Ronald K. Collier
Musical Instrument Maker
Mr. Collier was a world-renowned builder of fine early music brass instruments. He began his career with the Schilke Instrument Co. on Wabash Avenue, where he repaired and built modern trumpets. He soon branched out on his own and found a niche in the international music community, said John Devens, owner of the World Folk Music Co. in Chicago's Beverly community.
A scholar on early music, Mr. Collier was famous for his Baroque trumpet and Sackbut, a Baroque instrument and precursor of the modern trombone. "He was one of the few builders in the world who built the instrument to the specifications used in the 17th Century," Devens said. His instruments are used by many early music consorts in the world, including the Grand Old Guarde stationed in Virginia, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and many colleges and universities throughout the world that offer early music studies. He worked closely with members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra on the repairs and designs of modern instruments.
Mr. Collier was a tuba player who played for many years with the famed Red Garter Banjo Band. He was also an Army veteran.
Mr. Collier is survived by his wife, two daughters, a sister and a niece.
Pub. Friday, April 2, 1999