Mariss picks trombonist from a Linz garage

Mariss picks trombonist from a Linz garage


norman lebrecht

July 06, 2016

Lukas Gassner is 20 years old. Two years ago he was working as a car mechanic.

Lukas has just been named principal trombone of the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, whose music director is Mariss Jansons.

Lukas, a student at the Bruckner University in his home town, Linz, only got into the local academy orchestra last year. But he was the standout performer at the Munich auditions and from September he’s going to be playing in what his teacher calls the Real Madrid of German orchestras.

lukas gassner

photo: Volker Weihbold


  • Andreas B. says:

    afaik not principal, but Wechselposaune. still an amazing achievement!

  • Gerhard says:

    I can just picture Mariss Jansons searching the Linz backyards for a trombone, not quite sure whether he needs to fill a principal or another position … But congratulations and best wishes to the winner! And I do like “Real Madrid of German orchestras”.

    • John Kelly says:

      Real Madrid! Munich – the home of Bayern Munich and of the BRSO. Interesting choice of teams to associate himself with!

    • Mr Oakmountain says:

      This Real Madrid quote is from his trombone teacher, Josef Kürner, not Gassner himself.

  • Max Grimm says:

    From the linked article:
    “Lukas, du spielst ab sofort in der Champions League. Du bist Innenverteidiger bei Real Madrid”, lautet der fußballaffine Versuch einer Erklärung seines Posaunenprofessors Josef Kürner.
    (which roughly translates to: “Lukas, from now on you’re playing in the Champions League. You’re a centre-back with Real Madrid”, is his trombone professor’s football-oriented attempt at an explanation.)

    Besides, I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for an Austrian to say anything positive about the FC Bayern München 😉

  • Marg says:

    Good for him! All the best for a career in music and not car repair!

  • James says:

    From a garage? Let’s hope it wasn’t a rusty trombone.