Artistic Director
Principal Trombone – New York Philharmonic
The Juilliard School
Joseph Alessi was appointed Principal Trombone of the New York Philharmonic in the spring of 1985. He began musical studies in his native California with his father, Joseph Alessi, Sr. As a high school student in San Rafael, California, and was a soloist with the San Francisco Symphony before continuing his musical training at Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute of Music. Prior to joining the Philharmonic, Mr. Alessi was second trombone of The Philadelphia Orchestra for four seasons, and principal trombone of L’Orchestre symphonique de Montreal for one season. In addition, he has performed as guest principal trombonist with the London Symphony Orchestra in Carnegie Hall led by Pierre Boulez.
Mr. Alessi is an active soloist, recitalist, and chamber music performer. In April 1990 he made his solo debut with the New York Philharmonic, performing Creston’s Fantasy for Trombone, and in 1992 premiered Christopher Rouse’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Trombone Concerto with the Philharmonic, which commissioned the work for its 150th anniversary celebration. His most recent appearance with the Philharmonic as soloist was in world premiere performances of Melinda Wagner’s Trombone Concerto in February of 2007.
Mr. Alessi has been a guest soloist with the Lincoln Symphony, National Repertory Orchestra, Colorado Symphony Orchestra, Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, Virginia Symphony, Alabama Symphony Orchestra, Santa Barbara Symphony, South Dakota Symphony, New Japan Philharmonic, Seoul Philharmonic, Orchestra of Teatro Massimo Bellini in Catania, Sicily, Mannheim National Theater Orchestra, National Symphony of Taiwan, Puerto Rico Symphony, Hague Philharmonic, Helsinki Philharmonic, and the Hartford Symphony. Mr. Alessi has also participated in numerous festivals, including the Festivale Musica di Camera in Protogruaro, Italy; Cabrillo Music Festival; Swiss Brass Week; and Lieksa Brass Week in Finland. He was featured in the 1997 International Trombone Festival in Feldkirch, Austria, and the International Meeting of Brass Instruments in Lille, France. He is a founding member of the Summit Brass ensemble at the Rafael Mendez Brass Institute in Tempe, Arizona. In 2002 Mr. Alessi was awarded an International Trombone Association Award for his contributions to the world of trombone music and trombone playing.
Mr. Alessi is currently on the faculty of The Juilliard School; his students now occupy posts with many major symphony orchestras in the U.S. and internationally. As a clinician for the Edwards Instrument Co., he has also given master classes throughout the world and has toured Europe extensively as a master teacher and recitalist. He has performed as soloist with several leading concert bands, including the U.S. Military Academy Band at West Point, U.S. Army Band (Pershing’s Own), and the U.S. Marine Band (President’s Own).
Mr. Alessi’s discography includes many releases on the Summit record label, including the recent Trombonastics, and a disc with New York Philharmonic Principal Trumpet Philip Smith entitled Fandango; he also recorded New York Legends on the Cala label. His live recording of the Rouse Concerto with the New York Philharmonic can be heard on Volume II of the recent release, An American Celebration, on New York Philharmonic Special Editions, the Orchestra’s own recording label. Three new recordings are scheduled for release in 2007: Return to Sorrento, on the Naxos record label, and two recordings on the Summit record label that feature Mr. Alessi with Columbus State University Wind Ensemble and the Imperial Brass Band. In addition, conductor/composer Bramwell Tovey recently recorded a piece written especially for Mr. Alessi, entitled Urban Cabaret with Mr. Alessi as soloist.
Mr. Alessi was invited by the International Trombone Association to record a solo disc of newly composed works, which was distributed to the Association’s membership of 5,000 trombonists in early 1999 and is now available as Beyond the End of the Century through Summit Records. Recently, his recording of George Crumb’s Starchild on the Bridge record label, featuring Mr. Alessi as soloist, won a Grammy Award for 1999–2000. Other recordings featuring Mr. Alessi are with the Canadian Brass (Sony Classical and Philips Records).
On December 1, 2015 Mr. Alessi launched www.alessimusicstudios.com an educational website aimed at helping trombonists, both students and professionals alike, in their preparation of orchestral excerpts. The site contains video tutorials on trombone performance, comments and annotated parts for the major trombone excerpts and the Orchestra “Machine”, the ultimate virtual symphonic orchestra to accompany trombonists in practicing excerpts.
