Quebec-Born Stéphane Fontaine has held the Principal Clarinet chair in the Quebec Symphony Orchestra since 2004. He graduated in 2002 from Marie Picard's class at the Conservatoire de Musique de Québec with «Great distinction» in both Clarinet and Chamber Music. He then attended DePaul University in Chicago, where he studied with the celebrated Larry Combs.
In 2008, Mr. Fontaine was the top-prize winner of the Audi-Mozart Competition in Rovereto, Italy. In 2007, he was a semi-finalist at the Karl-Nielsen International Competition in Denmark. In 2004, he was the recipient of the Third Prize at the International Clarinet Competition Dos Hermanas, in Spain, where he was noticed by the legendary clarinetists Karl Leister and Walter Boykens. In 2002, he was awarded the prize for Best interpretation of a Canadian Piece at the Montreal competition Le Prix d'Europe.
As a soloist, he performed Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto with the Quebec Symphony Orchestra, praised by both the critics and the public. As a chamber music player, he plays regularly in recitals with pianist François Zeitouni as well as many ensembles. Stéphane Fontaine has taught the clarinet at le Domaine Forget Academy in Charlevoix, the Camp Musical de Lanaudière, as well as the Conservatoire de Musique du Québec. He is curently teaching at the Université Laval.
As an added interest in the performing arts he is also taking part in a theatre research workshop featuring Mr. Richard Nieoczym and le « Théâtre Contre-Courant ».
Mr. Fontaine is a Buffet Crampon performing artist.