Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Julian Kaplan and his family moved to North Carolina, where he began playing trumpet at age 12. He soon began studying with the principal trumpet of the Charlotte Symphony, Michael Miller, who now plays in the Cleveland Orchestra. While in high school, Julian was first chair in the wind ensemble, lead trumpet in the marching band, and featured soloist at several concerts. During that time, Julian participated in the All-County, All-District, and All-State Honor Bands, along with countless other honors bands across North Carolina. Julian was part of the first graduating class at the then-new North Lincoln High School, was an honor student, and graduated in the top 10 of his class.
Julian received a full-tuition scholarship to the University of Kentucky, where he received his undergraduate degree in trumpet performance and studied with Mark Clodfelter. He was also a student of Vince DiMartino at Centre College.
While at the University of Kentucky, Julian played at several large venues, including the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall, and has performed concerts in Greece and China. Julian served as the principal trumpet in the University of Kentucky Wind Ensemble and Symphony Orchestra, with whom he has been a featured soloist.
Shortly before graduation, Julian was appointed Principal Trumpet of the Lexington Philharmonic, where he played for two seasons, before being appointed second trumpet of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. Julian served two seasons as second trumpet, and in the 2012-2013 was appointed principal trumpet, the position he currently holds.
Julian has performed with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Asheville Symphony Orchestra, as lead trumpet for Manhattan Transfer, and as a featured soloist with several chamber music groups. Julian is also a recording artist, spending time in Nashville recording for various albums.
Julian also serves on the faculty at the University of North Florida.
During his time off from the orchestra, Julian is often a featured soloist at Chamber Music Festivals in Florida. He also enjoys golf, racquetball, and tennis.