Director of Gordon College Symphony Orchestra
B.M.Ed. The Hartt SchoolM.M. The University of Michigan
Ed.D. Boston University
Walter Pavasaris directs the Gordon College Symphony Orchestra (GSO) and teaches string methods. A former double bassist in the West Point Band, he began his public school teaching career in the Marshfield (Massachusetts) Public Schools. He became the director of orchestras and string teacher for the Belmont (Massachusetts) Public Schools in 1977. From 1990 to 2009, Dr. Pavasaris was coordinator of fine and performing arts for the Lexington (Massachusetts) Public Schools. His primary responsibilities in that position included advocating for the arts and creating and implementing curricula in the areas of music, visual arts and drama. He supervised and evaluated a highly diverse fine and performing arts faculty. Under his leadership, the arts maintained an integral place within each student’s basic education.
For more than three decades, Dr. Pavasaris has positively impacted many music educators while serving as a faculty member at The Boston Conservatory, New England Conservatory (NEC), Boston University and Gordon College. He continues to be an active adjudicator, clinician and guest conductor throughout New England. As a conductor, he has led numerous festival orchestras throughout Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Rhode Island.
In 1992 and from 1999 to 2001 Dr. Pavasaris was the guest conductor of the United States Youth Ensemble String Orchestra during its European tour. From 2003 to 2008, he was the associate conductor of the Metrowest Orchestra in Hopkinton, Massachusetts. During the 2004 and 2005 seasons, he served as music director of the Nashoba (Massachusetts) Youth Orchestras. In addition to conducting the GSO, he is the music director and conductor of the Arlington Philharmonic Orchestra, as well as conductor of the Northeast Massachusetts Youth Symphony Orchestra.
In 1992, Dr. Pavasaris received the Paul Smith Memorial Conductor of the Year Award presented by the Massachusetts Instrumental and Choral Conductors Association. In 1996, he received the Lowell Mason Award from the Massachusetts Music Educators Association (MMEA) in acknowledgement of his numerous contributions to music and music education. In 2007 he was given the MMEA’s Visionary Leadership Award for his outstanding contributions as a music administrator, and in 2008, he was the recipient of the MMEA’s Distinguished Service Award in recognition of his exceptional support and outstanding accomplishments towards the advancement of music education in the schools of Massachusetts.