Julian Milkis


“…simply the best clarinetist in the world!”

– Nezavisimaya Gazeta, Moscow, Russia 

Julian Milkis is a world-renowned soloist, chamber musician, solo performer, classical and jazz clarinetist. He performed on the main world stages of Europe and America: Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York; Salles Pleyel and Gaveau in Paris, Roy Thomson Hall and Weston Recital Hall in Toronto, etc. Among the works written for him are concertos by Tishchenko, Weinberg, Moravets, Hyman, and others. Milkis is also a Knight of the Order of Malta (for “healing human souls”).

Milkis was born in Odesa (Ukraine) in a family of musicians. In 1974 they emigrated from the Soviet Union to Canada. Julian became a full scholarship student at the Manhattan School of Music and at the Juilliard School. Milkis studied with Leon Russianoff and later became Benny Goodman’s only student. 


He has been soloist with the Toronto Symphony, State Symphony Orchestra of Russia, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Vivaldi Chamber Orchestra, Hamburg Mozarteum, Edmonton Symphony, L’Orchestre Nationale de Lyon, L’Orchestre Symphonique Française, CBC Vancouver Orchestra, Divertissement Chamber Orchestra, Hermitage Chamber Orchestra, and Musica Viva.

Mr. Milkis has performed chamber music with Valery Afanasiev, Gérard Causse, Misha Maisky, the St. Lawrence String Quartet, Cuarteto Latinoamericano, and the St. Peter’s Trio. A participant in prominent music festivals in France, Italy, Spain, Turkey, New York, and Canada, Mr. Milkis has performed for radio and television broadcasts throughout the US, Canada, Europe, and Asia.  Since 1991, he has performed regularly by invitation at Sviatoslav’s Richter’s December Evenings chamber music festival.

Milkis worked closely with Olivier Messiaen and Giya Kancheli. Concertos have been written for Julian Milkis by such composers as O. Moravetz, O. Petrova, B. Tishchenko, M. Weinberg, A. Yusfin, D. Hyman.

Recording studios: Warner Classics’ Lontano, the French Suoni e Colori, Sony’s Russian division CEAUX, Melodiya.

From the beginning of the Russian war in Ukraine Julian Milkis fully supported his native country, stopped his visits to Russia and began to play a series of benefit concerts in support of Ukraine. During the last year, he visited wartime country for 3 times, widened his repertoire with a lot of Ukrainian music, performed with The Navy orchestra of Ukrainian Armed Forces and The Land Forces Orchestra of Ukraine, Andrii Chornyy Chamber orchestra and Odesa National Philharmonic Orchestra, as well he played for civilians in different halls and soldiers in hospital. In February 2023 Milkis took part in Gerry Hofstetter’s light show in Odesa and Kyiv.