Location: Maryland, USA
William Gabbard, tenor, has been singing professionally for over thirty-four years, the last twenty-nine with the Soldiers’ Chorus of The United States Army Field Band of Washington, DC (http://www.armyfieldband.com). From 1998 to 2014 he also served as Drum Major, leading the Field Band in three Presidential Inaugurals, and Concert Band/Soldiers' Chorus Narrator, announcing for several thousand live performances on the Field Band's national concert tours.
In 2010 he was appointed Enlisted Conductor of The Soldiers' Chorus.
After receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree cum laude from Mercer University in Macon, Georgia, where he was a double major in vocal performance and American history, Gabbard began his studies at The University of Iowa in the summer of 1981, when he began studying voice with his mentor and friend Dr. John Van Cura—a relationship that continues to this day.
While at Iowa, he was a frequent soloist with the UI Kantorei, under the baton of Dr. Don V Moses. He performed as tenor soloist with the University Symphony and Choruses under Dr. Moses’ direction in December 1985, in a memorable performance of Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis—a concert dedicated to the memory of Dr. Moses’ mentor, Julius Herford, and attended by Herford’s widow, Hanna. He was also a featured soloist in summer concerts with the Iowa City Bach Festival, and the Classical Music Seminar-Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria. With the UI Opera Theatre, he sang lead roles in major productions such as Agrippina (1985), Boris Godunov (1986), and Madame Butterfly (1986), his last UI performance, sharing the stage with Iowa alumna and internationally acclaimed soprano Michèle Crider. He was a state and regional finalist in student and artist auditions sponsored by NATS.
He left Iowa City in the summer of 1986 to join the music faculty of The University of Nebraska-Omaha. A year later he was invited to Washington, DC, to audition for the Soldiers’ Chorus.
Bill has performed in most of the major concert halls nationwide, and has been a featured performer with the Boston, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, El Paso, Jacksonville, London, Naples, and Toledo pops orchestras, as well as the National Symphony in Washington, DC. His television appearances include “The Coral Ridge Hour”, “Bob Hope: The First 90 Years” (NBC), “The National Memorial Day Concert” (PBS), “Pops Goes The Fourth” (A&E), “The CBS Early Show,” “Celebrate The Stars and Stripes” (TNN), “Hardball with Chris Matthews” (MSNBC), "Jeopardy!" (syndicated), “Celebrate the 4th from Ford’s Theatre" (ABC), and “The Boston Pops July 4th Spectacular” (CBS).
He has sung in all fifty states, in all “four corners” of the USA, representing the brave members of our armed forces. He has conducted vocal workshops and master classes for music educators and young singers across the nation. In 2002, he co-wrote and co-hosted the Soldiers’ Chorus instructional video The Joy of Singing (http://www.armyfieldband.com/pages/listening/EducationalPlayer.html), produced by Maryland Public Television. This video on basic principles of vocal production and performance is available free of charge to music educators nationwide, as part of the Field Band’s outstanding educational outreach program of instructional books, CDs and videos (click on the link provided, then click on "The Joy of Singing").
His military decorations include four Meritorious Service Medals, three Army Commendation Medals, five Army Achievement Medals, two National Defense Service Medals, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and the Gold German Armed Forces Badge for Military Proficiency. He has been a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia since 1978, and was initiated into the Society of Pi Kappa Lambda in 1984.
In addition to performing with the Soldiers’ Chorus, he has regularly appeared as a soloist at the chapel of The US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. He is a member of Brethren (http://www.brethrengroup.com), a Washington, DC-based men’s ensemble that has performed across the nation, released five acclaimed CD recordings, and has performed at regional and national conventions of the American Choral Directors’ Association.
In May 2013, Bill began teaching voice again at the college level, as a member of the adjunct faculty at Anne Arundel Community College, in Arnold, Maryland. In September 2013, he was appointed Sanctuary Choir Director by his home church, the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (PCA) of Annapolis, MD (http://www.epannapolis.org).
Bill and Mary Lynn met in college choir, and have been married for over thirty-three years. They are the parents of five children, grandparents of two. Their two oldest sons are pursuing careers as military officers, and their daughter is the proud wife of a naval aviator.