© Todd Rosenberg Photography 2014

Trombone – Chicago Symphony Orchestra; Director – CSO Brass; Professor of Trombone – Northwestern University; Chicago Chamber Musicians; Visiting Artist ANAM


“Our musicians are scattered across the globe, north and south, a virtual musical diaspora. How extraordinary to gather them together to celebrate their achievements, a thirst for excellence and a witness to the unique Australian character of adventure and discovery.”


Chicago Symphony Trombonist Michael Mulcahy has appeared as a soloist and teacher in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, Holland, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Russia, Japan, China, Argentina New Zealand and Australia.

He has appeared as a soloist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Pierre Boulez in music of Elliot Carter, and most recently with Daniel Barenboim in Leopold Mozart’s Concerto for Alto Trombone. Other solo appearances include the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Hilversum Radio Symphony Orchestra, and on tour with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. In October 2016, Michael gave the world premiere of Five Hallucinations by Carl Vine, a solo concerto co-commissioned by the Chicago Symphony and the Sydney Symphony. In 2018 he will be featured as soloist in the world premiere of the Low Brass Concerto of Jennifer Higdon with the Chicago Symphony and Riccardo Muti.

Sir Georg Solti appointed Michael Mulcahy to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 1989. He is Principal Trombone with Chicago’s Music of the Baroque and the Grand Teton Music Festival. His orchestral career began in 1976 as Principal Trombone of the Tasmanian Symphony. A year later he attained the same chair with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. Michael left Australia in 1981 to pursue his career in Europe where he became Solo Trombone with the Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra.

Michael is the winner of several international competitions, among them the Australian Broadcasting Corporation Instrumental Competition, the ARD International Music Competition in Munich, the Viotti International Competition in Italy and the International Instrumental Competition in Markneukirchen, in the former East Germany.

Michael Mulcahy’s interest in conducting was sparked by an invitation from Westdeutscher Rundfunk to direct a concert of music of Arvo Pärt. He serves as Director of the CSO BRASS, as well conducting regularly for the Grand Teton Music Festival and guest appearances for the Sydney Symphony, Tasmanian Symphony, New World Symphony and the Royal Danish Orchestra. He has also served as Music Director for National Music Camp in Australia.

He was named Senior Lecturer of the Canberra School of Music at the Australian National University in 1987. In 1999 he was appointed to lead the trombone department at the Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University. Michael is Visiting Artist at the Australian National Academy of Music in Melbourne. He has also been an Artist in Residence at Indiana University, and Wiley Housewright Scholar at Florida State University. He has taught and conducted at Daniel Barenboim’s East West Divan workshop for young Arab and Israeli musicians in Seville.

Every July Michael leads his Summer Trombone Performance Master Class at Northwestern University.

Michael has regularly played with the AWO and joins the orchestra again in 2018 under his full time conductor at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Maestro Riccardo Muti.

In late 2017 Michael recorded a series of interviews with AWO Artistic Director Alexander Briger AO about Maestro Muti and the AWO.

  • Twitter
  • Facebook