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Ralph Skiano


DSO Affiliate Applied Faculty, Clarinet
[email protected]

Ralph Skiano currently serves as Principal Clarinetist of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra after serving in the same position in the Cincinnati Symphony, the Richmond Symphony, and the Des Moines Metro Opera. He has also appeared as guest principal clarinetist of the Seattle Symphony and the Cleveland Orchestra. Critics have praised him for his solo and orchestral performances, describing him as having “wisdom beyond his years” and the ability to bring “the audience closer to the stage, transforming the performance into more of an intimate storytelling” - Huffington Post.

Mr. Skiano has toured extensively throughout Europe and Asia with the Detroit Symphony and the Cincinnati Symphony and can be heard in several recent recordings released by the Detroit Symphony’s label “Live From Orchestra Hall”, including the entire cycle of Brahms Symphonies, Symphonies 4, 5 and 6 by Tchaikovsky, and the Grammy-nominated recording of Copland’s Third Symphony. In addition, he can be seen and heard through an innovative high-definition video archive created by the Detroit Symphony called “DSO Replay”.

Mr. Skiano has been involved in numerous music festivals, including the Mainly Mozart Festival, The Peninsula Music Festival, the Britt Music Festival, and Festival Lyrique-en-Mer. As a soloist, he has been featured with ensembles in the United States, France, Germany, and Switzerland. In 2010, Skiano was a guest artist at the Oklahoma Clarinet Symposium and he was a featured soloist with the Baton Rouge Symphony at the 2014 International Clarinet Association Convention. Mr. Skiano has also been featured several times as a soloist with the Detroit Symphony. 

Always passionate about connecting to audiences, Skiano founded The Atlantic Chamber Ensemble in 2012, with the mission of finding new ways to help people build meaningful connections to classical music through innovative programming and alternative performance formats. The ensemble continues to serve as a testing ground for new ideas and has successfully generated new audiences for classical music in Virginia.

Mr. Skiano has served on the faculty of the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and at the schools of music at James Madison University and the College of William and Mary. His students currently have positions in several professional military bands and orchestras in this country. An active presenter and clinician, he continues to present masterclasses and workshops at universities all across the United States. His two new books, “Little Scores for Audition Success”, and “Behind the Screen - A Winner’s Guide to Preparing Your Next Audition” are both available on Amazon.

‚ÄčAs a Buffet Group and Vandoren Artist, Ralph Skiano performs exclusively on Buffet Crampon clarinets and Vandoren reeds and mouthpieces.

School of Music, Theatre and Dance

Varner Hall, Room 207
371 Varner Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4485
(location map)
Academic Office: (248) 370-2030
Box Office: (248) 370-3013
Fax: (248) 370-2041