SMC S981FS/ HL 294815
Commemoration was commissioned by the members of the Northwest North Carolina Bandmasters Association to recognize the distinguished career of Dr. William A. Gora, the longtime Director of Bands at Appalachian State University, who passed away in 2015. Bill was loved by his students, respected by his peers and cherished by his many friends. A brilliant musician, a fine conductor and a warm human being with a marvelous sense of humor, Bill has been sorely missed by all.
Gora was friends with composer James Barnes for over 40 years. They met when Barnes was still in graduate school at Kansas and Gora had just finished his DMA at the University of Florida. When the NNCBDA asked Barnes to compose a work in Bill’s honor, he was honored to do so. He decided to write a cheerful work for Bill, full of energy, color and melody, because he knew this is what he would have wanted; no funeral dirges for Bill Gora. The soft middle portion of the work, a hymn-like tune scored in saxophone choir, was included because Bill was a fine saxophonist and, for many years, the saxophone teacher at ASU.