William J. Fritz is a composer, pianist, organist, liturgical musician and director of music at St. John the Baptist Parish in Costa Mesa, CA. His musical journey began as a child when he lay under the piano while his older sisters practiced for their lessons. From there, he convinced his parents to start him on piano lessons, but not before he had composed his first piano piece, being an autodidact at heart.
He flourished under the instruction of Robert Estrin of LivingPianos.com, under Esther Jones for organ studies, and under both Norman Beede and Robert Cummings for composition.
In high school, he discovered the beauty of chant, attending the St. Michael’s College Prep school, where he had the joy of listening to the canons chant the Mass and Compline every day.
He joined St. Michael’s Abbey in Orange County as a seminarian and for nine years dedicated himself to learning the life they lived. While there, he began organ training and a rigorous, immersive approach to Gregorian chant, serving as apprentice to the canons during his education as seminarian. As part of the training of a seminarian, William also received a master’s in theology from the Oratory of St. Philip Neri in Toronto, Canada.
After leaving the seminary, he became music director and began teaching Gregorian chant, piano, organ and composition around Southern California. The approach William has to music has been deeply molded by the spirit and technique of plainchant through the years spent daily singing and studying with the Norbertine canons.
He now lives in Southern California with his beautiful wife and three children.
He is also the founder of Cyprian Studios, providing tuition in Organ, Piano, Chant and Composition.