Remembering Roland Kohloff

It with great sadness that I heard about the passing of my teacher and friend, Roland Kohloff. He was a wonderful man who will be sorely missed. I first met him in 1979 while auditioning for Juilliard and was struck even then by his warmth and positive outlook. A couple of years later I became his student. He was thorough and supportive. He was also a character in the best sense of the word. All of his students have their favorite Rolandisms. I remember a mixed metaphor that I was particulary fond of. He referred to something as “neither hill nor beans,” which I take to be a combination of not worth a hill of beans and neither here nor there. Another time we were discussing sewing timpani sticks and the various things we might use to sew the seams with. I said that I used dental floss and without looking up Roland said, “You should. Every day.” We all laughed but he never cracked a smile. I’ll never know if he was joking or not!
This is one of the only pictures I have of Roland. My wife, Gina, and I were in NYC in 1991 and Roland snuck us into a closed NYP rehearsal. It’s a little fuzzy, but I still like it!
Ted, Gina and Roland

2 thoughts on “Remembering Roland Kohloff

  1. Roland is my father and today is the 4 year anniversary of his passing. I just found that Ted had written this and it is lovely to hear your loving thoughts of my dad. I especially love the “Rolandisms”. He had many expressions that he made his own. This was one of the many things that made him so unique and special. He was/is so wonderful!!!

  2. We were just at a Tabglewood concert where the timpanist featured prominently. Made we think back to many NYP concerts where we enjoyed watching Roland’s flair. I googled him and was very sad to read of his passing.

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