David Shifrin

David Shifrin received early musical training at the Interlochen Center for the Arts in 1963.[1] He attended the Music Academy of the West summer conservatory in 1968[2] and later graduated from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia in 1971,[3] where he studied with Anthony Gigliotti.

Shifrin has appeared as a concerto soloist with many major orchestras around the world, including the Philadelphia Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, Houston Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, Hawaii Symphony and the Phoenix Symphony in the United States, and internationally with orchestras in Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Japan, Korea and Taiwan.[4] Shifrin commissioned and premiered a concerto by Pulitzer Prize winning composer Stephen Albert with the Philadelphia Orchestra during its 1991-1992 season, and in 1995 he premiered Ezra Laderman's Concerto for Clarinet and Strings with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra.

In 1984, Shifrin commissioned the construction of a special elongated clarinet, the basset clarinet, to enable the playing of Mozart's Clarinet Concerto and Clarinet Quintet in their original form. Shifrin's 1985 recording of the Mozart Clarinet Concerto and Quintet with Gerard Schwarz and the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra was named "Record of the Year" by Stereo Review magazine.

Shifrin has also received critical acclaim as a recitalist, performing at such venues as Alice Tully Hall, Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall and the 92nd Street Y in New York City, as well as at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. A much sought after chamber musician, he has collaborated frequently with such distinguished ensembles and artists as the Tokyo String Quartet and the Emerson String Quartet, Wynton Marsalis, and pianists Emanuel Ax and André Watts.

An artist member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center since 1989, David Shifrin served as its Artistic Director from 1992 to 2004. He has toured extensively throughout the United States with CMSLC and hosted and performed in several nationally televised broadcasts on PBS’s Live from Lincoln Center. He has been the Artistic Director of Chamber Music Northwest in Portland, Oregon since 1981, and is also the Artistic Director of the Phoenix Chamber Music Festival.

Shifrin has served as Principal Clarinetist with the Cleveland Orchestra, American Symphony Orchestra (under the direction of Leopold Stokowski), Honolulu Symphony, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the New York Chamber Symphony.

Shifrin joined the faculty of the Yale School of Music in 1987 and was appointed Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Yale and Yale's annual concert series at Carnegie Hall in September 2008. He has also served on the faculties of The Juilliard School, University of Southern California, University of Michigan, Cleveland Institute of Music and the University of Hawaii. In 2007 he was awarded an honorary professorship at China's Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing.

David Shifrin has been instrumental in broadening the repertoire for clarinet and orchestra by commissioning and championing the works of 20th- and 21st-century American composers including John Adams, Joan Tower, Stephen Albert, Bruce Adolphe, Ezra Laderman, Lalo Schifrin, David Schiff, John Corigliano, Bright Sheng and Ellen Taaffe Zwilich. In 2020, he will premiere a new clarinet concerto that he commissioned from David Ludwig at Chamber Music Northwest in Portland.

Shifrin performs on a Lumière cocobolo wood clarinet made by Backun Musical Services in Vancouver, Canada, and uses Légère Reeds exclusively.

Artist's Summit Concerts
No items found.
Artist Website

Season 3 Concerts

Season Three Opening Concert
September 21, 2023 7:00 PM
Suncrest United Methodist Church
Sep 21
Carnival of the Animals: A Family Concert Celebration
September 22, 2023 6:00 PM
Lyell B Clay Concert Theatre at West Virginia University College of Creative Arts
Sep 22
Sweet Serenades at the Terrace
November 9, 2023 7:00 PM
The Terrace at West Virginia Botanic Garden
Nov 9
Season Three Opening Concert
September 21, 2023
Suncrest United Methodist Church

Join our Season Three opening concert celebration!!

Sep 21
Season calendar