Karlyn Bond

Karlyn Bond is professor of piano, and chair of the music department at Walla Walla University in College Place, Washington, a position she has held since 2022.

Karlyn was born in Spokane, Washington, and grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah, the oldest of three daughters of Robert and Georgene Thompson Bond. She was raised in a home and extended family where music was an important activity, and all three daughters started piano lessons at an early age. Gladys Gladstone Rosenberg and Florence Brinton were Karlyn\\\'s first piano teachers.

She gave her first recital at the Holladay Library in Salt Lake City at age eleven and was a soloist with the Utah Symphony a few months later at age twelve. While attending Walla Walla Valley Academy in Washington state, she continued her piano study with Leonard Richter at nearby Walla Walla College, now University. After graduating from WWVA in 1985, she enrolled at WWC as a piano performance major with Richter as her major professor.

In her first year at WWC as a student, Karlyn was a winner in the 1985 Idaho-Washington Symphony Young Artist Competition and performed as a soloist with the orchestra. During her sophomore year, she won the Washington state and Northwest region Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) Wurlitzer competitions and was one of seven to participate in the MTNA national competition in New York City. In that same year she also competed in the Spokane Music Festival, now the Spokane Allied Arts Festival, where she won the coveted Young Artist Award and played the final movement of the Rachmaninoff second piano concerto with the Spokane Symphony.

She and her cousin, Karin Thompson, a cellist, were elected as soloists in the Walla Walla Symphony\'s Young Artists Concert in 1988, with Karin performing Kol Nidre by Max Bruch and Karlyn the Franz Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1. She also played the Liszt concerto with the Utah Symphony, describing that appearance at the time as "by far the most significant performance of my life."

She graduated cum laude and with other honors from WWC in 1989 with a B.Mus. in piano performance.  She was elected to membership in the WWC chapter of Pi Kappa Lambda, a national music honor society, and was also one of two students nationally to receive the Jacob Javits Fellowship for graduate work in the performing arts, a scholarship that covered four years of graduate study of tuition and fees plus approximately $10,000 a year for living expenses.

With the support from JJF, she subsequently completed an M.Mus. and a D.M.A. at the University of Southern California, where she studied piano with John Perry and completed areas of concentration in piano performance, music history and literature, instrumental collaboration, and analysis of tonal music. Following completion of her study at USC in 1994, Bond returned to Salt Lake City, where she taught full-time for 21 years at Westminster College, teaching a variety of music and interdisciplinary classes.

While at WC she served as a member of the honors faculty, chaired the music department, and was director of the Westminster Concert Series. She frequently performed on campus and in the community as well as nationally.

Other activities included serving as a board member of and performer in the popular summer Intermezzo Chamber Music Series; playing in the Salt Lake-based piano quartet Quattro Amici, with three Utah Symphony Orchestra members; and playing joint recitals with her sister Kori Bond, who oversees the piano program at Idaho State University. Beginning in 2020, Karlyn taught piano and piano literature at Utah Valley University, worked as a bookseller in The King’s English Bookshop, and established Portico MLA: Adventures in Music Literature, and Art – a learning community for readers and lover of the arts, which was hard-launched in the fall of 2022.

Bond is as passionate about literature as she is about music. In 1996 she released a CD, "Piano Classics from the World of Jane Austen," which includes performances of sonatas by Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Clementi, and others. The liner provides insightful commentary about the important role piano played in the lives of young women in Austen\'s time and her novels. Bond also recorded an earlier CD with the Utah Symphony’s principal trombonist, Larry Zalkind, in 2002.

Following an extended unofficial sabbatical, she is thrilled to be returning to Academia at her alma mater where one of her two sisters and several longtime friends and teachers will be colleagues.


Sources: Program notes, 2005 joint recital with her sister, Walla Walla College; 1986-1989 issues of Opus, WWC music department newsletter; Westminster College website biography, 2012; Piano Classics from the World of Jane Austen CD liner, 1996; personal knowledge.