Aaron Gervais is composer of new classical/avant-garde music, born in Edmonton in 1980. He received a Bachelor of Music with Honours from the University of Toronto, and a Master’s degree from the University of California at San Diego. He has also pursued studies at the Koninklijk Conservatorium in the Hague, Netherlands. Aaron’s teachers have included Chan Ka Nin (CA), Chinary Ung (US), Philippe Manoury (FR), and Martijn Padding (NL), and he has also participated in masterclasses with renowned composers from around the world. Prior to studying composition, Aaron studied jazz drumming and Cuban folkloric percussion, including a summer of private study in Havana in 2002.
Aaron has had performances and commissions from major ensembles in several countries, and his music has been performed across North America and Europe and broadcast on CBC Radio/Radio-Canada. Prominent festivals have presented Aaron’s work, including Amsterdam’s prestigious Gaudeamus Music Week (his piece Culture no.1 was selected for their 2006 competition); Toronto’s New Wave, soundaXis, and SHIFT festivals; Aberdeen’s Sound Festival; and New York’s MATA Festival. He was additionally selected as a representative for Canada in the 2008 World Music Days in Lithuania. One of his solo pieces, Flüsse-Einflüsse, was chosen as a required exam piece for the graduating accordion students at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik – Trossingen in 2006.
Aaron was selected as the winner of the orkest de ereprijs’s International Young Composers Competition in the Netherlands in 2009. He has also received various other awards and grants, including a Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Emerging Artist Award (2008), five prizes in Canada’s SOCAN Awards for Young Composers (2009, 2008, 2006, 2004, 2004), a SOCAN residency grant (2006), numerous academic scholarships, and commissioning, travel, project, and study grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Alberta Foundation for the Arts.