Michele Zukovsky

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Michele Zukovsky (née Bloch) is an American clarinetist and longest serving female woodwind player in the history of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, serving from 1961 at the age of 18 until her retirement on December 20, 2015.[1][2]


Born and raised in the Los Feliz district of Los Angeles, she played alongside and later succeeded her father, Kalman Bloch, as the principal clarinetist of the L.A. Philharmonic.

She is related through her mother Frances to famed violin virtuoso Jascha Heifetz.

Her brother Gregory Bloch (deceased 1988) played violin and mandolin for the Italian rock band Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM), the American progressive-rock bands String Cheese and It's a Beautiful Day, on "Gilda LIve" on Broadway, and with the Saturday Night Live Band.


Zukovsky has performed worldwide, including with the Boston Pops, the St. Petersburg String Quartet, the Lincoln Center Chamber Players, and at the Mostly Mozart Festival.[3] She taught at the California Institute of the Arts. She currently teaches clarinet at the University of Southern California.[3]

She premiered John Williams' Clarinet Concerto with the Boston Pops in 1991.[4] In 1986, she premiered a version by Luciano Berio of the Sonata in F minor, Op. 120 #1, by Johannes Brahms, arranged for clarinet and orchestra under commission from the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.

As a recording artist, Zukovsky has released several works, including the most recent Simeon Bellison: The Arrangements for Clarinet (Summit Records, 2008), a compilation recording that includes arrangements by the Russian-American Simeon Bellison and Jewish-themed works by other composers.[5]

As a film industry studio clarinetist, Zukovsky played of several films scored by John Williams.

She served on the faculty of the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California and the Pasadena Conservatory of Music.[6]


  1. ^ http://graphics.latimes.com/meet-the-phil-interactive/
  2. ^ http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/arts/culture/la-et-cm-michele-zukovsky-clarinetist-los-angeles-philharmonic-20150709-story.html
  3. ^ a b "Michele Zukovsky". Los Angeles Philharmonic. Archived from the original on 2009-08-02. Retrieved 2009-08-06.
  4. ^ "Michele Zukovsky". University of Southern California. Retrieved 2009-08-06.
  5. ^ "Michele Zukovsky | International Clarinet Association". International Clarinet Association. Retrieved 2018-03-10.
  6. ^ http://music.usc.edu/michele-zukovsky/