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It has truly been an honor for me to conduct the Alachua County Youth Orchestra for over 25 years. As a teacher, to see and hear these young musicians develop not only their musical skills and understanding, but also to see them mature and become young adults, is  very special indeed.   The orchestra has always been, and continues to be, a musical highlight in my life.

R. Gary Langford, Music Director & Conductor

Gary Langford, Music Director and Conductor of the Alachua County Youth Orchestra for over 25 years, is the 15th inductee into the Florida Bandmasters Association’s Roll of Distinction for his leadership with Florida bands and major impact on the history and development of bands in Florida. In June 2016, he received the Doris Leeper Award from the Florida Alliance for the Arts which “honors an artist as educator for outstanding contributions to the arts, and who has had a significant and unique impact on arts education in the state of Florida.” He is also the recipient of the 2014 Spirit of Gainesville Award for the Arts for his betterment of his community through his selfless contributions of time and energy, and of the 2014 Lennie Kesl Lifetime Arts Achievement Award from the Gainesville Division of Cultural Affairs. In 2012, he was named a Jazz Hero by the Jazz Journalists Association as someone who is an “activist, advocate, altruist, aider and abettor of jazz who has had a significant impact on his community.” He has also been inducted in University of Florida’s Band Hall of Fame and Gainesville Friends of Jazz Hall of Fame.

With a Masters in trumpet performance from the prestigious North Texas State University Jazz Studies Program, he came to University of Florida as assistant director of bands and trumpet professor in 1971. He enjoyed a distinguished 38-year career during which he served as Director of Jazz Band, Director of Concert Band, Director of Marching Band, Assistant Director of the School of Music, and Director of Jazz Studies. Upon retirement in 2007, he was conferred the title of Professor Emeritus of Music.

Since 2009, Mr. Langford has served as the Music Director for the Holiday Traditions Benefit Concert to Stop! Children’s Cancer, an annual concert performed by the ACYO with local youth choruses. His other conducting duties  include the Gainesville Community Band, the Gainesville “POPS”, the Oak Hammock Chamber Players and the EOS Jazz Band.  He is a well-known and respected adjudicator/clinician at the state and national level, has conducted numerous county, district and all-state ensembles and is an accomplished arranger/composer.

Most recently he received the Doris Leeper Award from the Florida Alliance for Arts Education.  The award is presented “to an individual who has had a significant and unique impact on arts education in the state of Florida.

To contact Mr. Langord, please email glangford@arts.ufl.edu