Terry Riley (composer, pianist, vocalist) launched the minimalist movement with his classic IN C, composed in 1964, a seminal work, which was to have an enormous impact on the course of western music. His music has been played in the great concert halls throughout the world and his discography includes 60 recordings on labels such as Columbia Masterworks, Wergo and Nonesuch.
He attended San Francisco State University and the University of California graduating with a masters degree in music. He studied composition with Robert Erickson and piano with Adolf Baller.
He was professor of composition 1971-1981 at the prestigious Mills College in Oakland California. Besides concertizing, he has given lectures and seminars in the USA, Europe and Australia.
He is a recipient of 2 NEA grants, a Guggenheim fellowship and a Fromm foundation grant for music composition. He holds honorary doctorate degrees from Chapman University and Cal Arts
In addition to his solo piano concerts, Mr. Riley performs extensively with his son, classical guitarist Gyan Riley and also appears in duo with saxophone virtuoso, George Brooks. Over his career, he has worked with Zakir Hussein, Chet Baker, Krishna Bhatt, John Zorn, Leonard Slatkin and the Kronos Quartet.
Terry has been a student of Indian Classical Music since 1970 when he became a disciple of the great Kirana master, Pandit Pran Nath. He accompanied Pran Nath-ji in his many concerts over a period of 26 years until his passing in 1996. He is a prolific composer having written in virtually every form including solo piano, a chamber opera, a triple concerto for 2 guitars and violin, a violin concerto, a piano concerto, works for choir and orchestra and 23 works for string quartet which include a string quartet concerto and a piano quintet. His concerto for electric violin was premiered at Carnegie Hall in New York on May 13, 2012 and a new concerto for organ and orchestra premiered at Walt Disney Hall in Los Angeles April 9-11, 2014.
Terry was named one of the 1000 makers of the 20th century by the Times of London. His music is published worldwide exclusively by G. Schirmer.
“Gyan Riley is a one-man American-music machine, amicably ranging across the fields of jazz, world music, and post-minimalism.” (The New Yorker) Having won his first guitar in a raffle when he was 12 years old, he now focuses on his own compositions, improvisation, and various collaborations. Gyan has been commissioned by the Kronos Quartet, New Music USA, the Carnegie Hall Corporation, the American Composers Forum, and the New York Guitar Festival. He has performed with artists such as Zakir Hussain, Lou Reed, John Zorn, Bill Frisell, the Kronos Quartet, Lee Ranaldo (of Sonic Youth), Iva Bittova, Julian Lage, the Bang-On-A-Can All-Stars, Bryce Dessner, Nico Muhly, Glenn Kotche, the San Francisco Symphony, and his father, the composer/pianist/vocalist Terry Riley. Terry and Gyan recently scored a new film by writer/director François Girard (The Red Violin) entitled Hochelaga, Terre des Âmes, that premiered at the 2017 Toronto Film Festival and was selected as Canada’s pick for best foreign language film category at the 2018 Oscars. Gyan has four solo CD titles and many collaborative recordings. His fourth solo album, Sprig, was released in March on the National Sawdust Tracks label and is currently up for consideration for Best Classical Instrumental Solo for the 2019 Grammy Awards. Gyan currently resides in New York City and actively tours worldwide.
“Beautiful and enigmatic”…”an alluringly intimate vibe created from the first note.”
-The New York Times –