Han began studying horn with his father, Xianguang Han, a renowned Chinese horn professor andprizewinner at the Geneva International Horn Competition in 1960. After graduating from the Academy affiliated with the China Central Philharmonic Orchestra and Beijing's Central Conservatory of Music at the age of 17, Xiao-Ming Han was appointed principal horn of the China Central Philharmonic Orchestra.During Seiji Ozawa's visit to China in 1979, maestro Osawa was impressed by young Xiao-Ming Han's musical talent and invited him to attend the Tanglewood Music Summer Institute in the United States. Consequently, in 1981 he was enrolled to study with Richard Mackey (member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra) of the New England Conservatory on a full scholarship. In 1983 Han won the first prize of the International Horn Competition organized by the International Horn Society.In 1984, upon receiving a scholarship from the Deutscher Akademischer AustauschDienst (DAAD), he went to Europe to further his studies with Prof. Ifor James at the Freiburg University of Music, and with Prof. Otto Schmitz at the Munich University of Music where he obtained his Master of Arts degree in 1986.Within three months after arrival in Germany, at age 22, Han was appointed principal horn of the Würzburg Philharmonic Orchestra and later that year principal horn of the German Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, under the baton of maestro Myung-whun Chung. Han has continued his career with the German Radio Philharmonic up to present time. Han has performed with many celebrated conductors such including Leonard Bernstein, Georg Solti, Claudio Abbado, Lorin Maazel, Seiji Ozawa, Mariss Jansons and Christoph Eschenbach. He has been invited to various music festivals such as the Salzburg Music Festival, Würzburg Mozart Music Festival, Saito Kinen Festival, Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, Lucerne Festival, London Proms and also famous the Marlboro Music Festival where he performed chamber music together with Midori Goto, Mitsuko Uchida, Hilary Hahn and many others. Additionally, he has been invited as guest principal with the Berlin Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, theBavarian, Hamburg, Cologne, Frankfurt, and Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestras, the Munich, Berlin, Hamburg, Cologne, and Düsseldorf Opera House Orchestras as well as the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. In 1993 Han became the youngest and up to present time the only Asian professor for horn and chamber music in Germany at age of 30. He has been professor at the University of Music Saarland until 2011. In all those years, Han has shown great commitment to further horn education worldwide. Next to invitations for Master Classes in the USA, Australia, Japan, Singapore,and various countries in Europe, he has also been invited as regular guest professor at the Central Conservatory of Music (CCOM) in Beijing and the Shanghai Conservatory of Music.Han has shown to possess great organizational skills to promote international collaboration in classical music. He held the position of Artistic Director of the annual Music Festival of the CCOM from 2004 to 2010, organized the first Chamber Music Festival in theworlds’ largest concert hall, namely the China National Center for the Performing Arts (NCPA) in Beijing, and was consequently asked to establish a new residence orchestra at the NCPA. Having taken a sabbatical from his position at the German Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, Han acted as the General Manager of the China NCPA Concert Hall Orchestra from 2010 to 2012. After the orchestra booked it's initial successes, Han returned to Germany to continue in the position as Principal Horn of the German Radio Philharmonic Orchestra.Since his return to the stage in Germany, Hanalsoincreased his guest performances worldwide.He toured with the Berlin Philharmonic in Europe and with the Royal Philharmonic in China,performed at the Surrey Hills International Music Festival, London and with the Sydney Opera Orchestra. He furthermore gave several solo, chamber music and orchestra performances in China, Taiwan, and Korea. Amongst some of the recent highlights in his career, are therelease of his Strauss and Mozart recordings by Oehms Classics in 2014 and 2017 consecutively, and the 2016 invitation as the judge in the most prestigious competition for horn, namely the ARD Competition in Munich.
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