Clarinetist Joseph Rabbai, former Principal Clarinetist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, passed away on August 11, 2020 due to complications from heart surgery.
Joseph Rabbai was born on August 23, 1938 in New York, and he studied at Temple University and at the Juilliard School. He was Principal Clarinet in several orchestras including the American Symphony Orchestra (under Leopold Stokowski), Israel Philharmonic, New York City Opera Orchestra, and the Mostly Mozart Festival. He held the position of Principal Clarinet of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra from 1980 until 2003.
In addition to performing, Rabbai also taught at Queens College, Brooklyn College, The Graduate School of the City University of New York, The State University of New York at Purchase, and New Jersey City University.
Let us celebrate the life, legacy, and music of this legendary clarinetist and pedagogue.