Carol J. Semmes, a Chicago native, cellist, and music educator, began her cello studies at the American Conservatory of Music, in Chicago. She received her Bachelor of Music degree in Cello Performance from the Chicago Musical College-Roosevelt University and Masters of Music Degree in Cello Performance from DePaul University School of Music in Chicago. Ms. Semmes received her training under the tutelage of: Rosalie Ernest(American Conservatory of Music, Florida and Houston Symphony ),Karl Fruh (Chicago Symphony), Judy Stone (Orion Ensemble), and William Cernota (Lyric Opera of Chicago).
Ms. Semmes currently freelances in the Chicago area, teaches cello/bass in her home and in the Northwest Indiana area. She is a member of the Kankakee Valley Symphony Orchestra, the American String Teachers Association, National Association for Music Education, and the bass coach for the Northwest Indiana Youth Symphony Orchestra. For 22 years, Ms. Semmes was the Cello and Bass Applied Instructor at Wirt/Emerson School for the Visual and Performing Arts in Gary, Indiana , teaching 5th-12th grade, recently retiring in 2016. She is now currently the Orchestra Director at the Michelle Obama School of Technology and the Arts in Park Forest, Illinois, teaching, 4th-8th grade students. Ms. Semmes has been an Adjunct Professor of cello at ONU for the past 20 years.
When not teaching Ms. Semmes enjoys gardening, sketching, being with family and taking care of her two cats, Ozzie and Oliver.