Professional Bassoonist & Professor
Christopher Millard is one of Canada’s best-known woodwind artists, where he has been Principal Bassoon for the National Arts Centre Orchestra (NACO) since 2004. Prior to his engagement with the NACO, Mr. Millard served as Principal for the Vancouver Symphony and the CBC Radio Orchestra for 29 seasons, and he is also the principal bassoon for the Grand Teton Music Festival and has made five concert tours with Valery Gergiev and the World Orchestra for Peace. He has had a distinguished career as a performer and educator.
Mr. Millard has received wide praise for his numerous recordings BIS, Naxos, Arabesque, CBC Records and Summit, including a disc in the prestigious “OrchestraPro” series. His recording of the Hétu Bassoon Concerto won a 2004 Juno Award. A regular guest artist and teacher at the Scotia, Banff, Orford and Ottawa Chamber Music Festivals, Mr. Millard has also appeared in concert and recordings with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the Marlboro Festival, Chamber Music Northwest, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, the International Double Reed Society (IDRS) and as a soloist with numerous orchestras. He regularly performs at home and on tour with the National Arts Centre Wind Quintet, a highly acclaimed ensemble that has made a debut recording on the Naxos label. He was the creator and host of the NAC’s classical musical podcast and has served on executive director and music director search committees for the NAC.
He is a faculty member with the University of Ottawa, and prior to that taught at the University of British Columbia (UBC) from 1975 thru 2003. Before that, he was a bassoon professor at Northwestern University for 7 years. He regularly gives master classes at the National Orchestra Institute, Rice University, the Curtis Institute, Indiana University, Manhattan School of Music and the New World Symphony. He was also the bassoon instructor for Canada’s National Youth Orchestra for 20 years, and taught for many summers at the Orford and Domaine Forget Academies.
Mr. Millard’s students occupy positions in the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, the Toronto, Vancouver, Kitchener-Waterloo and Saskatoon Symphonies, and orchestras in Houston, Indianapolis, Seattle, Memphis, Omaha and many others. His ensemble coaching has included Gold Medalists at the Fischoff International Competition.
He was a student of the legendary Sol Schoenbach at the Curtis Institute and coached extensively with the great French flutist Marcel Moyse. He is a noted authority on reed acoustics and a skilled woodwind technician.