Philip Farkas

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Philip Farkas

Philip Farkas (born March 5, 1914 , † December 21, 1992 ) was an American horn player and co-founder of the International Horn Society .

As a child, he first received lessons on the piano . At twelve, he joined the Boy Scouts of America who were looking for someone to play the flugelhorn . He took lessons from a neighbor who played jazz trumpet .

When he was 15, symptoms of asthma appeared , which is why his parents sent him to a school wind orchestra. The only instruments available at the moment were the bass drum and tuba . He picked up the tuba, but since it was too bulky for him, the conductor advised him to switch to the horn . From 1927 he took horn lessons with Earl Stricker and studied from 1930 at Calumet High School. He also received private lessons from Louis Dufrasne , a famous horn player at the time.

In 1933 the first engagement as principal horn followed in the newly founded Kansas City Philharmonic Orchestra . From 1936 to 1941 he was principal horn in the Chicago Symphony Orchestra , from 1941 to 1945 in the Cleveland Orchestra and from 1945 to 1946 in the Boston Symphony Orchestra . After a brief period in which he played again in the Cleveland Orchestra, he returned to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and stayed there until 1960.

From 1960 he was Professor of Horn at the Indiana University School of Music. In 1978 he was awarded an honorary doctorate in music from Eastern Michigan University. His teaching positions have also taken him to Northwestern University, the Cleveland Institute, the Kansas City Conservatory, DePaul University and Roosevelt University .

He was a co-founder and honorary member of the International Horn Society (IHS).

Farkas designed the Farkas horn and some mouthpieces for Holton . Among other things, he founded a publishing house, Wind Music, Inc.

He has authored several publications, including The Art of French Horn Playing , also known as the Hornists ' Bible .


  • The Art of French Horn Playing
  • The Art of Brass Playing
  • The Art of Musicianship