William Short

William Short was appointed Principal Bassoon of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in 2012. He previously served in the same capacity with the Delaware Symphony Orchestra and has also performed with the Houston Symphony and the Philadelphia Orchestra. William has performed as soloist with the Vermont and Delaware Symphonies, as well as the New York Classical Players.

A dedicated teacher, William serves on the faculties of The Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, and Temple University, as well as the Verbier Festival and Interlochen Arts Camp. He has presented classes at colleges and conservatories around the country and at conferences of the International Double Reed Society, for which he serves as an officer.

William has also performed and taught at the Lake Champlain, Lake Tahoe, Mostly Mozart, Stellenbosch (South Africa), Strings, and Twickenham Festivals. An occasional editor and composer, his works have been published by the Theodore Presser Company and TrevCo-Varner Music.

Committed to forging connections between audiences and performers, William's articles on the subject can be found on the MET Orchestra Musicians' website, which has been lauded not only by The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times, but also by noted arts consultant Drew McManus and prolific cultural commentator Norman Lebrecht.

William received his Bachelor of Music from the Curtis Institute of Music, where he studied with Daniel Matsukawa and Bernard Garfield, and his Master of Music at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, where he studied with Benjamin Kamins. He attended festivals including the Music Academy of the West, Pacific Music Festival, Spoleto Festival USA, and the Verbier Festival. Additional major teachers have included Jeanine Attaway, Kristin Wolfe Jensen, and William Lewis.

A Series of Fortunate Events

That, I think, is the best summary of my career so far. Time and again, I have found myself in situations I'm not quite ready for: Curtis and Rice, Symphony in C, the Delaware Symphony, and now the Met. But I have been consistently surrounded by teachers, friends, and colleagues who have given me a frankly unreasonable amount of support and understanding. In short, my career has been an unbroken procession of remarkable learning environments.

I am still improvingan obvious statement, and certainly a lifelong characteristic of all successful musicians, but one that is perhaps magnified in the formative first years after graduation. This is especially true when one is catapulted into a position that requires a tremendous amount of learning in a very, very public way. My time at the Met has been the most challenging and rewarding two years of my life, and it is my hope that I can make some of my experiences and revelations useful to others.

This blog will serve as a professional journal of sorts. It is not my intention to shy away from the challenges I have faced and continue to face. I'm not interested in crafting a persona of false invincibility. Rather, having wondered what it would be like to have a job like mine, having agonized over whether or not I would ever "stack up," I hope to put a human face on what it's like to be fortunate enough to have a career at the highest level.

So, stick with me. I promise it will be a bumpy, and hopefully interesting, rideand there will be reeds!