Position: Distinguished Artist-in-Residence, Guitar; Director of Guitar Studies
Location: Armstrong Hall, Room 49
Phone: (540) 665-4624
Employed Since: 2013
Conservatory Professional Highlights:
Julian Gray is recognized as one of the most gifted and eminent performers, recording artists and teachers in the guitar world. He has appeared at many of the most prestigious guitar gatherings, including the Second American Guitar Congress, The Stetson International Guitar Festival, and Guitar Foundation of America Festivals, as well as concert series and festivals in London, New York, San Francisco, Dallas, Washington, DC, St. Louis, and on tour throughout the United States and Canada. His recording of music for guitar and strings by Paganini with the Diaz Trio was hailed by the Strad Magazine as the finest example of that genre on record; recordings with former duo partner Ronald Pearl – the Magic Circle, Baroque Inventions, Homages and Evocations, and Scarlatti 15 for the Dorian- Sono Luminus label, have received enthusiastic accolades from critics and music lovers alike. Classical Guitar Magazine commented: They have convincingly extended the art of the possible for classical guitar duo.
Mr. Gray is known for his active involvement in expanding the guitar literature, both through his many arrangements of Baroque, Romantic and Modern compositions, and by commissioning new music for guitar. Described by Acoustic Guitar magazine as Americas best guitar duo, his duo with Ronald Pearl has been the only guitar ensemble to receive a commissioning grant from Chamber Music America and an ASCAP special citation for adventuresome programming. They have commissioned and premiered works by such composers as Roberto Sierra, David Leisner, Loris Chobanian, Gilbert Biberian, William Bland, Oliver Hunt, and Benjamin Verdery. In addition to his publication of Music of Domenico Scarlatti for Guitar Duo by Mel Bay, he has edited works for Editions Orphee, Columbia Music, Subito Music, and Presser Editions.
As a performer of Early Music, Mr. Gray played bandura, lute and medieval harp as a member of The Baltimore Consort. As an accompanist and continuo player, he has performed with such vocal luminaries as Phyllis Bryn-Julson and Julianne Baird, and in productions of the Wolf Trap Opera.
Mr. Gray has lectured extensively and given master classes at major conservatories and music schools across the United States. His most recent article series Learning to Learn Parts 1 and 2 appears in the Summer and Winter 2013 issues of Soundboard Magazine. Julian Gray is a recipient of the Excellence in Teaching Award of the Johns Hopkins University where he has been a member of the faculty for over 20 years, and is the Chair of the Guitar Department at the Peabody Conservatory. His students and chamber ensembles are frequent top prize winners at major national and international solo guitar, guitar concerto, and ensemble competitions. Students from Mr. Grays studio have received every performance and academic honor awarded by the Conservatory. Former students from his studio continue his pedagogical tradition as members of college, university, and conservatory music departments throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia.
This summer, Mr. Gray was excited to join the faculty of the Shenandoah Conservatory of the Shenandoah University as Professor of Music and the new Director of the Guitar Studies. He is enthusiastically looking forward to creative synergies present between the Dance, Theater and Music Divisions which make up the Shenandoah Conservatory and the larger University community including nationally acclaimed Recording Technology and Music Therapy programs.
As a conductor, he has directed the Guitar Orchestras of The Guitar Foundation of America, the National Guitar Workshop and The Stetson International Guitar Festivals. He conducted the Peabody Conservatory Guitar Orchestra in concert with Grammy Award winning guitarist William Kanengiser in the Marlow International Guitar Series in Washington, DC.
Professional Performing Artist
Fields of Expertise:
Professor of Music, Guitar