Lowell Greer holds a unique place among the hornists of his generation. Known for his musicianship and versatility with or without valves, he has received critical acclaim and international recognition as an orchestral hornist, chamber musician, soloist, educator and horn maker.
A Wisconsin native, Lowell began violin studies at age 4 and took up horn at age 12 due to a hand injury. His parents, both college professors, changed jobs several times, so Lowell had many horn teachers, the most notable being Ernani Angelucci of the Cleveland Orchestra. Lowell returned to Wisconsin to study with John Barrows at the University of Wisconsin and then pursued studies in Chicago with Helen Kotas, Frank Brouk, Dale Clevenger and Ethel Merker. While in Chicago, he freelanced extensively performing with the Chicago Civic Symphony, Lyric Opera of Chicago, American Ballet Theatre, Joffrey Ballet, shows, recordings and as extra horn with both the Chicago and Milwaukee Symphonies. Winning an audition, he joined the Detroit Symphony in 1972 as assistant principal. In 1978, he accepted the position of principal horn of the Mexico City Philharmonic and began to pursue his solo career. In 1980, Lowell moved to Europe to better pursue his natural horn interests, and performed in Belgium as guest principal horn of the Antwerp Philharmonic/Royal Flemish Orchestra. He returned to the US in 1984 where he served as principal horn of the Cincinnati Symphony until 1986. Mr. Greer also performed as principal of the Toledo Symphony from 1990-97. During this time, he somehow made room in his schedule to enter and win seven first prizes at six prestigious international horn competitions: Heldenleben, (1977), Gian Battista Viotti, Vercelli (1978), Hubertus Jaachthoornfestival (1979), SACEM, Paris (1981), Jacques-Francois Gallay (1981), and American (1983, 1984).
As a soloist, Mr. Greer has performed on natural and modern horn with some 50 orchestras in the US, Canada, Mexico and all across Europe not to mention his appearances at numerous chamber music venues. His extensive discography includes four CD’s on Harmonium Mundi including the Mozart Horn Concertos and Quintet, Brahms Horn Trio and the Beethoven Sonata on natural horn and a recording for Decca L’oiseau Lyre of the entire music of Mozart for winds performed on original instruments.
A dedicated scholar and educator, Mr. Greer has taught at Wheaton College, Oakland University, Interlochen Arts Academy, The School for Perfection in Mexico City, The University of Cincinnati, The University of Michigan and currently at the Carl Neilsen Academy in Odense, Denmark. An acclaimed expert on natural horn performance, his research has led him to become a maker of fine reproductions of classic instruments and he has taught a course in natural horn building techniques at the William Cummings House since 1994.
Lowell Greer has joined us every June since 2002 and we are all looking forward to his return in 2018!
KBHC Faculty: 2002-2019