Few trombonists are as eminently qualified as Ken Shifrin in both the professional and academic fields. A native of Washington, D.C., his playing was described by the Vienna Kurier as "brilliant, with almost unbelievable beauty of tone, artistry and elegance".

In 1982 he was appointed Principal Trombonist of Great Britain's City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra by Chief Conductor Sir Simon Rattle who declared him "not only one of the most able trombonists in my experience but also an intelligent and wide-ranging musician". Prior to coming to Britain he held the position of Principal Trombonist with both the Radio Stuttgart Orchestra and the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra. Since 1994 he has been the artistic director of the international touring ensemble, Posaune Voce Trio, which specializes in the performance of newly discovered baroque works featuring the alto trombone in a solo role with voice. In the U.S.A. he was a member of the popular rock band the Atlantics, performing for such artistes as Michael Jackson, Olivia Newton-John, Natalie Cole, Paul Anka, the Drifters, Pearl Bailey and Andy Williams. He is much in demand as a guest soloist, having appeared with the U.S. Navy Band, the U.S. Army band, at the Smetana International Music Festival, the Malta International Arts Festival, the Dvorak Summer Festival, the Edinburgh Festival and the London Barbican, as well as presenting recitals and master classes in Vienna, Prague, Budapest, Krakow, Bratislava, Kiev, Cardiff, Oxford and Washington D.C. Dr Shifrin has premiered a number of works, including the first American and British performances of the Leopold Mozart "Concerto for Alto Trombone".

Moreover, with a PhD in musicology from Oxford University, Ken Shifrin was the recipient of a British Academy Humanities Research Board's Scholarship and the Oxford University Press' Music and Letters Award, as well as being named the Halstead Scholar by the Board of the Oxford University Music Faculty. Since 2000 he has been a British Exchange Scholar for the Czech Academy of Science in Prague and has presented papers at musicology meetings on both sides of the Atlantic. He is the managing director of Virgo Music Publishers and a clinician for Voigt Handcrafted Brass Music Instruments of Markneukirchen, Germany. Dr Shifrin is listed in the International Who's Who of Music.

In 2005 the Lord Chancellor of Great Britain appointed Ken Shifrin a Magistrate for England and Wales.

“The soloist Ken Shifrin played brilliantly with almost unbelievable beauty of tone, artistry and elegance. A seemingly effortless rendition full of effects, technical bravura and feeling."
The Vienna Kurier

"Splendid trombone playing."
The Guardian

“Elegant and virtuoso trombone playing.”
The Prague Post

"Not only is he one of the most able trombonists in my experience but also an intelligent and wide-ranging musician."
Sir Simon Rattle

"A one-man tour-de-force."
Colonel L.B. Shelburne, Jr
United States Army Band, Leader and Commander

"Ken Shifrin demonstrated outstanding instrumental ability as well as excellent qualities of musicianship.”
Charles Dutoit

"An extremely good performer.”
Iannis Xenakis

"A superb performance by this marvellous player.”
Joseph Horowitz

Dr Shifrin can be contacted c/o Nigel Pennington, Manager, at or Orion House Artists Management at


Becaud/Diamond, arr. R Willis: Love on the Rocks

Ravel: Solo from Bolero
Live in concert with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra,
Sir Simon Rattle conductor

Ravel: Pavane pour une Infante Defunte