Julian Bliss

Clarinet

Biography

Julian Bliss is one of the world’s finest clarinettists, excelling as a concerto soloist, chamber musician, jazz artist, masterclass leader and tireless musical explorer. He has inspired a generation of young players as creator of his Conn-Selmer range of affordable clarinets, and introduced a substantial new audience to his instrument.

Julian started playing the clarinet aged 4, going on to study at the University of Indiana and in Germany under Sabine Meyer.  

In recital and chamber music he has played at most of the world’s leading festivals and venues including Wigmore Hall and Lincoln Center. He has appeared as soloist with a range of international orchestras including São Paolo Symphony, Chamber Orchestra of Paris, Auckland Philharmonia, BBC Philharmonic, London Philharmonic and Royal Philharmonic orchestras.

In 2012 he established the Julian Bliss Septet, inspired by Benny Goodman, and released the first Septet album in 2012. They have performed to packed houses at Ronnie Scott’s (London), the Concertgebouw (Amsterdam) and across the USA, including Jazz at Lincoln Center, and have gone on to explore the music of Gershwin and his Tin Pan Alley contemporaries.

Album releases include his recording of Mozart and Nielsen’s concertos with the Royal Northern Sinfonia. His latest chamber discs include David Bruce’s Gumboots for clarinet and string quartet, plus the Mozart and Weber quintets, with the Carducci Quartet.

Recent highlights include concerto performances with the Northern Chamber Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, an extensive US tour with his septet, and concerts with the Carducci Quartet.

 

Recent News

Reviews

“It isn’t just his technique, though that is astonishing enough. It’s the wit, poise and vivacity in his playing. In short, it is the pure intuition leading him straight to the heart of what he plays.”

The Times

“Poise, agility and alertness permeate these winning, infectious performances.”

BBC Music Magazine

More Reviews

“It isn’t just his technique, though that is astonishing enough. It’s the wit, poise and vivacity in his playing. In short, it is the pure intuition leading him straight to the heart of what he plays.”

The Times (UK)

“Poise, agility and alertness permeate these winning, infectious performances.”

BBC Music Magazine

“It would be an understatement to say that Bliss passes with flying colors. He exhibits an extraordinarily pure tone, remarkably even throughout the range of the instrument. His command at registral and dynamic extremes is almost preternatural. And, he has a transcendent technique. Bliss must no longer be regarded merely as a great talent, but rather as a consummate master of his instrument.”

Fanfare Magazine

“We have a new shooter on the jazz clarinet front and his name is Julian Bliss…From classical to jazz to making music affordable for the next generation, Julian Bliss and his Septet certainly have earned their five stars!”

Critical Jazz

“All the works collected here showcase the attractive qualities of Bliss’s playing, rich and fruity in the showier passages, effortless in the demanding runs made by Nielsen in particular and, at the sublime moments, appropriately mellifluous and sonorous.”

Classic FM

“Bliss is indeed amongst the clarinet greats, displaying incredible technical skills. He was a joy to watch as he transitioned between registers with ease.”

Limelight Magazine