Further information about Mr. Alessi can be found on his website, www.slidearea.com.



Alessi Seminar Guest Faculty Member for Bass Trombone
Stefan Schulz initially played horn and later changed to trombone. He studied in Berlin and Chicago. Before he became a member of the Berliner Philharmoniker, he was bass trombonist with the Staatskapelle Berlin from 1993 to 2002. From 1996 to 2002, he also played in the Bayreuth Festival Orchestra.
His commitment to education has accompanied his musical career from the beginning: first as a mentor with the Orchestra Academy of the Staatskapelle Berlin, and as a lecturer at the University of Music, Drama and Media Hanover. From 2000 to 2004, he taught as a visiting professor at the Academy of Music Hanns Eisler Berlin. Since the summer semester of 2004, Stefan Schulz has been a professor at the Berlin University of the Arts. Stefan Schulz has performed as a soloist with renowned orchestras including the RundfunkSinfonieorchester Berlin, the Hamburg Philharmonic, Dresden Philharmonic, Columbus Symphony etc.
He is a dedicated chamber musician and is a permanent member of the Brass Ensemble of the Berliner Philharmoniker and regular guest with the ensemble German Brass. Together with the trombonists Joseph Alessi, Michel Bequet and Jorgen van Rijen, he founded the World Trombone Quartet. A special artistic friendship links him with the composer and saxophonist Daniel Schnyder, some of whose works he has premiered and recorded on CD. Together with pianist Marcin Grochowina, he plays in the Daniel Schnyder Trio. Other composers whose works the trombonist has premiered and recorded on CD in recent years include Jean Michel Defaye, Niels Marthinsen and Poul Ruders.
He plays exclusively on instruments built by Antoine Courtois and has released 2 CDs on the swedish label BIS.



Alessi Seminar Mock Audition Panel
Michel Becquet is recognized worldwide as one of the leading French brass players. His artistic expression and the finesse with which he performs along with his unique sound have lead him to a prestigious international career. He was born February 4, 1954 at Limoges. From an early age he played piano and horn (his father was a professional horn player) before discovering at the age of 10 his passion for the trombone. After having studied at the Limoges Conservatory he was admitted to the National Conservatory of Paris at the age of 15 where he quickly earned his degrees including the conservatory’s first prize in 1969. From there, he won all of the International Competitions for Trombone (Geneva, Munich, Prague and Toulon). At the age of 18 he was hired by Wolfgang Sawallisch to play first trombone in the Orchestre de la Suisse-Romande before becoming a member of the Paris Opera Orchestra. He left that position in 1989 to dedicate himself to teaching at the “Hochschule für Musik” of Cologne together with many other international figures. In 1990, Gilbert Amy asked him to head up the Brass Department at the National Conservatory of Lione. He is also the permanent director of “Les Cuivre Français” a group of 18 top level performers. This brass ensemble was formed in 1989 and unites the top players from the principal French orchestras under the direction of Thierry Caens with the oversight of Michel Becquet. The scope of this ensemble is to promote Renaissance brass music (Gabrieli, Monteverdi), Romantic era music (R. Strauss, E. Grieg) as well as contemporary composers (Delerue, Takamitsu). The arrangements and transcriptions of all periods (Bach, Haendel, Mozart, Mussorgsky, Gounod, Debussy, Ravel..) remain a part of the permanent archive of “Les Cuivre Français”. The group is also a training ground for young musicians learning the art of chamber music and orchestral brass playing.



Alessi Seminar Mock Audition Panel
Principal trombonist of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Jörgen van Rijen is also much in demand as a soloist with a special commitment to promoting his instrument, developing new repertoire for the trombone and bringing the existing repertoire to a broader audience. He is a specialist on both the modern and baroque trombone. He has performed as a soloist in most European countries, as well as the United States, Canada, Japan, China, Korea, Russia,Singapore and Australia and performed concertos with orchestras including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Czech Philharmonic, the Rotterdam Philharmonic, Combattimento Consort Amsterdam and the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra.
