Biography

Gillian Rae Perry is a composer and songwriter who enjoys finding ways that her music can break people out of their day to day routine and invite them to glimpse the extraordinary all around them. She is currently a Vanguard Emerging Opera Composer with Chicago Opera Theater. 

In 2017, Perry won the Tennessee Valley Music Festival Young Composers Competition, allowing her to have her piece, Soul’s Response, rehearsed and performed by the TVMF orchestra. In addition to TVMF orchestra, Perry’s work has been performed by the Mostly Modern Orchestra, Euclid Quartet, Aperture Duo, and members of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. In 2018, she was awarded a Composition Fellowship with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra; she was a Composer Fellow for both the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 seasons.

Perry studied abroad in Paris with the EAMA-Nadia Boulanger Institute during the summer of 2016 and the summer of 2018. During her time in Paris, she studied harmony, counterpoint, musicianship, and composition, all of which greatly influenced her process as a composer. In Paris, she learned from esteemed composers and educators Narcís Bonet, Michelle Merlet, and Philip Lasser.

Perry graduated from Southern Methodist University with degrees in both music composition and film and is greatly influenced by art forms outside of music – such as film, dance, and theatre. An avid poetry reader and writer, Perry is also influenced by text and how text can interact with music in both spoken and unspoken ways. Perry holds an MFA in music composition from The California Institute of the Arts.

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