A man of many labels – among them vegan pescatarian macrobiotic chocoholic, conscientious objector army bandsman, union activist orchestra librarian – Paul Gunther is a study in contradiction. Having played Percussion since age 7, his first teacher was retired Boston Symphony Percussionist Lawrence White, and for a decade his mentor was Jack Moore, late Minnesota Orchestra Timpanist.
For over four decades, as a professional non-playing orchestra member, Paul has worked in orchestra libraries: Joining the Minnesota Orchestra in 1975, Paul worked first as Assistant Librarian until 1978, when he took a quick eight-year break from Minnesota as Milwaukee Symphony Librarian. In 1986 Paul returned to the Minnesota Orchestra, remaining until his 2017 retirement as Principal Librarian. For the 2017-18 season, Paul has served as Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra Librarian. Other orchestra libraries where he has served for brief periods include the Nashville Symphony, the San Diego Symphony and the New York Philharmonic.
In 2013 Paul was appointed National Repertory Orchestra Principal Librarian. The Library staff ensures that thousands of scores and pieces of the correct sheet music find their way to the right performers and conductors, and onto the correct music stands onstage.
For over a decade Paul served on the volunteer governing board of the International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians (ICSOM). He was also a founding member in 1983 and twice president of the Major Orchestra Librarians Association (MOLA), and volunteered six years of service on MOLA’s board of directors.
Paul’s degree is in music theory and composition; his eyes are sometimes hazel, his remaining hair consistently more salt than pepper, despite his food tastes leaning decidedly more toward pepper than salt. His favorite book was voted greatest novel of the 20th century in England. His favorite film is a 1986 John Carpenter cult classic.