W.T. Skye Garcia

W.T. Skye Garcia has an unusual background for a musician in that he was a nuclear physicist before he began his career in music! As a young boy growing up in West Nyack, New York he had always wanted to learn to play the piano, but, coming from a large family, the expense of a piano and lessons was prohibitive. While he did play trumpet in his school's marching band and jazz band, he was not able to fulfill his dream of becoming a pianist until later in his life.

Upon finishing high school, Skye attended the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs for two and a half years and then continued his education at Colorado State University in Fort Collins. While attending CSU he took his first steps toward a career in music by filling the elective hours in his degree plan as a research physicist specializing in radiation dosimetry at the Hanford Project in Richland, Washington, and also began furthering his music education. After 18 months of private piano study, he enrolled at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas where he completed a Masters in Church Music (1981) . While at Southwestern Seminary, Skye met his wife, Sarah Gilmore, who was also a music student at the seminary. They were married in 1978.

Skye next moved to Abilene, Texas to pursue a two-year course of study at Hardin-Simmons University where he completed a Master of Music in Piano (1983). While there, he also developed a keen interest in composing. At his graduation, Skye was awarded the HSU Department's Best Graduate Composer award.

In 1984, Skye and Sarah moved to Ada, Oklahoma. Since that time, Skye has maintained a private piano studio, Creative Expressions Piano Studio, with an enrollment of 30 students and has served as pianist, organist and handbell director at several local churches. During the past 14 years, Skye also has been an adjunct instructor teaching music theory, class piano and private piano at East Central University.

After teaching piano privately for several years, Skye began writing music for his students in an effort to meet their particular musical interests and needs. In 1993, he submitted his first compositions to Alfred Music Publishing and has been writing steadily since that time. Regarding themes for his compositions, Skye comments, "My compositions trace my life and collectively form a kind of autobiography." He receives much of his inspiration from his own personal life experiences as well as from the experiences he shares with his students and particularly with one of his youngest students, his son Zachary Star, who was born in 1993.