Troy Gifford is a composer and guitarist whose music synthesizes elements of modern classical, Latin, jazz, and rock styles. His compositions have been performed on multiple continents, including at festivals and concerts in North America, South America, Europe and Asia. He has written music in a variety of settings, including pieces for guitar, voice, piano, orchestra, choir, band, film and theater.
Troy has won a number of awards for his music, including first prize in competitions sponsored by the Guitar Foundation of America, Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine, and the University of Miami. His music has been performed in concerts by acclaimed solo artists such as Lorenzo Micheli, Kevin Manderville, Rene Gonzalez, Miles McConnell, Ben Pila, Eduardo Meirinhos, Robert Phillips, Ken Keaton and many others. Numerous ensembles have performed his works; a partial list includes the Winter Park Bach Festival Choir and Orchestra, Frost Symphony Orchestra, Florida Atlantic University Symphony Orchestra, Kennesaw State University Philharmonic, Alterity Chamber Ensemble, Orlando Contemporary Chamber Orchestra, New Score Chamber Orchestra, Florida Southern College Strings, Fernwood String Quartet, and the Valencia College Choir, Symphonic Band and Orchestra.
His first solo CD, “Delineations,” was released in 2008 on the Flatfoot Record Label. His second CD, “Olvidando,” was completed in 2014 and contains both solo guitar compositions and chamber music that includes the guitar. His music has been published by Doberman Yppan, Mel Bay, and the Timucua Arts Foundation, and has been recorded on albums by solo artists including Eric Hansen, Robert Phillips and Cesar Paucar. In 2012 he composed original music for the film “My Fair Lidy,” which was premiered at the Florida Film Festival. He is also a regular contributor to Fingerstyle Guitar Journal, one of the premier online guitar publications for fingerstyle guitarists. He continues to perform as a solo artist and as a member of the Belt-Gifford Duo.
Troy began his musical studies on the piano as a child and picked up the electric guitar in his teens. After spending several years learning how to play rock guitar, he began exploring fingerstyle technique and listening to steel string guitarists such as Michael Hedges and Alex Degrassi. This eventually led to an interest in the classical guitar. He went on to study at Florida Atlantic University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in guitar performance and a master’s degree with a focus in composition. While at FAU he was named the recipient of the Esther B. Griswold Award, an award given biennially to the university’s most outstanding music student. He later earned his doctorate in composition from the University of Miami. He has previously taught at UM, Palm Beach State College and Florida Atlantic University. He currently serves as the chair of the music department at Valencia College in Orlando, FL.