|Walter M. Chesnut
The University of Massachusetts at Amherst awarded a Doctor of Fine Arts Degree to ITG member Walter M. Chesnut, Professor Emeritus of Trumpet, at the 134th Commencement held on May 23, 2004.
A member of the music faculty of the University of Massachusetts Amherst since 1967, Professor Emeritus Walter Chesnut has taught untold hundreds of students who have gone on to be professional performers and music educators.
He is a beloved figure on the UMass campus, thanks in part to his long service as University Herald at commencements and other important ceremonies.
A graduate of the University of Michigan, where he studied with Clifford Lillya for 6 years, Chesnut is an accomplished performer on brass instruments, an expert in their history and literature, and a gifted singer. He has a loyal following among his former students and countless others who relish his and his ensembles' performances on a variety of modern and historical instruments.
In 1993 a spinal condition left Chesnut unable to walk or perform. He regained his mobility and musical mastery only by way of the most arduous and protracted effort. In so doing he became an inspiration for all those who face physical challenges.
Chesnut has performed with many orchestras, including the Springfield Symphony with which he has been principal trumpet. He was named as one of the Outstanding Educators of America in 1973 and has received the UMass Chancellor's Medal and outstanding Teacher of the Year Award.
Department of Music, University of Massachusetts at Amherst
Walter M. Chesnut on faculty page