Student’s passion for music is recognized, awarded

Senior Zach Gulaboff Davis, began playing piano around five or six years old.

“At the age of 12, I began to study [piano playing] with a professor from Willamette University, Dr. Elise Yun,” Davis said. “At which point I became more serious [about playing] Zach Davisdue to the increased demands placed on me.”

Davis is known for his art of piano playing around in the Linfield community. However, his talent is being noticed around the Northwest region.

Davis travels to many places for performances in Oregon and around the Willamette Valley, Washington and San Francisco.

  He has performed at Linfield a numbers of times. For instance, Davis’ most recent performance for Linfield was as a piano concerto soloist at the Linfield Chamber Orchestra. He has also played in the Willamette Valley Symphony, Salem Youth Symphony, Linfield Concert Band, and Philharmonia Orchestra.

He also teaches private piano lessons. Davis has also won many awards, including Winner of the 2012 Linfield College Chamber Orchestra concerto competition, second place in the 2012 collegiate division of the Oregon Music Teachers Association piano competition, winner of the 2011 Salem Youth Symphony Concerto Competition and winner of the National Federation of Music Clubs’ award for a new chamber music composition with my composition, “Sonata for Viola and Piano.”

He also plays a variety of other instruments other than the piano as well.

“I am also an orchestral percussionist, meaning that I play timpani, snare drum, mallet instruments, and other percussion instruments,” Davis said.

Davis is a music major, and specifically studies in piano performance and composition. He also is minoring in mathematics and education.

Since Davis is a composer, he has a keen “interest in new music, especially that of 20th century Russian composers.”

However, he likes playing a pieces from a wide variety of music genres, including from the Baroque period to contemporary Classical music.

“Music has a very direct and profound way of communicating with the audience. And I enjoy connecting with them through that means—both in playing other composers’ works and composing my own,” Davis said. “I believe that music can express emotions that words fail to convey. And I strive to bring these emotions to the listener, whether in my interpretation of another composer’s work or in my own compositions.”

After Davis graduates, he plans on attending graduate school to continue to study composition and piano. He is still researching possible graduate schools, working on pieces for future auditions and completing his portfolio  for his compositions.

“With his diligence, talent, determination, and ‘can do’ attitude, he has great potential for success in music composition and piano,” said Joan Paddock, professor of music. “He has already distinguished himself as a young composer and pianist.”

Davis’s senior composition recital is at 8 p.m. on Nov. 5, 2013 in Delkin Recital Hall located in the Vivian Bull Music Center.

And his senior piano recital is at 6 p.m. on April 19, 2014, also in Delkin Recital Hall in the Vivian Bull Music Center.

Mariah Gonzales / Culture editor

Mariah Gonzales can be reached at

YuCheng Zhang/Senior photographer



            Senior Zach Gulaboff Davis is a music major, emphasis on piano performance and composition. This summer, he received a Young Composers Award from one of the world’s largest music organizations, the National Federation of Music Clubs. Davis has also performed in Oregon, Washington, and California.