Dr. Robert “Gabe" Southard joined Gordon College in the Fall 2022 as Associate Teaching Professor of Music and conductor of the Gordon Symphony Orchestra and Symphonic Band
Immediately prior to joining Gordon’s music faculty, Dr. Southard was serving as Associate Professor of Music and Director of Bands at Hope College, MI. At Hope College, he was also the Head of the Winds and Brass area and Head of the Instrumental Music Education Area. Dr. Southard completed his Doctorate of Musical Arts in Conducting at Michigan State University where he studied with Professor John Whitwell. Prior to this, Dr. Southard served as Wind Symphony conductor and Flute instructor at the University of Michigan-Flint. He also holds master and bachelor of music degrees from University of Wisconsin Madison and Ithaca College.
Dr. Southard is an active orchestrator. His largest project to date is an arrangement for wind ensemble of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Symphony No. 2 “Antar,” which is currently published through OHM Music. He has also started a line of flexible chamber arrangements aimed to help smaller schools perform great works even if they do not have the proper instrumentation. The first piece of this line, Mozart’s Serenade in C minor, is due to be published in Fall of 2022.
As a flute player, Dr. Southard maintains an active performing schedule as principal flute of the Holland Symphony Orchestra, MI, and as a recitalist throughout the US. He has also performed with the Madison Symphony Orchestra, the Lucca Opera Orchestra, Italy, as well as a number of community orchestras. Dr. Southard was a semi-finalist in the National Flute Association’s Piccolo Artist Competition and winner of the 2016 Convention Performers Competition where he performed two new works at the convention in San Diego. In 2020, Dr. Southard was named a Pearl Flute Artist, one of less than 70 flutists worldwide. In 2022, he released his first flute CD – Gold Mosaic: Music for Flute by Dana Wilson. It is currently available on all streaming sites.