Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra Principal Flutist Jan Kocman is well known to Canadian audiences for his solo, orchestral, and recital performances. Celebrating his 50th year with the WSO during the 2023 – 2024 season, Mr. Kocman is the longest-serving Principal musician in the orchestra’s history. Mr. Kocman has performed as a solo flutist with WSO Music Directors Piero Gamba, Kazuhiro Koizumi, Bramwell Tovey, Andrey Boreyko, Alexander Mickelthwate, and now Daniel Raiskin. He has been a featured soloist numerous times in Winnipeg performing concerto repertoire by Nielsen, Mozart, Quantz, J.S. Bach, C.P.E. Bach, Telemann, Endre Szervansky, Glen Buhr, John Corigliano, R. Murray Schafer, Bright Sheng, Leonard Bernstein, Brian Current, Christopher Rouse, and Gabriela Lena Frank. Mr. Kocman has been an active chamber music recitalist performing for the Millennium Centre summer series, the WSO’s New Music Festival, Music Inter-Alia, the Winnipeg Bach Festival, Manitoba Chamber Orchestra Small Groups Night, the University of Winnipeg, the University of Manitoba, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, and the Winnipeg Chamber Music Society. Mr. Kocman has also performed as a guest Principal Flutist with the Minnesota Orchestra under the direction of Edo de Waart and with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra with Bramwell Tovey.
A native of Hammond, Indiana, Jan Kocman began his flute studies at the age of eight with his father. He graduated with distinction from Indiana University, where he studied with the renowned flutist James Pellerite, earning his Master’s Degree in Flute Performance. During his graduate studies, he served as Associate Instructor to Mr. Pellerite and completed coursework in musicology with Walter Kaufmann, the founding conductor of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. Throughout his long career, Jan has worked with every Music Director of the WSO.
Mr. Kocman has contributed both to the musical life of Winnipeg and the performance and musical training of numerous music educators and orchestral flutists. He was the flute instructor at the Faculty of Music, University of Manitoba for over three decades as well as a faculty member of the Red Fox Music Festival in Massachusetts, the Banff School of Fine Arts, the Courtenay Youth Music Centre in British Columbia, and flute instructor for the Canadian Festival of Youth Orchestras. Mr. Kocman received the Certificate of Teaching Excellence from the University of Manitoba in recognition of his significant influence and contributions to the education of an outstanding graduating student. Jan Kocman is a founding member of the Syrinx Flute Festival, Winnipeg’s annual music festival dedicated to flutists of all performance levels.
Mr. Kocman performs on a Verne Q. Powell flute made in 1950 in Boston, Massachusetts.