Taylor Brook

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Taylor Brook, August 3, 2007

Taylor Brook (born 1985) is a composer of contemporary classical music who currently resides in New York City.


Brook was born in Edmonton but grew up in Toronto, where he attended Etobicoke School of the Arts, a specialized arts-academic public high school. His studies included guitar and violin. He then studied at the Schulich School of Music at McGill University, where he completed his Bachelor of Music degree in 2007 and earned his Master's Degree in Music Composition. For his thesis he composed Mitya, a piece for solo clarinet with 18 musicians and live electronics. It premiered in April 14, 2010, with Mark Bradley of the Portmantô Ensemble as soloist and Denys Bouliane conducting the McGill Contemporary Music Ensemble. His teachers included Brian Cherney, Denys Bouliane, Luc Brewaeys, Ana Sokolović, John Rea, and Sean Ferguson.[1][2][3][4]

Career and compositions[edit]

In 2008, he spent two months in Kolkata studying at Bhattacharya School of Universal Music with Hindustani musician Pandit Debashish Bhattacharya, studying raga on the chaturangui, a many-stringed slide guitar of Bhattacharya's invention.[2] This exposure influenced subsequent works including his 2009 composition Vocalise, for solo violin accompanied by a drone playing a continuous tone 14 cents flat of F.[5] The piece won the 2010 Lee Ettelson Composer's Award from Composers, Inc., whose artistic director is Robert Greenberg.[6][7][8]

Another 2009 composition, Murder Ballad, won the coup de cœur prize from le Nouvel Ensemble Moderne.[9][10]

His composition It’s not dark yet, but it’s getting there won the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada Young Composers Award for 2010.[11][12]

For the Nouvel Ensemble Moderne's FORUM 2010, he composed music to accompany the 2010 version of the Les trains où vont les choses series of films by Nathalie Bujold. This piece was awarded the Prix Public and second prize from the jury.[13][14][15] (The phrase Les trains où vont les choses is a play on words — "le train de choses" is an idiom for "the way things go" or "that's how it goes." The title is pluralized to reflect the grid of images in the video. The double meaning is from the fact it is filmed from a train window.)

His 2011 composition Against the Morning was commissioned by the Banff Centre. It was inspired by the third movement (Summer Morning by a Lake) of Schoenberg's Five Pieces for Orchestra.[16][17]

In 2011, Brook studied orchestral composition with Luc Brewaeys in Brussels[3] and Quatuor Bozzini recorded his piece Florescences for their album À chacun sa miniature.[18][19][20]

The ArtSpring Arts Center in Salt Spring Island announced in May 2012 that it would host a residency for Brook and Quatuor Bozzini to develop and perform a new evening-length work over the period August 1–7, 2012. The process was captured by Quebec videographer Nathalie Bujold and the audience received a preview of the result on August 4, and participated in its creation.[21][22][23][24]

Brook was a finalist in the 2012 American Composers Forum Finale National Composition Contest September 14, 2012.[25] His entry Arrhythmia was described as "a strikingly modern re-imagining of Mahler’s ninth symphony, lush and ethereal"[26]

He is the technical director of TAK Ensemble, a quintet that performs contemporary classical music, including Brook's.[27]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Taylor Brook (Bio) 2008". McGill University. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b "Taylor Brook (Bio) 2010". McGill University. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b "Taylor Brook". Columbia University, New York, Department of Music. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Miyta". taylorbrookmusic.com. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  5. ^ Vocalise - Performance instructions taylorbrookmusic.com
  6. ^ "Taylor Brook Vocalise". composersinc.org. 2010-09-10. 
  7. ^ "Composer Taylor Brook, Vocalise 2009, Mira Benjamin, violin". Composers, Inc. October 19, 2010. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  8. ^ Composers, Inc. presents new American Music
  9. ^ "2010 Forum Composers Music & Video Art". McGill University. 2010. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Murder Ballad". taylorbrookmusic.com. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  11. ^ "Taylor Brook and Marielle Groven in the 19th Annual SOCAN Foundation Awards for Young Composers" (Press release). portmanto.ca. August 26, 2010. 
  12. ^ "SOCAN FOUNDATION PRESENTS ANNUAL YOUNG COMPOSERS AWARDS" (PDF) (Press release). Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada. August 26, 2010. 
  13. ^ "Official Bio". taylorbrookmusic.com. 
  14. ^ Le Nouvel Ensemble Moderne - Les meilleurs moments du 10e Forum international des jeunes compositeurs (Highlights of the 10th International Forum for Young Composers)
  15. ^ Compositeurs FORUM 2010 NEM - le Nouvel Ensemble Moderne
  16. ^ Hubley, Alexa (March 3, 2012). "Behind the music: composers and commissions". Banff Centre. 
  17. ^ Brook, Taylor. "Against the Morning (2011) - Harmonium and ensemble". 
  18. ^ À chacun sa miniature, OCLC 778414234 
  19. ^ "À chacun sa miniature, CQB 1113". Collection QB. 2011. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  20. ^ "Florescences". taylorbrookmusic.com. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  21. ^ Taylor Brook - Quatuor Bozzini - Nathalie Bujold (Quatuor Bozzini)
  22. ^ Taylor Brook – Quatuor Bozzini – Natalie Bujo (Harbour Living)
  23. ^ Taylor Brook – Quatuor Bozzini – Natalie Bujold (ArtSpring)
  24. ^ Summer schedule promises to steam up ArtSpring stage (Gulf Islands Driftwood)
  25. ^ 2012 Finale National Composition Contest
  26. ^ "ACF and MakeMusic announce 2012 Finale Contest winner". Retrieved April 14, 2013. 
  27. ^ TAK Ensemble. "About TAK Ensemble". TAKensemble.com. Retrieved 2016-04-11. This album, Ecstatic Music, will highlight one of our most esteemed colleagues, and newly appointed Technical Director, Taylor Brook. 

External links[edit]