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Dr. Shandra Helman

Professor of Music | Clarinet & Saxophone| Woodwind Area Coordinator | Chair of the Music Department

(208) 282-3024


  • B.Mus. 2000, Lawrence University
  • M.A. 2004, University of Iowa
  • D.M.A. 2008, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Helman Music


Joined ISU Faculty in 2008

Dr. Shandra Helman is Chair of the Music Department, Professor of Clarinet & Saxophone, and Woodwind Area Coordinator at Idaho State University. She is also tenured as the 3rd/Bass Clarinet of the Boise Philharmonic and the Principal Clarinet of the Idaho State-Civic Symphony, and was selected as a finalist in the 2012 Orchestral Audition Competition for the International Clarinet Association Conference. Her extensive orchestral experience includes performances on clarinet and bass clarinet with the Utah Opera, Madison Symphony Orchestra, Madison Opera and Ballet companies, Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, Green Bay Symphony Orchestra, Cedar Rapids Symphony Orchestra, and the American Wind Symphony Orchestra. Shandra broadcast her first virtual duo performance at ClarinetFest® 2021 and was also invited to participate as a feature recital artist at ClarinetFest® 2013 in Assisi, Italy.

Shandra has taught applied clarinet and saxophone and served as the Woodwind Area Coordinator at ISU since August 2008. She is a founding member of the ISU faculty woodwind quintet, City Creek Winds (established August 2010), and metaFOUR (established August 2013), a saxophone quartet featuring university and community professionals. Both ensembles enjoy a great amount of outreach and recital performance opportunities throughout the Mountain West region. Additionally, Shandra is a founding member of the Faculty Chamber Music Recital Series at ISU, which began in January 2015.

Shandra's academic course rotation at ISU includes core surveys of music history; woodwind methods; instrumental pedagogy; clarinet/saxophone pedagogy and literature; and advanced music history seminars. Her ongoing research and performance endeavors include a bass clarinet specialty; analysis of the ever-expanding amount of published bass clarinet repertoire; saxophone chamber music; and saxophone pedagogical methods.

Her primary instructors include Linda Bartley (DMA, University of Wisconsin-Madison), Maurita Murphy Mead (MA, University of Iowa), Fan Lei (BM, Lawrence University), and Melvin Warner (private study, Northern Illinois University). Shandra has also participated in additional studies with Kalmen Opperman and Kenneth Grant, and master classes with Steve Hanusofski, Lee Livengood, Elsa Ludewig-Verdehr, Richard Stoltzman, and Patrick O'Keefe.

Shandra is a D'Addario Performing Artist. She currently resides in Pocatello, Idaho with husband and horn player, Michael, their sons, Alec and Ian, and their cats, Gracie and Hattie.