The trombone is the only brass instrument with a slide. Instead of using valves to change pitches, you move the slide to adjust the length of the instrument and play different pitches. Trombones have almost nine feet of tubing. An important member of the trombone family is the bass trombone. It is larger and can play lower pitches which is why the bass trombone player usually sits right next to the tuba player.
R. Douglas Wright
Principal Trombone, Star Tribune Chair
William C. and Corinne J. Dietrich Chair
Bass Trombone, Rosemary and David Good Fellow
R. Douglas Wright, the Minnesota Orchestra’s principal trombone since 1995, was featured as soloist in April 2007 in Kalevi Aho’s Symphony No. 9 for Trombone and Orchestra, which he reprised during summer 2008. Wright has performed a variety of trombone concertos with the Orchestra, and in 2002 gave the world premiere performances of Kurt Schwertsik’s Trombone Concerto, a work written for him. He is active as a solo recitalist and chamber musician, performing regularly in the Orchestra's Sommerfest chamber concert. In April 2011 he performed James Stephenson’s Sonata for Trombone and Piano on the Orchestra’s Chamber Music at MacPhail series.
A native of Sahalahti, Finland, Kari Sundström joined the Minnesota Orchestra in 1996 after having been a member of the Helsinki Philharmonic.
Sundström graduated from the Juilliard School of Music, where he studied with Per Brevig. From 1990 to 1995 he performed as a member of the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra in Finland and served as professor of trombone at the Tampere Conservatory. In 1991 Sundström was named Finland’s brass player of the year.
Andrew Chappell joined the Minnesota Orchestra as bass trombonist in fall 2014. He previously was bass trombonist of the Rochester Philharmonic, the Santa Fe Opera and the New World Symphony. He performs regularly with the Burning River Brass ensemble and the Slap-Happy Whackamole Steam Gang.
Chappell, a San Francisco native, earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Oberlin College and Rice University, respectively. He earned a degree in hard knocks from teaching 40 middle school trombonists private lessons for two years. Chappell has performed with orchestras including the Houston Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Finnish Radio Symphony, Malaysian Philharmonic, Nörkopping Symphony, Toronto Symphony and the National Ballet of Canada Orchestra, as well as with the revival of Les Miserables and with singer-songwriter Feist at the ceremony for Canada’s Juno Awards. He also performed under the baton of Carol Channing for his high school's 100-year anniversary.
As a native of Atlanta, trombone player Lovrick Gary began his musical studies through the Atlanta Symphony Talent Development Program. As a fellow, he studied with Atlanta Symphony members Nathan Zgonc and Brian Hecht. He obtained a bachelor’s degree from the Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University, where he studied with Dr. Bradley Palmer. While a student at the Schwob School, Gary was named a finalist in the American Trombone Workshop National Solo Competition in 2017 Division I and 2019 in Division II. He has also performed several concerts with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. He has had opportunities to be a part of multiple recording projects, including one in which he is featured in a quartet on Ash, the latest project of the New York Philharmonic’s associate principal trombone Colin Williams. Additionally, he can be heard on Columbus State University Trombone Ensemble’s recent album Full Tilt. He also enjoys teaching and is currently the Trombone and Bass Trombone Teaching Artist with the Atlanta Music Project.