Susan Jacoby

Principal Oboe

Photograph of Susan Jacoby

Susan Jacoby grew up in a household where the question wasn’t “Would you like to play an instrument?” Rather, it was “Which instrument are you going to play?”  The middle school band director was her inspiration, and upon heading off to high school, encouraged her to switch from clarinet to oboe. The high school’s need for oboe players found her thrown into the top band, sounding like a quacking duck! Clearly out of her league, she had the good fortune to be sent by her parents to Houston Symphony Principal Oboe, Charles Weaver, for private studies.

At the age of 14, enjoying a performance of “South Pacific,” Susan pointed at the orchestra and announced to her Mom, “That’s what I’m going to do when I grow up!”

Today, Susan holds a Master of Music degree in Oboe Performance from the University of Washington. Her studies with prestigious teachers have included Alex Klein, Rebecca Henderson, Laila Storch, and John DeJarnatt.

Susan has been performing throughout the Northwest for 20 years. Her work has spanned the genres of Symphony Orchestra, Opera, Ballet, Musicals, Choruses and Chamber Music, appearing as the featured soloist on a number of occasions.

Her passion for music extends to her work as a private instructor, where she teaches the Art of Oboe Playing and Reed-making. The oboe is a double reed instrument and hand making reeds is indeed an art. The scrape of our knife affects our tone, pitch, and overall sound production. The Principal Oboe tunes the orchestra.

Continually inspired by the blending of the magical sound of her oboe with the timbre of other instruments, Ms. Jacoby founded “Terra Dolce Musica”, performing chamber music, producing programs and providing music for your special events.

Susan lives in Seattle with her husband Steve. She has two sons, a daughter, and four beautiful grandchildren.


The principal is generally responsible for leading the section and playing orchestral solos.