Who am I?


I was born in England in 1959.  After composition studies at Keele University with Roger Marsh and Peter Dickinson I moved to Canada in 1984 to complete a PhD at the University of Victoria with Rudolf Komorous (composition) and Doug Collinge (electroacoustic music).

From 1986 to 1988 I was Associate Director and Conductor of the Open Space New Music Series at the Open Space Gallery alongside Martin Arnold, Allison Cameron and Stephen Parkinson.  We all moved to Toronto in 1989 and co-founded The Drystone Orchestra. I was a member of Allison's ensemble ARCANA and also performed with ARRAYMUSIC, Strange Companions and others.  In 1994 I moved to Calgary and was on the teaching staff at Mount Royal College (now University), and ran the Technology Lab there. I still engineer and produce MRU's larger recording projects and work at the high level summer school for pianists and string players Morningside Music Bridge every July. I was variously Artistic Director, president and board member of New Works Calgary and produced many concerts of Albertan, Canadian and International artists over a seven-year period. I have also been active in film and multimedia work - recent collaborators include Chris Markowski, Michal Lavi, Alan Collins, Marla Hlady, Chris Myhr, Barbara Sutherland and. Gary Burns. After three years in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, where my wife Barbara Sutherland earned her MFA at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, we are once again living in Calgary, Alberta.

I was trained as a recorder player (studying with Alan Davis in Birmingham through undergrad) and I am a self-taught guitarist. There are a few CDs I play on. I'll make links to them eventually.

My music has been heard in many places, performed by Guido Arbonelli, Arcana, ARRAYMUSIC, Brandon Chamber Players, The Burdocks, Concentus Corvinus, Continuum, Les Coucous Bénévoles, The Drystone Orchestra, Eve Egoyan, Electra, Interensemble, Rosa Selvatica, George W. Welch, Windsor Symphony Orchestra and others.

Here is a pretty scary picture of me:

John Abram

and a less scary one: