Trumpeter Ryan Darke enjoys a diverse career as a performer and educator. He is currently in his 7th season as Principal Trumpet of the Los Angeles Opera Orchestra led by conductor James Conlon and as Lecturer of Trumpet at the Bob Cole Conservatory at California State University of Long Beach.
As an educator, his energy and commitment to his students is a tremendous priority and truly a passion of his. In addition to his position at CSULB, Ryan is also a Lecturer of Pedagogy (Graduate Level) at The Colburn Conservatory of Music. Previously, he was Assistant Professor of Trumpet at the University of Arizona (2015-2017), a guest lecturer at The Juilliard School, Tianjin, a studio teacher at the Orange County High School of the Performing Arts, Program Director of Brass & Trumpet at the Montecito Music Festival, a Graduate Assistant Teacher while a masters student at Rice University, and the Brass Head at his alma mater Cerritos High School.
Throughout Ryan’s orchestral career he has played full seasons with The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (2nd trumpet), San Diego Symphony (principal trumpet), and a year of fellowship at New World Symphony Orchestra under Michael Tilson Thomas. In addition, he has played short-term contracts with Auckland Philharmonia, The Malaysia Philharmonic, and the Stavanger Philharmonic.
In addition, he has played with orchestras across the United States including San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Saint Louis Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Los Angeles Master Chorale, Pacific Symphony, Hawaii Symphony, and the Mainly Mozart All-Star Orchestra in San Diego. With the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Ryan has appeared as guest principal trumpet, played in the LA Philharmonic Brass Quintet, and joined two international tours (Venezuela and Scotland).
He has enjoyed positions at summer festivals including three seasons as associate principal at the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra in Santa Cruz. He has also played at Britt Festival Orchestra, Castleton Festival Orchestra under Lorin Maazel, two summers at the National Orchestra Institute, the Aspen Music Festival, Spoleto Festival Orchestra, Schleswig-Holstein Festival Orchestra, Bar Harbor Brass Institute, and seminars at Domaine Forget.
In addition, Ryan enjoys recording work in Los Angeles, and frequently performs at Warner Brothers, Sony, Capital Records, and Fox Studios. He can be heard on many motion pictures and television shows including The Greatest Showman, Turning Red, The Mandalorian, Mulan, The Suicide Squad, The Simpsons, Star Trek: Picard, and more.
While in Los Angeles, Ryan enjoys performing contemporary music with the modern music collective wildUp, of which he is a founding member and has appeared on several Grammy nominated recordings. He also has performed in salsa bands and a fantastic world music/Brazilian band named Badaue!
Throughout his career, Ryan has worked with many of the world’s great conductors, including Gustavo Dudamel, Michael Tilson Thomas, Lorin Maazel, Kurt Masur, Marin Alsop, Louis Langree, and Esa Pekka Salonen. He also has enjoyed working closely with Christoph Eschenbach, while serving two years as principal trumpet at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival. While residing in Germany he was featured playing Mahler 5, among other large works during several international tours.
Ryan received his Professional Studies Certificate at The Colburn School (2013), master’s in Music Performance from Rice University (2010), and his bachelor’s degree at the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music at California State University Long Beach (2008). His most influential instructors have been James Wilt, Tony Prisk, Rob Frear, Richard Giangiulio, Joan LaRue, and Michael Sachs.
In addition to performing, Ryan is an active teacher and mentor of young musicians. He is highly involved with the Jumpstart program at The Colburn School, where he mentors the conservatory students while they are honing their teaching skills. He has volunteered for OrchKids through the Baltimore Symphony, Youth Orchestras of Los Angeles (YOLA) through the LA Philharmonic, and while touring with the LA Philharmonic taught a master class in Venezuela’s "El Sistema." Ryan was asked to speak at a lecture series for Bard College Conservatory of Music students via the Los Angeles Philharmonic.