Hailing from Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Gavin Fraser works double duty as a bass-baritone singer and composer. His music has been described as “fresh” and with “pithy modesty” (New York Classical Review 2017).
Fraser’s compositions have been performed across Canada, in New York City, Los Angeles, Berlin and Portugal. His music has been commissioned and performed by violinist Jonathan Crow, members of Symphony Nova Scotia, TorQ percussion, the Iris Ensemble, members of Pro Coro Canada, cellist Julian Schwarz and pianist Marika Bournaki, among others. Fraser was the composer-in-residence with the McGill Wind Orchestra (‘17-18) and is the first composer in residence with the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance (‘21-). He has received numerous awards, including from the SOCAN Foundation (2018), the Land’s End Composer Competition (‘18), the Nova Scotia Talent Trust (‘15, ‘18), the University of Toronto’s COVID-19 Global Engagement Award (‘20), and the Canada Council for the Arts’ Digital Originals Grant (’21).
Fraser completed his Bachelor of Music (Hons.) in Voice Performance and Composition at Memorial University of Newfoundland (2016), and his Master of Music in Composition at McGill University (2018). Fraser is currently pursuing his Doctorate in Composition at the University of Toronto, studying with Gary Kulesha and Gregory Newsome.
Film is an important part of Fraser’s creative output. Among many short nonfiction and fictional works made for Eastlink TV, his documentary Peace by Chocolate (2017) was premiered at the Antigonish International Film Festival and received personal recognition by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Fraser performs regularly as a chorister and soloist. He sang with the National Youth Choir of Canada in 2014, 2016, and 2017. In 2019, Fraser joined OperaQ’s production of Dido and Belinda (LBGTQ+ and gender-fluid reimagining of Dido and Aeneas) as a chorus member, and he currently collaborates as singer-songwriter and guitarist with pop producer the ai.
Teaching composition is a strong passion of Fraser’s. He has been a teaching assistant at McGill and U of T, and currently teaches a section of the Intro to Composition course at U of T. Fraser most recently served as the program director and resident composition teacher for LAMP’s 2020 Composer Workshop.