In the coming seasons Jörgen will appear as a soloist with orchestras such as the Taiwan Philharmonic, Nagoya Philharmonic, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, and on tour in Japan with Michel Becquet. Jörgen was awarded the Netherlands Music Prize in 2004, the highest distinction in the field of music, by the Dutch Ministry of Culture. In 2006 he received the prestigious Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award, which is presented yearly to a selection of the most promising and talented young international soloists and ensembles. He has won other major prizes, including first prizes at the international trombone competitions of Toulon and Guebwiller.
In a review of his first CD, the music magazine ‘Luister’ wrote: ‘Van Rijen is a real ambassador of his instrument, which is still not often used as a virtuoso brass instrument among composers. But there are not that many trombonists who reach the brilliant level of Van Rijen. In sound, dynamic, colour, musical understanding and expressiveness, Van Rijen is unequalled…’.
Many new pieces have been written for Jörgen, including a trombone concerto by Theo Verbey, commissioned by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. In the season 2010 / 2011 he will appear in concerts with the Combattimento Consort Amsterdam and the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra. In the spring of 2012 Jörgen has premiered a trombone concerto by Kalevi Aho that was written for him as a commission from the Borletti-Buitoni Trust, with concerts with the The Hague Philharmonic, the Oulu Sinfonia in Finland and the BBC Symphony Orchestra. About that last concert The Times wrote: “… van Rijen and Aho turned the trombone into a fount of melodic grace and gambolling, cradled over four generous movements by an equally refined orchestra…”
Plans for the future include new commissions by Florian Maier and James MacMillan. Jörgen teaches at the Amsterdam Conservatory and has been appointed International Visiting Professor at the Royal Academy of Music, London. He is also an active chamber musician. He was one of the founders of the New Trombone Collective and the RCO Brass. He plays exclusively on instruments built by Antoine Courtois and has released 3 CDs on the label Channel Classics.




Alessi Seminar Auditors Coordinator
Vincent Lepape was born in Rouen 21 March 1972. He began his musical education in this city with Gilbert Moisand and pursued with Jacques Mauger before moving at the age of 16 to the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris. There he studied with Gilles Millière and also won First Trombone Prize and two First Chamber Music Awards in the class of Jean Douay. He perfected his training with Yves Demarle at the Paris National Conservatory of Music and received in 1992 an award for Excellence.
He collaborates with the most important orchestras such as the Orchestre National de France, Orchestre de Paris, the Paris Opera, the Opéra de Lyon, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, the Palau de les Arts (Valencia) Moscow Orchestra, Orchestre de Lyon, Orchestre de Cluj (Romania), the Montecarlo Orchestra, Opera Naples, Andras Schiff chamber orchestra “Capella Andrea Barca.”
In 1994, he won the competition for solo trombone in the orchestra of the Royal Theatre in Turin (Teatro Regio Torino), founded by conductor Arturo Toscanini and directed since 2007 by Gianandrea Noseda. With this orchestra he has made several recordings for Deutsche Grammophon and Chandos and participates in numerous tours during which he played in important venues (Carnegie Hall, Suntory Hall, Wiener Konzerthaus, Dresda, Edimburg .. .).
In 2002, he interpreted the first Italian performance of “Symphony for Trombone and Orchestra” by Ernest Bloch under the direction of Alexander Anisimov.
Vincent Lepape is a founding member of the brass quintet “Pentabrass” created in 1998 with whom he has recorded four CDs – Suite Impromptu (SCM Records Italy, 2001), Fred Mills and Pentabrass Quintet (Mark Records Ny Usa, 2008), To Fred with Love, the World’s Finest brass Players pay Tribute to Fred Mills (AppleJazz Records, 2010) and a recording with the participation of Adam Frey. With this ensemble, he has participated in over 300 concerts in America, Asia and Europe, among others at the Moscow Conservatory, the University of Georgia (USA), at the Festival di Jeju (South Korea), the Festival of Cartagena (Colombia), the Stresa Festival (Italy), the Brass Festival in Limoges. The Pentabrass Quintet held for 9 years (2000-2009) the “Pentabrass Festival” featuring world famous soloists and an international brass faculty, featuring world-renowned trombonists.
In 2009, he participated with his quintet, alongside Mnozil, Spanish Brass, Epsilon and Belgian Brass at the European Brass Orchestra conducted by Sylvain Cambreling and chaired by Pierre Boulez.
