Kelly Riordan is a musician, pedagogue, and music business marketer. Her private studio was founded in 2012 and proudly boasts several recent graduates who have gone on to study music and music education. Her pedagogy is focused on interactive experiences that give students a strong foundation in both technique and aural skills.
Her marketing experience began with an internship at the Waukesha County Conservatory of Music, where she was responsible for running outreach programs in the community to build brand awareness and attract new students. Her marketing experience quickly expanded beyond music, and she was actively recruited for organic marketing campaigns by major brands including Cadillac, Red Bull, American Express, and Anheuser-Busch.
Upon relocating after the completion of her graduate program, Riordan used these same principles to grow her private studio to a full-time business of 43 students in less than 3 months. When the majority of lessons moved online in 2020, Kelly stepped up and began helping colleagues learn to teach remotely, refine their business management, and find students through organic marketing.
Kelly is the co-founder of Outside the Bachs, LLC - a program designed to support musicians in creating their own private music studios and delivering the highest quality education to their students. Her passion for music education is present not only in her own studio, but in her support of 3,000+ students in studios around the world.
Her work has brought her to the forefront in music business education. Riordan regularly appears as a guest on podcasts including The Broken Glass Podcast, The Candid Clarinetist, Duet Partner Podcast, Flute 360, and The Enlightened Musician. She also speaks regularly at universities, with recent lectures at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, North Carolina School of the Arts, and University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh.
Riordan is an active performer worldwide. She is a member of The Athena Trio, an all-female ensemble founded in Athens, Georgia which aims to foster opportunities for female composers and musicians. The Athena Trio has most recently performed with the Chamber Music Athens inaugural festival and participated in The Berliner Competition. Coaches have included Dr. Liza Stepanova and Maggie Snyder, and masterclass appearances include Peter Frankl, Jupiter String Quartet, and Sarah Shafer. Other recent performances have been with the Augusta Symphony Orchestra, UGA Opera Theatre Orchestra, Eurus Quintet, Hodgson Wind Ensemble, UWM Symphony Orchestra, UWM Graduate Woodwind Quintet, and UWM Wind Ensemble. Festival appearances include Chamber Music Athens and Clarinet Academy of America in Athens, Georgia, World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles in San Jose, California, and the Summa Cum Laude Festival in Vienna, Austria.
Kelly Riordan holds a Master of Music (MM) in Performance and Literature from the Hugh Hodgson School of Music at the University of Georgia and a Bachelor Arts (BA) in Music from the Peck School of the Arts at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Her primary teachers include Dr. D Ray McClellan, Todd Levy, and Val Wisnewski.
Outside of music, Kelly enjoys baking, water sports, traveling with her husband, and taking their dog, Mahi, for long walks. Kelly Riordan is currently based in Hartland, Wisconsin.