This section is a tribute webpage honoring the extraordinary career of Roger Louis Voisin. Video, audio, and legacy photographs will be added to this section during 2020 so please come back and visit.
Roger Louis Voisin (1918-2008)
Among the most influential trumpet performers and teachers of the twentieth century, Voisin joined the Boston Symphony Orchestra as assistant principal trumpet in 1935 at age seventeen, and became principal trumpet in 1950. He performed in the Boston Symphony for 38 years, until 1973. During this period, he was also principal trumpet with the Boston Pops Orchestra.
Voisin moved to the United States as a child when his father, René Voisin (1893–1952), was brought to the Boston Symphony as fourth trumpet by Sergei Koussevitzky in 1928. He was initially a student of his father, but he later studied with the Boston Symphony’s second trumpet Marcel LaFosse (1894–1969) and principal trumpet Georges Mager (1885–1950). He also studied solfege with Boston Symphony contrabassist Gaston Dufresne. Click here to have Roger tell the tale of how he became a member of the Boston Symphony at age 17.
He is credited with premiere performances of many major works for trumpet including Paul Hindemith‘s Sonata for Trumpet and Piano (with Hindemith at the piano), and Alan Hovhannes‘ Prayer of St. Gregory. He is also credited with the US premiere of Alexander Arutiunian‘s Trumpet Concerto, performing with the Boston Pops Orchestra in 1966. Leroy Anderson‘s A Trumpeter’s Lullaby was written for Roger Voisin in 1949, and first recorded with Arthur Fiedler conducting Voisin and the Boston Pops Orchestra in 1950. Leroy Anderson states that “(A Trumpeter’s Lullaby) had its beginning backstage at Symphony Hall in Boston. In addition to composing and conducting, I was arranger for the Boston Pops Orchestra for a number of years — and after one of the concerts I was sitting talking with the conductor Arthur Fiedler and the first trumpet of the Boston Pops, Roger Voisin. Suddenly Roger Voisin asked me why I didn’t write a trumpet solo for him to play with the orchestra that would be different from traditional trumpet solos which are all loud, martial or triumphant. After thinking it over, it occurred to me that I had never heard a lullaby for trumpet so I set out to write one — with a quiet melody based on bugle notes played by the trumpet and with the rest of the orchestra playing a lullaby background.”
He has also been involved with many early recordings and performances of both solo and orchestral works including J. S. Bach‘s Brandenburg Concerto #2, Béla Bartók‘s Concerto for Orchestra, Aaron Copland‘s Quiet City, Joseph Haydn‘s Concerto for Trumpet in Eb, Alexander Scriabin‘s The Poem of Ecstasy, Georg Philipp Telemann‘s Concerto for Trumpet in D, and Antonio Vivaldi‘s Concerto for Two Trumpets in C.
For more information, go to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roger_Voisin