William Jon Gray 1955-2022

Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 1:38 pm

By Lawrence A. Johnson

William Jon Gray, chorus director of Music of the Baroque from 2010-19, died July 27 in hospice care, age 66. The cause of death was not disclosed.

The fortunes of the MOB Chorus were not at a peak when Gray took the reins of the ensemble in June 2010. Almost immediately there was a manifest improvement in polish, clarity, blending and articulation—as witness the magnificent choral singing a few months later in Bach’s complete Christmas Oratorio.

“I have enjoyed many relationships with chorus masters throughout my career, but none as special as that with Bill,” said music director Dame Jane Glover in a statement released by MOB. “I learned so much from him, and leaned heavily on him. He was always modest, calm, utterly attentive, meticulous in preparation, and charmingly supportive.”

In addition to preparing the chorus for vocal works with the MOB orchestra, Gray often led the annual holiday Brass and Choral programs during his tenure. His programs for those events were dizzyingly rich, generous and varied, spanning the centuries with ease and audacity.

A full obituary of William Jon Gray can be read here.

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