In 2012, he also founded the “Quartetto Italiano di Tromboni” with Matteo De Luca (Suisse Romande Orchestra), Devid Ceste and Diego Di Mario (RAI orchestra). They appear in many concerts in Europe and hold several master classes.
He regularly performs as a soloist throughout the world (Brazil, Colombia, Spain, France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany).
He participated on the CD “Trombonists Antoine Courtois play Jean-Michel Defaye” distributed by Harmonia Mundi (2015). He also recorded a solo with Jean-Efflam Bavouzet in the last CD of Brigitte Fontaine” I have the honor of being “(Universal, 2013).
He was invited as soloist at the Mediterranean Trombone Festival of Marseille (July 2015) and the Lausanne Trombone Festival (February 2016). His first solo CD will appear soon on Summit Records (USA).http://www.summitrecords.com
Vincent Lepape teaches trombone at numerous courses and academies such as Trombone and Kitchen in Auch, Spanish Brass Academy, 33 ° Curso de Verao di Brazilia (Brazil), Brassurround (Spain), Caluire Course, MC Festival Pereira (Colombia) , Internship Evian Fiatti Festival Novara (Italy), Alsace trombone Festival.
An International teacher, he has taught since 2007 at the Pôle Superior Conservatory of Aosta Valley. Students taking courses come from all over Italy. Many of his students are teachers themselves in the most important Italian institutions. But his class also attracts musicians from France, the United States, Japan, Spain or Colombia. He was invited with his class to represent Italy at the International Trombone Festival 2012 in Paris and Strasbourg and also at the European Trombone 2013.
He is actively involved in the success of his students, who win many auditions and competitions in the best orchestras such as: Orchestre National des Pays de la Loire, Luzerner Sinfonieorchester, Orquestra Amazonas Philharmonic Manaus, Teatro Carlo Felice in Genoa), KZN Philharmonic Durban orchestra, Teatro Regio Torino, Arena di Verona, Maggio Fiorentino.
Since 2011, Vincent Lepape is the artistic director of the festival MasterBrass Palazzolo sull’Oglio (http://www.masterbrass.it/) where he invites some of the biggest international trombone soloists (Stefan Schulz, bass trombone in the Berliner Philarmoniquer, Michel Becquet), and chamber groups. In this framework, he organizes an annual week of concerts around the trombone. Annually, a CD containing the best moments of the festival is recorded. The fourth CD from the festival is distributed by Editions Aldebaran, as will be the fifth edition.
He is regularly invited to participate in numerous juries and competitions, including those of the Lyon Conservatoire, Geneva Hem Hem Lausanne, International Competition Chieri, International Concours d’Aosta.
He plays tenor trombone legend AC420-R and alto trombone 131RI



Alessi Seminar Director of Trombone Choirs
Nicola Ferro graduated with highest honors in 2011 from the Naples Conservatory. He was raised in a musical family and began his musical studies on the piano. He later began studying trombone and in 1996 received his degree in trombone from the Salerno Conservatory. He has studied privately with world renowned teachers of the calibre of Ian Bousfield, Charles Vernon, Jacques Mauger, Andrea Conti, Early Anderson and many others. He has performed in Italy and on international tours with the Venice La Fenice Opera Orchestra, the Rome Santa Cecilia National Academy Symphony Orchestra, the Palermo Teatro Massimo Opera Orchestra, the Turin Teatro Regio Opera Orchestra, the Rome Opera Orchestra, the Naples San Carlo Opera Orchestra under the direction of Riccardo Muti, Michael Güttler, Lorin Maazel, Daniel Oren, Antonio Pappano, George Prêtre, etc.
He has participated in numerous nationally broadcast television productions on the RAI network. As a very prolific composer and arranger he has many CDs to his credit including “Psycoldelice 2008” with MEG, “I Signori Chonda” 2002-3 for Sony records, “Create” 2007, “Earth Games” 2012, “Caliente” 2013 (featuring Joseph Alessi) all for Summit Records. He has been commissioned works for trombone by Christian Lindeberg, Joseph Alessi, Jonathan Whitaker, Peter Ellefson, Massimo LaRosa. He has taught at the conservatories of Salerno, Matera, Cosenza and is presently Trombone Professor at the Vibo Valentia Conservatory.