August 8, 1926 – December 16, 2020
Gloria Graham Stroud (Dode) was born on August 8, 1926, in Cisco, TX, and passed away on December 16, 2020, in Dallas, TX.
She began studying violin at the age of five with Wilda Dragoo and spent most of her life in the music business. She won a full scholarship to the Juilliard School of Music at the age of seventeen and studied under the renowned teacher, Louis Persinger. She also studied in Fontainbleau and Paris, France, under Jean Pasquier.
During World War II she toured the Pacific Islands playing popular music in a string quartet from Juilliard. The quartet was sponsored by the U.S.O. and played in hospital wards throughout the Pacific Islands – Guam, Siapan, Tinian, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Peleliu, Ulithi, and the Philippines.
On Okinawa she met her future husband, Layden L. Stroud, Jr. and, after returning to the states after a few years, she left Juilliard to attend S.M.U., where Layden was studying. In S.M.U. she pledged Kappa Kappa Gamma and received a Bachelor and Master of Music Degrees. She was named the most outstanding music student in S.M.U. and also won the string division of the Dealy Competition, a contest for young artists.
She and Layden were married in 1949 and that year began playing violin in the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. She represented the symphony in the first string quintet performances in the Dallas schools “Mini-Concerts”.
Active in the recording industry since 1950, she worked for 19 different recording studios in the area and recorded thousands of TV and radio commercials, hundreds of pop records including such artists as Doc Severinsen, Ray Price, Benji Albumn and John Gary. She played music festivals in Mexico, Alaska and Austria and visited 96 countries of the world.
Two of her favorite pastimes were shooting the rapids in a canoe with her husband and family and climbing mountains.
After playing violin in the Dallas Symphony for 42 years Gloria retired in 1991. As a child she played the violin for patients in her father’s hospital, as an adult she played for wounded servicemen during the war, and after retirement she played in rest homes.
She gave speeches called “Backstage at the Symphony” and demonstrated on the violin. She spoke at various clubs and churches in Dallas and surrounding towns.
Gloria belonged to the Dallas Woman’s Club and the Dallas Garden Club and was program chairman of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra League from 1991 until 2015. During various times she was an officer of the Craig Class and the Dallas Dinner Dance Club. She was past president of the Book and Drama Club, president of the Shakespeare Study Club, president of the Calliope Dance Club and president of the Heritage Club.
Her real love after music was the game of bridge. She became a Life Master bridge player.
She is survived by two daughters, Sharon Stroud and Gloria Gantner and husband Tom Gantner, and their two children, Austin and wife Liz, and Rachael; and Layden’s family, Jan Stroud and nephews and nieces.
There will be a private burial service. In lieu of flowers gifts to the Dallas Symphony Orchestra would be appreciated – Meyerson Symphony Center, 2301 Flora Street, Dallas TX 75201.
January 30, 2021
My father, Henry Brahinsky, and Gloria were great friends and musical colleagues in decades long past. Gloria and my dad loved playing violin duos together and even made a few recordings, including a quite wonderful rendition of a Leclair sonata that I treasure to this day. The story of her life and career is awe-inspiring, and I only wish I had known her better.
December 23, 2020
An AMAZING Violinist, cherished Friend and Dallas Symphony Orchestra Colleague, Gloria Stroud, passed from this earthly existence, to receive her Heavenly Reward, on 12/16/2020.
Gloria was an “Institution” in the Dallas Symphony’s 1st Violin Section and a Powerhouse on the Violin, which took her to Juilliard, SMU, and the Pacific, as a member of the ONLY “All-Women” String Quartet, performing for US Troops, during WWII.
To me, Gloria was the Definition of Elegance, Strength and Feminism, NEVER afraid to speak her mind and pursue what she thought was True, Right and Just, no matter who might disagree!!
Gloria took great pride in her Violin playing and always sought to promote those who were Up-and-Coming❤️
I will MISS your Wisdom, your Friendship, your Humor and your sense of Justice andEquality❤️
PLAY your beloved Violin for the ENTIRE Heavenly Host, for your Heavenly Family and Friends, and for ALL of us, who have been touched by your Light, in life❤️
With enduring Love and Peace❤️
December 22, 2020
I played extra with the DSO starting in the mid 1970’s. I was a percussionist and a sub, so pretty much at the bottom of the totem pole but Gloria sought me out from my first rehearsal with the DSO, introduced herself, and always made a point of engaging with me backstage or on tour. She was welcoming, gracious, friendly, and probably the classiest person I have ever known.
Jean Larson Garver
December 22, 2020
I will always remember Gloria as the lovely, kind person who took the time to welcome me to the Dallas Symphony on my first day back in September 1971. She remained one of the most loyal and gracious members of the orchestra over the many years that she served as first violinist. Even after she retired, I looked forward to her visits backstage each week, where she was always so complimentary and supportive of her former colleagues. I also loved her beautiful gift of style and clever sense of humor. She will be missed!
Jean Larson Garver
December 22, 2020
I joined the DSO the year after Gloria retired, in 1992. I quickly got to know her however, as she was very outgoing and remained active serving the orchestra. I remember her seeking me out during my first season to welcome me and to express her admiration for my playing. I think she was just being nice, as was her way, but it made me feel really good. Gloria and I worked together on several things involving the DSO over the years and she always called, or wrote me a private note of appreciation. Gloria is one of the classiest people I have ever known. I truly appreciate the way she lived her life. She made this world a better place and will be missed greatly by many. I feel very fortunate to have been a small part of her life. My sincere condolences to the family.