BIO – suitable for programme notes

Arts laureate Ross Harris is one of New Zealand’s leading composers. He has written more than two hundred compositions including opera, symphonic music, chamber music, klezmer and electronic music. He has been a finalist in the prestigious SOUNZ Contemporary Award more times than any other New Zealand composer and won the award four times. Harris received a QSM in 1985 for his opera Waituhi with libretto by Witi Ihimaera, the CANZ Citation for Services to New Zealand Music in 1990 and the CANZ Trust Fund Award in 2016.. His major works include six string quartets, six symphonies, a violin concerto (premiered by Anthony Marwood in 2010) and a cello concerto (premiered by Li-Wei Qin in 2012). The symphonies and the concertos are available on the Naxos Label. His collaborations with poet Vincent O’Sullivan have produced two operas, two symphonies, three song cycles and Requiem for the Fallen. One of the song cycles The Abiding Tides(for soprano Jenny Wollerman and the New Zealand String Quartet was described by music critic Rod Biss as “…a work that instantly enriched our heritage of New Zealand music”. His Requiem for the Fallen (2014) has been described as “a devastating commentary on the ravages of war.” and “This was a never-to-be-forgotten experience for all who attended.”