*Sigma Alpha Iota member
Gay Holmes Spears completed the Bachelor of Music degree at University of Tennessee at Martin, Master of Music at Arkansas State University, and Doctor of Musical Arts at University of Memphis. She has earned several awards and commission prizes for her compositions, ranging from the Tennessee Music Teachers Association "Composer of the Year," an Arkansas Arts Council Fellowship, ten consecutive ASCAP awards, and a proclamation from Governor Mike Huckabee as "Outstanding Composer and Musician in the State of Arkansas." Her pieces, in many instrumental and vocal media, have been performed in numerous concerts throughout the U.S., Europe, and Japan.
Currently, she is an instructor in the music departments at St. Louis University and Webster University, and also serves as Director of Music Ministries at the Church of the Good Shepherd in suburban St. Louis, Missouri. Spears' works are published by Neil A. Kjos, Ludwig Music, Band Music Press, Southern Music Company, and Grand Mesa Music Company.
2304 Eagles Glen Ct.
Chesterfield, MO 63017
Sinfonietta No. 1, commissioned by the University City Symphony Orchestra, Leon Burke III, conductor, All Saints Catholic Church, University City, MO, April 2016.
Into the Ages, symphonic band, Daehn Publications.
SAI Alumna Gay Holmes Spears is an instructor in the music department at St. Louis University.
Gay Holmes Spears is an instructor in the music department at St. Louis University.
Let There Be Music, St. Charles County Youth Choir, Claudia Fallert, director, Lindenwood University, St. Charles, MO, 11/17/13. Sonatina in E Minor, Gay Holmes Spears, piano, St. Louis University’s All-Steinway Initiative, Steinway Gallery, St. Louis, 11/23/14.
A second performance of “Ripples of Hope” was at, Missouri, on April 22, 2014. Sourwood Suite St. Dominic High School Concert Band, Greg Cissell, director, St. Dominic High School, O’Fallon, MO, 2/22/14; also, Bishop DuBourg HS, St. Louis, 2/23/14.
Ripples of Hope, commission, St. Louis Women’s Hope Chorale, Leanne Magnuson Latuda, director, Sheldon Concert Hall, St. Louis, MO, 4/8/14; also, Maryville University, St. Louis, 11/9/14. Into the Ages, (commission: Francis M. Scala Fund at the Library of Congress), University City Summer Concert Band, Tom Poshak, director, The Loop, St. Louis, 6/24/14.
Spears is an adjunct professor in the music department at St. Louis University. She also serves as the music director and organist for the Faith Des Peres Presbyterian Church in suburban St. Louis, Missouri.
Where the Rivers Run, UMSL Orchestra, Dan Presgrave, conductor, University of Missouri-St. Louis, Dec. 2011. Reflections on ‘Wondrous Love’, Franklin County, KY, High School Band, Dave Shelton, director, Oct. 2011.
Gay Holmes Spears received an ASCAP award, was a lecturer for the Community Music School of Webster University Summer Composition Intensive and was an adjudicator for the Arden and Harry Fisher Young Composers’ Competition for the Community Music School of Webster University.
American Mosaic, a composition for woodwind quintet, was performed numerous times in public concerts, schools, and educational centers in the St. Louis, Missouri area, beginning in 10/09 and continuing throughout the spring of 2010. The work was commissioned by the Equinox Chamber Players for their 2009-2010 season as part of their dynamic musical and educational program, Immigrations: A New Place Like Home, for which Spears served as Composer-In-Residence.
American Folk Hymn, Mugwump’s March, and Reflections on Wondrous Love by the University City Summer Band directed by Tom Poshak during the summer of 2010. The Lord’s Prayer at Christ Church Cathedral, St. Louis, MO in 12/09.
Spears teaches in the music department at St. Louis (MO) University and continues as Director of Music and Organist at Church of the Good Shepherd in Town and Country, MO. In 2009, she received an ASCAP award. Into the Ages, a work for symphonic band commemorating the bicentennial of the birth of Abraham Lincoln, was commissioned by the Scala Fund at the Library of Congress. The Equinox Chamber Players have commissioned Spears for a woodwind quintet to be part of a series of programs that celebrate the changing faces of St. Louis. Titled American Mosaic, the work celebrates the joys, hardships, and lives of immigrant persons to America and tells their stories from new beginnings to becoming a part of the mosaic of America. The work will have its premiere in the spring of 2010 in several concert venues, schools, and other educational centers in the St. Louis area.
Trombone Quartet was performed in January 2009 by the St. Louis Trombone Quartet at East Central College, Washington, MO.
Spears teaches in the music departments at both St. Louis University and Webster University in St. Louis, MO; recently she was named Director of Music and organist at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Town and Country, MO. The composer also participates in the Gateway Chamber Ensemble as pianist, accompanies the Cambiata Singers of the Kirkwood Children’s Chorale, and along with SAI alumna Caryl Wilson, co-directs the Unity Singers vocal ensemble. In 2008, she received an ASCAP award and accepted a commission for a composition commemorating the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln’s birth for symphonic band.
Her new work The Season of Singing, commissioned and performed by the St. Louis Women’s Chorale, directed by Scott Schoonover, was introduced May 2, 2008 at Bonhomme Presbyterian Church in Chesterfield, MO; May 3 at Trinity Presbyterian Church in University City, MO; and June 8 at Little Flower Catholic Church in Richmond Heights, MO. Portions of the work were performed during May in selected St. Louis area public schools.
The University City (MO) Band, under the direction of Gary Brandes, performed Sourwood Suite July 29, 2008.