William White hails from Bethesda, MD, where he learnt to play the viola in his elementary school music class. He soon figured out enough of the notes on the keyboard to write some modest compositions and from then his path was set.
An unexpected chance allowed him to conduct his High School’s Musicals and he nurtured his talent as a music director and conductor in Bethesda’s all-youth Wildwood Summer Theatre. At the age of 18, a performance of West Side Story under his baton was professionally and critically acclaimed.
William attended the University of Chicago, studying music theory, composition and orchestration under the tutelage of Easley Blackwood. While there, he played viola in the Symphony Orchestra, sang in the Motet Choir, and conducted numerous student concerts and theater productions.
He graduated in 2005 with honors for his senior thesis composition, Fantasy on “Les Folies d’Espagne”. During his summers off from the U of C, William studied conducting with Michael Jinbo at the Pierre Monteux School, where he now serves as Conducting Associate.
After graduating college, he launched his musical career in Chicago, hustling for whatever gigs he could get. In three years, he held music director posts with the Hyde Park Youth Symphony, the U of C Chamber Orchestra, the Presbyterian Church of Barrington,Rockefeller Chapel, and the Union Church of Hinsdale.
During this time, he composed a number of works for a variety of performers, the largest of which was his oratorio for choir, soloists, and orchestra, Thy King Cometh. William produced his own recording of the oratorio during the summer of 2007, with a group of friends, collaborators and freelance musicians.
He then spent two years in Bloomington, IN, at Indiana University’sJacob School of Music, studying conducting with David Effron and Arthur Fagen, earning his living as a music theory instructor and opera assistant conductor. He frequently returned to Chicago as a pre-concert lecturer for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and to play chamber music with old friends.
May of 2009 saw the first release of his music on a professional record label, Chicago’s Cedille Records. The piece, an a cappella setting of the Nunc Dimittis, was recorded by the Wm. Ferris Chorale under Paul French.
William White currently resides in Cincinnati, OH, where he is the Assistant Conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony Youth Orchestra. He frequently travels as a guest conductor and lecturer, and collaborates on a variety of concert, film, and recording projects. He was named Music Director of the Seven Hills Sinfonietta in June 2012.
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