Xiao-Ming Han - Principal Horn of The German Radio Philharmonic Orchestra

Xiao-Ming Han - Principal Horn of The German Radio Philharmonic Orchestra

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At the age of 10 Xiao-Ming Han began studying horn. After graduating from the Academy affiliated with the China Central Philharmonic Orchestra and Beijing's Central Conservatory of Music at the age of 17, Xiao-Ming Han was appointed principal horn of the China Central Philharmonic Orchestra. In 1981 he was enrolled to study with Richard Mackey of the New England Conservatory on a full scholarship. In 1983 Han won the first prize of the International Horn Competition organized by the International Horn Society.

In 1984, upon receiving a scholarship from the Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst (DAAD), he went to Europe to further his studies with Prof. Ifor James at the Freiburg University of Music, and with Prof. Otto Schmitz at the Munich University of Music where he obtained his Master of Arts degree. Within three months after arrival in Germany, at age 22, Han was appointed principal horn of the Würzburg Philharmonic Orchestra and later that year principal horn of the German Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, under the baton of maestro Myung-whun Chung. Han has continued his career with the German Radio Philharmonic up to present time.

Han has performed with many celebrated conductors such including Leonard Bernstein, Georg Solti, Claudio Abbado, Lorin Maazel, Seiji Ozawa, Mariss Jansons and Christoph Eschenbach. He has been invited to various music festivals such as the Salzburg Music Festival, Würzburg Mozart Music Festival, Saito Kinen Festival, Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, Lucerne Festival, London Proms and the Marlboro Music Festival. Additionally, he has been invited as guest principal with the Berlin Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, the Bavarian, Hamburg, Cologne, Frankfurt, and Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestras, the Munich, Berlin, Hamburg, Cologne, and Düsseldorf Opera House Orchestras as well as the Mahler Chamber Orchestra.

In 1993 Han became the youngest and up to present time the only Asian professor for horn and chamber music in Germany at age of 30. He has been professor at the University of Music Saarland until 2011. In all those years, Han has shown great commitment to further horn education worldwide. Next to invitations for Master Classes in the USA, Australia, Japan, Singapore, and various countries in Europe, he has also been invited as regular guest professor at the Central Conservatory of Music (CCOM) in Beijing and the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. 

Amongst some of the recent highlights in his career, are the release of his Strauss and Mozart recordings by Oehms Classics in 2014 and 2017 consecutively, and the 2016 invitation as the judge in the most prestigious competition for horn, namely the ARD Competition in Munich.