JUNE 2016 11
or most of us there is the world we know based simply on what we observe.
Our view is generally in black and white, with perhaps a few shades of grey
tinting our vision. We seem to know what we know by what we see. But for
some, like Becky Bell Ballard there is the added dimension of sound. Music
sets the tenor of her life which includes a life-long passion for making good
As a young girl in Chicago, music was ever present. Becky’s father, a bio-
chemist, played clarinet for his own amusement which included performing
in a community band. “Music was always a part of our family life,” explains Becky. “It was a natural
thing for me to be drawn into the study of music and instruments of all kinds.” In elementary
school, hearing the French horn played at a Chicago Symphony concert wove its magic spell around
Becky and enchanted her with its rich sound.
The process of bringing the elegant brass instrument to life led her to study with the renowned Dr.
Thomas Bacon at Arizona State University School of Music. “I had never been to Arizona, let alone
becky bell ballard
stor y by julia c patrick | photography by jh jennings