LEE MILLS

DOUGLAS F. KING ASSOCIATE CONDUCTOR OF THE SEATTLE SYMPHONY

"Mills emerged in his element here, showing an obvious fondness for this epic, unjustifiably neglected score. Along with a compelling dramatic arc, he elicited characterful playing for the many solos that enrich it."

-Thomas May, Musical America

BIO

Associate Conductor of the Seattle Symphony and five-time winner of the Solti Foundation U.S. Career Assistance Award, Lee Mills is internationally recognized as a passionate, multifaceted and energetic conductor. In naming Mills as the ‘New Artist of the Month’ for March 2019, Musical America praised Mills’ ‘omnivorous musical temperament eager to try out highly contrasting musical styles and approaches.’

 

During the pandemic, Mills was an invaluable asset to the Seattle Symphony, giving dozens of performances, including the 2020 Season Opening Gala on Seattle Symphony Live. Mills also was the ‘hero of the hour’ (Seattle Times) when he stepped in at the last minute to replace Thomas Dausgaard for a performance of Hanna Lash’s world premiere double-harp concerto The Peril of Dreams and Amy Beach’s epic Gaelic Symphony in November 2021, about which Thomas May wrote in Musical America, ‘Mills emerged in his element here, showing an obvious fondness for this epic, unjustifiably neglected score. Along with a compelling dramatic arc, he elicited characterful playing for the many solos that enrich it.’

 

​The League of American Orchestras selected Mills for the 2018 Bruno Walter National Conductors Preview where he conducted the Nashville Symphony Orchestra, and in 2017 Mills was selected as a semi-finalist in both the Sir Georg Solti International Conducting Competition and the Opera Royal de Wallonie-Liege International Opera Conducting Competition. In addition, he conducted alongside David Robertson in the highly acclaimed U.S. Premiere of John Cage’s Thirty Pieces for Five Orchestras with the Saint Louis Symphony.

 

In addition to his work with the Brazilian Symphony Orchestra and the Seattle Symphony, he has also led concerts with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Naples Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra (USA), the Rochester Philharmonic, the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, the San Antonio Symphony and the São Paulo State Symphony Orchestra. In 2014, Mills was the Assistant Conductor to David Robertson for Carnegie Hall’s National Youth Orchestra of the USA.

 

Through his project Vibe Sinfônica, initiated in 2018 in partnership with nightlife producer The Week Group in São Paulo, he has brought classical music to thousands of new listeners through performances in unusual settings. In their inaugural performance, Vibe Sinfônica performed music of Vivaldi at The Week Group’s 14th anniversary in São Paulo, playing to a crowd of over 10,000 EDM fans and opening for DJ Offer Nissim. This project was also featured in a video clip of Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake, created to commemorate the 15th anniversary of The Week.

 

​At the invitation of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Music Director Marin Alsop, he received the prestigious BSO-Peabody Institute Conducting Fellowship in 2011. Under the tutelage of Gustav Meier and Marin Alsop, Mills received his Graduate Performance Diploma and Artist’s Diploma in Orchestral Conducting at the Peabody Institute. He was a conducting fellow at the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen during the summers of 2012 and 2013, working closely with Larry Rachleff, Robert Spano and Hugh Wolff. Mr Mills graduated cum laude from Whitman College, where he studied with Robert Bode.

 

CALENDAR

Upcoming 21/22 Concerts:

All concerts with the Seattle Symphony can be streamed live at Seattle Symphony Live

  • May 20, 8:00 PM PDT – May 27, 8:00 PM PDT
    Seattle Symphony Live
    It’s a tour de force for keyboard instruments, all led by Associate Conductor Lee Mills. Available on Seattle Symphony Live from May 20-27, 2022
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  • May 20, 8:00 PM PDT
    Seattle, 200 University St, Seattle, WA 98101, USA
    It’s a tour de force for keyboard instruments, all led by Associate Conductor Lee Mills.
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  • May 21, 8:00 PM PDT
    Seattle, 200 University St, Seattle, WA 98101, USA
    It’s a tour de force for keyboard instruments, all led by Associate Conductor Lee Mills.
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  • Jun 04, 11:00 AM PDT
    Seattle Symphony Live
    Come along on a journey to the mythical lands of animals. Hear the captivating movements of the forest nymphs in Debussy’s Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun, then join Coyote as he seeks a new name in Jerod Impichchaachaaha' Tate’s "Spirit Chief Names the Animal People."
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  • Jun 24, 8:00 PM PDT
    Seattle, 200 University St, Seattle, WA 98101, USA
    The vibrant voices of the Seattle Men’s Chorus join the Seattle Symphony for this special Pride weekend concert event with conductor Lee Mills at the podium. Plus, sensational NYC-based drag performance artist Thorgy Thor (RuPaul’s Drag Race, Dragnificent) leads the celebration as our fabulous host.
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  • Jun 25, 2:00 PM
    Seattle, 200 University St, Seattle, WA 98101, USA
    The vibrant voices of the Seattle Men’s Chorus join the Seattle Symphony for this special Pride weekend concert event with conductor Lee Mills at the podium. Plus, sensational NYC-based drag performance artist Thorgy Thor (RuPaul’s Drag Race, Dragnificent) leads the celebration as our fabulous host.
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  • Jun 25, 8:00 PM
    Seattle, 200 University St, Seattle, WA 98101, USA
    The vibrant voices of the Seattle Men’s Chorus join the Seattle Symphony for this special Pride weekend concert event with conductor Lee Mills at the podium. Plus, sensational NYC-based drag performance artist Thorgy Thor (RuPaul’s Drag Race, Dragnificent) leads the celebration as our fabulous host.
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