Head of Opera Musical Studies
William Tracy was born in Hollywood, California. He received BM and MA degrees from California State University, Northridge. After being invited to apprentice at the San Francisco Opera he was engaged as coach-accompanist for the San Francisco Opera Center. For two years he was assistant artistic director/resident conductor of the Anchorage Opera in Alaska. In New York City, Mr. Tracy has appeared in the Great Performers at Lincoln Center series and for the Metropolitan Opera Lectures.
In master classes, he has assisted Regine Crespin, Evelyn Lear, Blanche Thebom, and Benita Valente. He has been principal coach/assistant conductor for the Santa Fe Opera, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Wolf Trap Opera, Kentucky Opera, Central City Opera and PORTOpera, Maine; accompanist for the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the San Francisco Symphony Chorus, the Carmel Bach Festival, and the National Chorale. In addition, he was music coordinator for the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival and Marin Theatre Company and music director of the San Francisco stage revival of The Rocky Horror Show. He was invited to be the official accompanist for the first Festival International d’Art Lyrique “de vive voix” in Vivonne, France. For fifteen years he was the principal pianist for the San Jose Symphony in California.
In 2002 he joined the faculty of Manhattan School of Music as head coach of the Opera Studio where among his assignments he has overseen recorded performances of Pasatieri’s The Seagull, Hoiby’s A Month in the Country and Summer and Smoke, Spohr’s Zemire und Azor, and Musto’s Later the Same Evening.