Russian National Orchestra

Maxim Rubtsov

Principal Flute




Internationally acclaimed flutist Maxim Rubtsov has been called “miraculous,” “superb,” “absolutely impeccable” and “one of the best flutists of the Modern Age.”  Flute Talk magazine wrote that he is “an amazing performer who commands the audience’s attention from the moment he walks on stage.”  He is also one of Russia’s best musical ambassadors.

Appointed Principal Flute of the Russian National Orchestra in 2003, Rubtsov was given unprecedented solo opportunities with the RNO by its founding conductor Mikhail Pletnev.  These opportunities have included the Russian premiere of John Corigliano's Pied Piper Fantasy in 2004 under the baton of Alexander Vedernikov. Of the performance the composer said, "Maxim Rubtsov is the perfect Pied Piper.  He has both the charm and excitement that a great performer must have. With his movie star looks and charisma, and his magnificent playing and acting of the part, the legendary piper becomes alive for all to see."  In 2014 Rubtsov re-staged Pied Piper Fantasy with the Omsk Symphony Orchestra, putting 40 children on stage and earning critical acclaim as soloist and production designer. Omsk TV called the new production “intriguing, unusually exciting, real magic.”

December 2007 marked Rubtsov’s U. S. recital debut with pianist Valentina Lisitsa, presented by Friends of Chamber Music of Miami.  The Miami Herald called his playing “virtually faultless” and stated “he possesses a stellar technique.”  Excerpts of Rubtsov’s 2009 recital of Russian music with pianist Pamela Penick presented by the University of Alabama Celebrity Series were re-broadcast on 245 public radio stations across the United States.

With Vladimir Jurowski and the RNO in 2007 Rubtsov performed Mozart's Flute Concerto in G Major, after which Maestro Jurowski wrote, “Mr. Rubtsov is the sort of person who can stand on the concert stages of the world and inspire harmonious relations through his music and his personality.”

In addition to his solo work, Rubtsov has performed hundreds of faultless and surpassingly beautiful solo passages in symphonic music which are preserved in recordings of the RNO on the PentaTone Classics label.  Rubtsov's solo CD entitled Russian Romance was re-released in 2013.  A project of Blue Griffin Recording the CD was engineered by Sergei Kvitko, who also accompanies Rubtsov on the piano.  Rubtsov and Kvitko were featured in concert at the National Flute Association's 2011 annual convention in the United States and have appeared in concert together from Connecticut to California.

Born in 1977 in Bryansk, Russia, Maxim Rubtsov began to study piano at age five.  At age seven he danced with the famous Moiseyev Dance Company and only later did he begin flute lessons.  At age 13 he transferred to Moscow's Gnesin Academy of Music and subsequently graduated with an advanced degree in music from the Moscow State Conservatory.  Rubtsov joined the flute section of the RNO in 1999 and was appointed Associate Principal the following year, at the time the youngest ever to hold this position in the history of the orchestra.  In his unique career, Rubtsov has performed as a flutist-dancer at Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre with Germaul Barnes and with Denis Boroditsky Dance Company. 

Rubtsov’s 2015 teaching residency with New World Symphony in Miami represents his most recent collaboration with conductor Michael Tilson Thomas and featured an online master class linking participants from the Royal Danish Academy of Music.  Commentators on Rubtsov’s master class performance called him an “absurdly delightful flutist.” Previously he had been flutist-in-residence with Tilson Thomas’s San Francisco Symphony Orchestra.  Rubtsov’s teaching residencies have included conservatories, universities and music schools in the United States, United Kingdom, Brazil, Singapore, Dubai and Russia.

Rubtsov also performs in chamber ensembles and is a founding member of the Russian National Orchestra Wind Quintet, which took top honors in the Fifth Annual Osaka International Chamber Music Contest.  Together with the RNOWQ he has explored jazz and other genre-bending compositions, including the works of Chris Brubeck for wind quintet and jazz quartet, as well as adaptations of Peter and the Wolf and Wolf Tracks for children.

Rubtsov has shared the stages of Europe in chamber performances with pianists Mikhail Pletnev and Francesco Schlimé.  In 2012 he performed with American soprano Lisa Delan at the Napa Valley Festival del Sole, and they recorded together at Skywalker Studios in California.  In 2013 Rubtsov was featured flutist along with Diane Boyd Schultz (piccolo) in Chris Brubeck’s musical for children entitled Hermitage Cats Save the Day, which premiered in the United States and Russia.  In 2012 he toured Russia with the Brubeck Brothers Quartet, playing jazz and classical compositions in tribute to the legendary Dave Brubeck.


Hear Maxim Rubtsov

Mozart's Flute Concerto No. 1, in G Major, performed March 14, 2007 at Worcester, MA, with the Russsian National Orchestra conducted by Vladimir Jurowski
  26:18 Download

Mozart, Concerto for Flute, Harp and Orchestra in C major, KV 299
Performed at the RNO Grand Festival in Moscow, Sept 9, 2009, Mikhail Pletnev conductor, soloists Maxim Rubtsov (flute) and Svetlana Paramonova (harp)
1. Allegro 10:31 Download
2. Andantino 8:40 Download
3. Rondo 7:01 Download

Franz Joseph Haydn, Concerto for Flute and Orchestra, No. 1 in D major
1. Allegro Moderato 7:32 Download
2. Adagio 8:31 Download
3. Finale 5:34 Download


Watch Maxim Rubtsov

Excerpts from Suite for Flute and Jazz Piano Trio by Claude Bolling, performed at Festival del Sole Napa Valley, July 16, 2010.


Cole Porter What Is This Thing Called Love? 2011 RNO Grand Festival, Moscow, Russia, September 13, 2011


Flight of the Bumblebee by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. (Maxim recently released his solo CD, Russian Romance, recorded at Blue Griffin studios. It includes such favorites as Rachmaninoff's Vocalise, Alabyev's Nightingale and many other Russian works arranged for flute and piano. In this video, maxim plays Flight of the Bumblebee in less than a minute. Sergei Kvitko, producer of the recording, is at the piano.)


Maxim and Soprano Lisa Delan at Festival del Sole 2012.


Maxim's Channel on YouTube