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Alliance Publications

Composer David J. Westfall was born April 17, 1941, in Sistersville, West Virginia. His parents, although not musically inclined, were school teachers by profession, but distant relatives had graduated in music. At the age of four, his parents noticed an interest in music on David’s part when he began playing the piano by ear. So, at the age of six, they began giving him piano lessons with Hattie Ullmann, a local teacher. By the age of fourteen, he took lessons on the euphonium from band director, John Maiolo, and participated in his high school band. The following year, he began to write his first piano pieces, and then, at age 16, wrote a march for band which was later revised for the U.S. Army Band.
 
Upon graduating from high school in 1959, David entered Oberlin College as a piano major, but soon realized his main interest was in writing music, and completed his BM degree in composition as a student of Richard Hoffman. Before leaving Oberlin in 1963, he spent an additional year of studying composition in Salzburg, Austria.
 
Westfall entered the U.S. Army and served as Staff Arranger for the 7th Army Soldier’s Chorus and the 33rd Army Band in Heidelberg, Germany. After three years of active duty, he was separated from the army and entered graduate school at West Virginia University where he studied composition with Thomas Canning and earned a Masters of Music in 1973. Three years of post-graduate work then took him to Cincinnati, where he studied with Scott Huston.
 
After leaving graduate school, David Westfall taught for the Universtiy of Akron from 1976 -1982 and served as organist and choirmaster for the Lutheran Church in Doylestown, Ohio, for twenty-four years froom 1984-2008.
 
He married to former opera singer, Luisa Velasco of Madrid, Spain, with whom he has been active teaching piano students in their own private business, Westfall’s Music Instruction. Although he is now retired from teaching, he taught piano privately for 37 years, and served as accompanist for his wife’s vocal recitals throughout Northern Ohio. Retirement from teaching and performing provides him time now to devote to writing new music.