William (Bill) Scharnberg, distinguished performer and teacher, began attending International Horn Workshops in 1973, becoming a life member in 1975 and serving in many capacities over the years. He has inspired students and added to the horn literature with commissions.
Bill earned BM, MA, MFA, and DMA degrees from the University of Iowa. He studied with Paul Anderson at the University of Iowa, with summer lessons from Louis Stout and Philip Farkas. He joined the faculty of the University of North Texas in 1983 and retired in 2018 as a Regents Professor with a horn class of fifty students. Previously he had taught at Central Missouri State University (1973-74), Pacific Lutheran University (1975-77), the University of Oklahoma (1977-83), the Royal Academy of Music Stockholm (fall of 1987). At each of these institutions he was also a member of faculty woodwind and brass ensembles.
Fourteen students were mentored through the DMA degree, all of whom are either teaching at a university and/or performing in an orchestra, with two recently retired from universities. Over thirty students who did not pursue or finish the DMA degree won jobs in orchestras or at universities. Many more have become successful public-school teachers or pursued careers outside music. “I am honored to have had the privilege of working with so many talented students,” he says, “and I am proud of their individual achievements.”
Bill performed as principal horn of the Tri-City (now Quad-City) Orchestra, Tacoma Symphony, Flathead Festival Orchestra, Royal Opera Orchestra (Stockholm), Dallas Symphony, Dallas Ballet, Dallas Chamber Orchestra, Breckenridge Music Festival, Big Sky Orchestra, Intermountain Opera, and Dallas Opera (1984-2016), and has been principal horn of the Wichita Falls Symphony Orchestra since 2007. He has performed at international and regional horn conventions, in recital at universities, concerti with regional ensembles, as a chamber musician at festivals, and recorded on Crystal, EcoClassics, Centaur, and Klavier labels.
He commissioned and premiered works by Paul Chihara, David Maslanka, Cindy McTee, Anthony Plog, and Kim Scharnberg. His editions of 18th and 19th-century horn works were published by McCoy’s Horn Library.
Bill served the IHS as an Advisory Council member (1986-1992, 1999-2003), Workshop Coordinator (1981-1998), President (1990-1992), Music Review Editor (1981-2003), Editor of The Horn Call (2003-2020), and host of two IHS Horn Symposiums (1991, 2012). He was awarded the IHS Service Medal of Honor in 2017.