Gary Skye, Director of Music Ministry
After graduating from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music’s Preparatory Division, Gary Skye studied piano at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. He then earned a B.A. in psychology at Stanford University and a master's degree in piano performance at Portland State University. Equally comfortable with contemporary and classical genres, Gary has performed solo concerts in many parts of the U.S. and has collaborated with internationally touring artists including NY City Opera mezzo soprano Jennifer Rivera, Broadway singer Charles Holt, contemporary inspirational singer Karl Anthony and fingerstyle guitarist Michael Mandrell.
A prolific singer-songwriter and composer, Gary co-wrote two songs on Lauri Jones' critically acclaimed 2015 album release, "Walk Your Life". Gary's debut solo piano album, a mix of classical and originals entitled "The Pathlighters and the Traveler", was released in 2011. Upcoming album releases of his many original inspirational songs and piano compositions are planned in the near future. Also an active collaborative pianist, Gary is the accompanist for the Portland Boychoir and the American Musical and Dramatic Academy's regional auditions. He works as a frequent freelance accompanist at George Fox University and University of Portland, and accompanies numerous singers and instrumentalists for the NATS and solo ensemble competitions. Gary has previously held positions as a staff accompanist and vocal coach for the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Sonoma State University’s Dept. of Music, and the Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan.
As a teacher, Gary has been a piano class instructor at Portland State University and has taught a "Wellness for Musicians" class on the adjunct faculty of Marylhurst University. He maintains a private piano studio in the Portland metro area and is a specialist in the areas of improvisation/composition, musician's wellness/injury prevention and Body Mapping. In addition, Gary is the Wednesday Music Director at New Thought Center for Spiritual Living in Lake Oswego and has served both as a church music director and as a frequent guest singer-songwriter/pianist for numerous congregations across the country. He's honored to currently be serving as the interim music director at United Church of Christ in Lake Oswego.