Oboe Merit Awards

in Honor of

Ralph Gomberg






GombergAt he age of fourteen, Mr. Gomberg was the youngest student ever to be accepted by the renowned oboe teacher, Marcel Tabuteau. Following his studies at the Curtis Institute of Music, he was appointed at the age of eighteen principal oboe of the All-American Youth Orchestra by Leopold Stokowski. After his service in the Navy in World War II he embarked on a distinguished career, occupying principal oboe positions in such orchestras as the Baltimore Symphony, the New York City Center Orchestra under Leonard Bernstein, and the Mutual Broadcasting Orchestra, at which time he co-founded the New York Woodwind Quintet. In 1950, Mr. Gomberg joined the Boston Symphony Orchestra as principal oboe and served with distinction until his retirement in 1987. He was a founding member of the Boston Symphony Chamber Players and taught at New England Conservatory and Boston University, where as Adjunct Professor he retired after fifty years.

"Oboe playing, like bird watching and taffy pulling, is a passion that seems to run in families. The earliest famous oboe clan was that of Frenchman Jean Philidor, who played at the court of Louis XIV; after him, seven other Philidors put lip to reed. Today the reigning oboe family in the U.S. goes by the name of Gomberg: Harold, 42, is first oboist of the New York Philharmonic; Ralph, 37, is first oboist of the Boston Symphony."
                                      Time Magazine, 1958