Gackstatter Inducted into SWOSU Alumni Hall of Fame
Wednesday, April 22, 2020
Gary Gackstatter, assistant professor of music and orchestra director at St. Louis Community College-Meramec, will be inducted into Southwestern Oklahoma State University’s Distinguished Alumni Hall of Fame.
Gackstatter is an active artist, composer, conductor, clinician, performer and teacher. He has been teaching at STLCC-Meramec since 2007, and also conducts both the Symphonic Band and Meramec Orchestra.
Prior to joining STLCC, Gackstatter served as conductor at Cowley College, Southwestern College and Wichita State University, all in Kansas. He holds a master’s degree in music education/conducting from Wichita State University and a bachelor’s degree in music education from SWOSU.
Gackstatter is a two-time Kansas Governor’s Arts Award Winner and is the 2017 Missouri Humanities Council Excellence in Education Award winner. His published compositions (with C. Alan Publications) are performed internationally and his vision to combine the various arts genres in performances has gained national attention.
Gackstatter has composed six symphonies, each combining music with other arts. He has arranged symphony debuts for Sam Bush, R. Carlos Nakai, Laura Love, Trio Globo, Three Dog Night, Kansas, John Gorka, Barbara Higbie, John McCutcheon, Tom Chapin and the Paul Winter Consort. His most recent work is “Symphony Chaco: A Journey of the Spirit.”
Gackstatter is the author of three books: “Your Musical Journey,” a music appreciation textbook; “Pen and Ink,” a book of his writings and drawings; and, most recently, “The Spark: Notes from the Podium,” a series of short meditations on teaching music.
Also a pen and ink artist, Gackstatter’s work has been featured at several shows including the St. Louis Art Fair.
The 2020 SWOSU Distinguished Alumni honorees will be recognized during the reschedule SWOSU Convocation activities tentatively planned for Dec. 12 on the Weatherford campus.