Bob Williams

Second Violin

William R. (Bob) Williams, violin

Bob Williams attended the University of San Francisco as a Music Major taking classes at the SF Conservatory of Music. He studied Viola with David Schneider and composition with Kirke Mechem. In 1973 Williams moved to Fresno State University and studied viola with Werner Lywen and composition with David Bates, Wilson Coker, and Steven Gilbert. Conducting studies were with Dr. Jack Fortner, Dr. Arthur Huff, and Fresno Philharmonic Music Director Guy Taylor. He graduated with his B.A. in Performance and Composition in 1974.

Williams played his first concert in 1969 and became a tenured member of the Santa Rosa Symphony in 1974. Williams also plays regularly with numerous West Coast orchestras.

As well as performing with these groups, Williams often performs with show orchestras for such notable performers as Johnny Mathis, Natalie Cole, Smokey Robinson the Eagles, Jefferson Airplane, Nuns Canyon Road, Mannheim Steamroller and many others.

From 1979 through 2012 Williams was conductor of the Santa Rosa Symphony’s Preparatory Orchestra, a training orchestra for young musicians (now known as the Debut Orchestra). In 1995 he founded the Discovery Orchestra (now known as Aspirante), an intermediate training orchestra in which he served as Music Director/Conductor until 2012. Williams also conducted the Santa Rosa Symphony Youth Orchestra as Interim Director.

In the summer of 2015, Williams had the opportunity to join the International Lyric Academy as a faculty member in the orchestral study program. Along with some conducting, he plays violin and/or viola in the academy orchestra. Usually headquartered in Vicenza, the ILA has performed in Rome, Naples, Venice, Florence, Verona, Viterbo, Soriano, Assisi, and many other locations. Along with Italy, Williams has performed in Paris, Nice, Vienna, and Berlin.

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A portrait of Bob Williams and his instrument