Clarinetist, composer returns to share the music

A South Whidbey alum is tuning up for her first show at the Whidbey Island Center for the Arts.

A South Whidbey alum is tuning up for the first show of her own at the Whidbey Island Center for the Arts.

Clarinetist and composer Angelique Poteat will be accompanied by four other Pacific Northwest musicians during her upcoming show at WICA, “Angelique Poteat and Friends,” 7:30 to 9 p.m. on Friday, March 4.

“I haven’t hosted my own concert at WICA yet, so it feels a little like coming home to be able to share this music,” Poteat said.

Poteat graduated from South Whidbey High School in 2004. She’s played clarinet for the past 25 years and written music for 27.

“It definitely became kind of a center of my life,” she said of music. “My family moved up to Whidbey when I was in middle school. The school programs at South Whidbey were so fostering when it came to the arts.”

Though she currently lives on the mainland, many of Poteat’s family members still live on the island, and she is hoping to move back eventually.

She plays with the Saratoga Orchestra and the Seattle Symphony. Musicians from the latter group will be joining her as part of a quintet during her upcoming show: Eduardo Rios and Libby Phelps on violin, Kayliegh Miller on viola and Emily Hu on cello.

The event will be a mix of standard repertoire pieces spanning the late 1800s into this century, as well as original compositions. Poteat’s work has been performed and recorded all over the world, including Australia, Germany, Lithuania, Hungary, Japan, Italy and Norway.

“My music is certainly better-traveled than I am, at least on the international level,” she said, adding that before the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, one of the last things she did was go on tour with the American Festival Orchestra to China.

Performing for Poteat, and the entire music industry, came to a standstill at the beginning of the pandemic. It is now starting to see some return to normalcy, and many groups still have a backlog of performances that were scheduled to take place from March 2020 through July of 2021.

“There’s nothing like going to a live concert and experiencing that energy of live music,” she said. “I’m so relieved that we’re starting to venture out into having these shared concert experiences again.”

Some of her notable pieces include “Beyond Much Difference,” “Much Difference,” “Roots of Variegation,” “Reflections on a Summer” and “A Perspective.”

“My hope is that we get a lot of people that come out to hear some real outstanding classical music,” she said of her WICA show. “I think that there’s something for everyone.”

For more information, and to purchase tickets, visit