LATEST

News

British violist and conductor Gerald Gentry has died aged 86

The artist performed with many of the London Orchestras and was a BBC staff conductor for 12 years

Tuesday, 03 June 2014

British violist and conductor Gerald Gentry has died at the age of 86. Born in May 1927, he began playing the viola professionally at the age of 13 and at 15 was freelancing with London orchestras including the London Philharmonic and BBC Symphony. After touring Italy, Greece and Austria as a member of the Royal Artillery Band and studying at the Guildhall School of Music, Gentry was named co-principal viola of the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the age of 19.

Under the guidance of Walter Goehr, a student of Schoenberg, Gentry performed with the BBC Theatre Orchestra, which broadcast live opera performances in collaboration with such narrators as Laurence Olivier, John Gielgud and Leonard Sachs. He also conducted the BBC Singers in station broadcasts.

In 1952 he studied conducting alongside Bernard Haitink with Paul van Kempen in the Netherlands and in 1953 became one of the BBC’s three assistant staff conductors – a position her held until 1965, conducting all 17 BBC orchestras.

Gentry moved to Australia in 1984 where he conducted the Monash University Orchestra, the Victorian College of the Arts Orchestra, the Melbourne Conservatorium Orchestra and concerts for the Melbourne Composers League. In 2005 he founded the Southern Cross Philharmonia whose motto is ‘Championing Australian Music’.

Gentry’s first wife Muriel Joyce died in 1998. He is survived by Bianca Rooman, whom he married in 2012.

Photo: Ian Mitchell

Subscribe to The Strad or download our digital edition as part of a 30-day free trial. To purchase single issues click here

Limited time only offer - 42% off
COMMENTS
comments

POST A COMMENT

Captcha
 
Cookie
viola stolen!
I had my viola stolen last week from Liverpool. Label has: Aubrey J. Tarr 1974...
violin blocks
I have an old unlabled violin and I have noticed 4 small blocks about5cm square...
violin left hand position
I have a new student , quite advanced, who has a 'double jointed' left thumb...
serene violin solo pre-1917
Hi folks. For a story I'm writing I'd like suggestions for the most serene and...
FOLLOW US
  • Facebook
    Facebook
  • Twitter
    Twitter
  • YouTube
    YouTube
  • Google+
    GooglePlus
THE STRAD'S NEWSLETTER

Reading The Strad puts you at the top of your game - Save 42% off a subscription today.

View
X