One of Austrian banding's most respected euphonium players has decided to retire from full time banding so he can spend more time with his young family.
After 14 years with the Preston Band-Darebin City, Michael Mears, has made the difficult decision, with Band President Chris Lee telling 4BR: "Michael changed our band. His approach to playing, his musicality and technical mastery was a real eye-opener.
Aside from his skill as a player, it is has been his dedication and commitment that showed he is a true bandsman. He led by example and showed us what it took to be the best. Darebin City Brass will forever be in his debt."
Before joining Preston, Michael was solo euphonium with Footscray-Yarraville City Band and the Hawthorn Band, helping them to claim four A Grade Australian Championship titles. He was also made a life member of the band for his outstanding service.
Our recent performance of 'Hypercube' at the Austrian National Championships was a great one to finish on and absolute proof of his quality as a player. He'll be missed by all of usMusical Director Andrew Snell
During his 14 years with Preston, Michael held committee positions, took numerous rehearsals and sectionals, and occasionally conducted the band in concert appearances. In 2015, he was awarded a life membership for his exceptional commitment and leadership to Darebin City Brass.
Musical Director Andrew Snell also had high praise for him. "Mick is a legend, pure and simple. As a conductor, he's exactly what you want in your band; dedicated, loyal, reliable and above all a truly great player.
I'm really sad to see him go, but am also incredibly pleased to see him go out at a time of his choosing while he's absolutely at the top of his game.
Our recent performance of 'Hypercube' at the Austrian National Championships was a great one to finish on and absolute proof of his quality as a player. He'll be missed by all of us."
That final contest appearance saw Mick help the band top the own-choice discipline of the contest.