Keith Benjamin

Keith Benjamin
Curators' Distinguished Professor of Trumpet

Contact Info
126 Grant Hall


Keith Benjamin joined the UMKC Conservatory as professor of trumpet in 1989 with a DMA and the Performer’s Certificate from the Eastman School of Music, and was named a Curators' Distinguished Professor of Trumpet at the Conservatory in the fall of 2017.

Dr. Benjamin has presented master classes and clinics at dozens of universities and colleges in the United States and overseas. UMKC Conservatory trumpet alumni are performing and teaching all over the world, in orchestras, military bands, public schools and universities. Trumpet students from the Conservatory have won first prize in the National Trumpet Competition, the International Trumpet Guild Solo Competition, and the Carmine Caruso International Trumpet Competition.

His current orchestral work includes guest principal trumpet stints in Orchestra Iowa and other regional orchestras, and extra trumpet for the Kansas City Symphony, Kansas City Ballet, and Lyric Opera of Kansas City. His recital performances emphasize contemporary music, with more than a dozen commissioned works and premieres including compositions of Samuel Adler, Stacy Garrop, James Mobberley, Anthony Plog, and many others. Recital and concert appearances in Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York City, Chicago, Dallas, and more than 35 states and overseas are “traveling” highlights, and Kansas City also affords him the opportunity to have a lively professional career as a commercial, studio, and lead trumpet player; recent performances have been with Hugh Jackman, Ben Folds, Peter Gabriel, Idina Menzel, and Matthew Morrison.

Dr. Benjamin is partnered with organist Melody Steed in Clarion, a trumpet and organ duo that emphasizes twentieth-century music. The duo has released three CD recordings with Gothic and Crystal Records; the two newest recordings, Clarion: New Vintage, and Ripples, are each comprised of five new American works commissioned by the duo. 

Benjamin is an artist-clinician for the Selmer/Bach companies. He makes his home in Kansas City with his wife Jennifer and their two sons Duncan and Rowan.