Remembering Henry Charles Smith

Grammy award-winning brass player, conductor, and educator Henry Charles Smith passed away on September 8, 2021.

Smith was a member of the Philadelphia Orchestra from 1956-1967. After one year as Associate Principal Trombone, he was appointed Principal Trombone before leaving the orchestra to pursue a career in conducting. Smith performed over 2000 concerts under Eugene Ormandy and many of the 20th Century’s greatest conductors.

Smith spent 17 seasons with the Minnesota Orchestra as associate and resident conductor. He was appointed music director of the South Dakota Symphony in 1989, and is widely recognized for raising the artistic standard of the orchestra. In addition to his regular positions, Smith guest conducted orchestras across North America.

When he wasn’t performing, Smith had a passion for teaching. Smith served on the faculty at Indiana University and University of Texas at Austin, as well as many years at Interlochen.

ITA extends its condolences to Smith’s family and loved ones. The family wishes for memorials to be sent to Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies, N.C. Little Hospice, or Philadelphia Orchestra Retirees & Friends.