players and regularly performs with the Tulsa Camerata and the Brightmusic Ensemble in Oklahoma City.  She recently recorded a CD with the Pangaea Chamber Players entitled Purple Line.  The CD, which will be released under the Blue Griffin Label, includes flute, cello, and piano and features works by Gaubert, Rorem, Villa-Lobos, and Weber.

A devoted teacher, Dr. Blecha-Wells is currently the Associate Professor of Cello at Oklahoma State University, where she was recently awarded the College of Arts and Sciences Junior Faculty Award for Scholarly Excellence.  Her students have won a number of competitions, including prizes in the American Protege Competition, the Music Teachers National Association Competition, the Ad Astra String Competition, the Buttram Competition, the Oklahoma City Youth Orchestra, and the Keith Competition.  Her students have been accepted to study at a number of music schools in the US including Indiana University, Southern Methodist University, and festivals such as Round Top, Meadowmount, Eastern Music Festival, Brevard, Interlochen, Hot Springs, and Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival.

Dr. Blecha-Wells has taught throughout the United States and has most recently given classes at Auburn University, the University of Kansas, Middle Tennessee State University, the University of Northern Colorado, Florida Gulf Coast University, the University of Oklahoma, and the University of Georgia.  Previous teaching posts include Point CounterPoint Chamber Music Camp in Vermont, Colorado Suzuki Institute, Chicago Suzuki Institute, Indiana University Summer Music Clinic, the Hochstein School of Music and Dance, the Eastman Community Music School, the Indianapolis Academy of Music, and Indiana University's String Academy.

Dr. Blecha-Wells received a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Cello Performance from Indiana University, studying under Janos Starker and Helga Winold.  Additionally, she holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music where she served as the teaching assistant to Distinguished Professor Alan Harris.  Additional studies include festival participation at the Taos School of Music, the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, Spoleto Festival USA, the National Repertory Orchestra, and the Bowdoin International Music Festival.

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Andrew Goins

Double Bass

Andrew Goins is dedicated to bringing the perspective of an active performing schedule to his busy life as a music educator. Mr. Goins is the head orchestra director at Arlington High School in Arlington, TX, and over nearly twenty years of teaching, has built a reputation for revitalizing programs. Groups under his baton have consistently earned Sweepstakes at UIL Concert & Sightreading Evaluations, as well as numerous accolades at music festivals, performances, and competitions across Texas and the United States. Mr. Goins has helped prepare and conduct TMEA honor groups, and has served as TMEA Region Chair and Region Vice-President. He is an active judge, clinician, and presenter on the use of technology in the classroom. Under Andrew’s leadership, the AHS Orchestra founded the first chapter of United Sound in Texas, providing the opportunity for students with special needs to participate in instrumental music.
As a performer, Mr. Goins enjoys an active and diverse freelance performing schedule on both double bass and electric bass. He plays in numerous orchestras, jazz groups, musical pit orchestras, and the occasional rock band. He regularly plays with the Dallas Winds, the leading professional wind ensemble in the United States, and recently recorded a CD featuring the works of renowned composer John Mackey. Andrew has accompanied Bobby McFerrin, Itzhak Perlman, and Chris Martin, among others.
Mr. Goins holds a Bachelor of Music in Music Studies from The University of Texas at Austin, where he studied double bass with Dr. David Neubert and Mr. John Fremgen. Andrew has served on the faculty for summer camps at Baylor University, the University of Texas at Arlington, and Sam Houston State University. His private students have consistently been members of the TMEA All-State Orchestras, and he has many former students who have gone on to perform, teach, and create music.When not teaching or performing, Mr. Goins enjoys cycling, camping and hiking in the mountains, and enjoying time with his wife, Ange, and their crazy rescue Schnauzer, Tigger.