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John Ferrillo

Principal Oboe, Boston Symphony Orchestra
Mildred B. Remis chair, endowed in perpetuity

John Ferrillo headshot with oboe


John Ferrillo joined the Boston Symphony Orchestra as principal oboe at the start of the 2001 Tanglewood season, occupying the Mildred B. Remis Principal Oboe Chair, and having previously appeared with the orchestra several times in previous seasons as a guest performer. From 1986 to 2001 he was principal oboe of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. Ferrillo grew up in Bedford, Massachusetts, and played in the Greater Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra. He is a graduate of the Curtis Institute, where he studied with John de Lancie and received his diploma and artist’s certificate. He also studied with John Mack at the Blossom Festival and has participated in the Marlboro, Craftsbury, and Monadnock festivals. Prior to his appointment at the Metropolitan Opera, Ferrillo was second oboe of the San Francisco Symphony, and was a faculty member at Illinois State University and West Virginia State University. He also formerly served as a faculty member at the Mannes School of Music and Juilliard School of Music in New York City and has taught and performed at the Aspen and Waterloo festivals. He currently serves on the faculties of New England Conservatory, Boston University, and Boston University Tanglewood Institute. His previous BSO appearances as soloist have included Ligeti’s Double Concerto for Flute and Oboe with BSO colleague Elizabeth Rowe; Frank Martin’s Concerto for Seven Winds, Timpani, Percussion, and String Orchestra, also with his BSO colleagues; Richard Strauss’s Concerto for Oboe; two collaborations with violinist Pinchas Zukerman at Tanglewood in music of J.S. Bach; Wayne Barlow’s The Winter’s Past, led by Leonard Slatkin in a 2014 Tanglewood program celebrating the conductor’s 70th birthday; Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante for Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon, and Horn in E-flat major, with BSO colleagues on the opening program of the 2014-15 season; and in May 2018, Marcello’s Concerto for Oboe in C minor with Moritz Gnann conducting. As principal oboe of the BSO, Ferrillo is also a faculty member at the Tanglewood Music Center and a member of the Boston Symphony Chamber Players, with whom he can be heard in BSO Classics recordings of Mozart’s Quartet for Oboe and Strings in F Major; William Bolcom’s Serenata Notturna; and Dutilleux’s Citations for Oboe, Harpsichord, Double Bass, and Percussion.

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