MONROE, Ga. (AP) - University of Georgia music professor Fred Mills, a Grammy nominee who made numerous records as a trumpeter with the Canadian Brass quintet and performed with several orchestras, has died, the school said Tuesday.
He was 74. The university said he was killed Monday night in a car crash in Walton County, about 45 miles east of Atlanta. UGA officials said Mills was driving to his Athens home from Atlanta's airport after an overseas trip.
Mills joined the university's faculty in 1996. Besides teaching trumpet, he coached a graduate brass quintet, The Bulldog Brass Society. He had attended the Juilliard school of music in New York, where he got his first job offer even before he graduated.
As a trumpeter, the Canada native performed across the globe - from Sweden's Brass Nova to Orquesta Sinfonica de Aguascalientes in Mexico.
In 1961, he was a founding member of the American Symphony Orchestra in New York. He also was pr incipal trumpet for the New York City Opera, and played with the National Art Centre Orchestra in Canada and the New York City Ballet Orchestra.
Mills also recorded more than 40 albums with the Canadian Brass and was nominated for a Grammy award in 1992.
A statement on the Canadian Brass Web site called Mills a "Canadian treasure who changed the world's musical perspective."
The statement also said he "spent over fifty years helping establish the trumpet as a beautiful, lyrical voice amongst solo orchestral instruments."
UGA officials called Mills an "inspiration to all who knew him."
"One of the finest performers and teachers of his generation, he was at the same time a warm and generous colleague and a dear friend." said Dale Monson, director of the music school.
Copyright © 2009 The Associated Press
Published by Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Sep. 9, 2009.