Blog: Gordon Stout
This week's blog is on the artist Gordon Stout. Gordon will be the guest artist at the 2017 HMF Academy. To say the least, this is not the first time he has been asked to show his knowledge and talent regarding the marimba. Some of the many honors Gordon has had are being on the jury for many international marimba competitions, as well as conducting a 100 person marimba orchestra and is currently the Professor of Percussion at Ithaca College in New York. To find out more about the many incredible things Gordon Stout has done, check out his bio and explore his page at www.gordonstout.net/bio.html. It is more than worth the read!
What was the key factor in your career as a musician?
GS: Well, there isn't one single factor that was the key to my career. There are many things that contributed. My excellent teachers: James Salmon, John Beck, Joseph Schwantner, Samuel Adler, Warren Benson, and others, including all my professors at the Eastman School of Music. My parents were professional musicians, and there was always music in our house growing up, and they provided with a lot of inspiration, experience, and support.
What was your favorite TV show while you were growing up? How did it influence you musically or otherwise?
GS: I watched too much television growing up, and had many favorites. I don't believe any of them influenced me musically. Television was one way, among others, to offer variety in my life, providing a relief from practicing, composing, and studying.
What musical instrument do you find fascinating?
GS: Marimba is the most beautiful and interesting instrument!!
Outside of music, what hobbies do you have?
GS: At this point in my life, my hobbies are reading, mowing the lawn, and enjoying my house and 27 acres of land.
Tell us any more important information.
GS: I am retiring from full-time teaching in May of 2019, after what will be 41 years at that point. I will practice more, compose more, still continue teaching as long as people invite me to be their guest artist, and hope to travel some not related to my work with my wife. I would like to record more, but don't have any idea at this point what format those would end up in.
I have recently written my first ever composition for symphony orchestra, and hope to do more of that in the future, perhaps looking forward to a marimba concerto at some point. I will also gladly continue to be involved in marimba orchestra performance, conducting, and composition.
What is like to be inducted into the Percussion Arts Society Hall of Fame?
GS: In regards to the PAS Hall of Fame induction in 2012: it goes without saying that it was a great honor. Not only to be one of a handful of marimbists inducted, but to validate my support for PAS all these many years and see it returned with this great honor. I will no doubt continue to support the advancement of the percussive arts as long as I am able to do so, and PAS will be an important part of that.
The HMF Blog posts featuring our people are compiled and prepared by our 2017 intern, Scott Eiklenborg (a percussion student at Wartburg College, Waverly, IA).