Associate Principal Oboe Sherry Sylar joined the New York Philharmonic in 1984. Previously she performed with the Louisville Orchestra and taught at the University of Evansville in Indiana. She was among the select group of Philharmonic musicians who joined the orchestra that Leonard Bernstein conducted in the historic Freedom Concert at the falling of the Berlin Wall in 1989. In 2001 the Boston Symphony Orchestra invited her to perform solo principal oboe in tour performances led by Bernard Haitink, which concluded with a concert at Carnegie Hall, and in 2003 she substituted for an ailing principal oboist for the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France’s Carnegie Hall debut conducted by Myung-Whun Chung. She was also invited to China as a judge in the Beijing National Orchestra’s first-ever auditions. Also the oboe d’amore player for the New York Philharmonic, her featured solos on that instrument during the Orchestra’s Bach festival in March 2013 were praised in The New York Times.
Ms. Sylar earned her bachelor’s degree in music at Indiana University and her master’s degree from Northwestern University. She gives master classes internationally, has participated in the Aspen and Grand Teton Music Festivals, and performs chamber music regularly, including at Merkin Concert Hall and the 92nd Street Y. She is on the faculty of the Mannes College of Music.
“In junior high school I joined the band and started playing the flute. There were lots of flutes and fewer oboes. The oboe spoke to me.”