Robert Milne was a French horn player in his youth, attending the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, and becoming Assistant 1st horn in the Rochester Philharmonic to Verne Reynolds during his third year at the school. He later performed with the Baltimore Symphony as Assistant 1st horn. But then he discovered the fun of playing piano for audiences, which he says is "easy."
His career then branched off and he became a full time concert pianist, performing ragtime and early American piano styles for the past forty years. His informative and entertaining concerts number about 250 a year. Discovered by members of the Library of Congress, he was taken to Washington, D.C., in 2004 to be filmed and recorded over a period of three days. During this time he was referred to as a "National Treasure" by the Librarian of Congress, Dr. James Billington.
Mr. Milne has written a piano concerto, a trumpet concerto, numerous art songs, a flute suite, about 40 piano rags (described by some as "classical in nature"), music for the stage play "Orvie," music for the stage play "The Christmas Chimes," and uncountable smaller pieces. He's also written five books, one of them a collection of poems.
Mr. Milne was designated a "Musical Ambassador" by the United States Dept. of State in 2005, and performed five tours of the Japanese islands in this capacity. He also performed for the Swiss Parliament in Berne, Switzerland, as a representative of the United States.
Mr. Milne possesses an amazing ability to hear and remember music in his head, even several pieces at once. He has recently been studied at great length by doctors of neurology Kerstin Bettermann, M.D., and James Toole, M.D., to see how he does this. The studies involve MRI brain scans (over four hours at present), and memory tests that Mr. Milne describes as "brutal." These studies are an ongoing project.