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Andrew Balfour
Composer/ Sound Designer

Of Cree descent, (member of Fisher River First Nation) Toronto based composer Andrew Balfour is an innovative composer/conductor/singer/sound designer with a large body of choral, instrumental, electro-acoustic and orchestral works.
Andrew has also worked and collaborated with many of Canada’s leading Indigenous musicians. In 2018, Andrew took part in the Indigenous Classical Music summit at the Banff Centre for the Arts, and after Covid 19 restrictions, will co-lead this summit with Cris Derksen in December of 2021.

Take the Indian (A Vocal reflection on Missing Children), Empire Étrange: The Death of Louis Riel, Migiis: A Whiteshell Soundscape, Bawajigaywin (Vision Quest), Gregorio’s Nightmare, Wa Wa Tey Wak (Northern Lights), Fantasia on a Poem by Rumi, Missa Brevis and Medieval Inuit, Quamaniq, Manitou Sky-An orchestral tone poem. His new Indigenous Opera, Mishabooz’s Realm was recently premiered in Montreal and Halliburton, Ontario, commissioned by L’Atelier Lyrique de Opéra de Montréal and Highlands Opera Workshop. He has also been commissioned by the Winnipeg, Regina and Toronto Symphony Orchestras, Tafelmusik, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, Ensemble Caprice, Groundswell, the Winnipeg Jazz Orchestra, the Winnipeg Singers, the Kingston Chamber Choir and Camerata Nova, among many others. His works have been performed and/or broadcast locally, nationally and internationally.

In 2010, he wrote a major orchestral work called Oscana, for Buffy Sainte-Marie and the Regina symphony Orchestra. He has worked and collaborated extensively with artists such as Jeremy Dutcher, Cris Derksen, Tara Louise Montour, Lindsay ‘Eekwol’ Knight, Eliot Britten, Madeline Alakkariallak, Sylvia Cloutier, Sheryl Sewepagaham, Walter White Bear MacDonald, Melody McKivor, Sonny Day-Rider, Vince Fontaine, and bands Eagle and Hawk and Indian City. He has collaborated with award winning Indigenous writers such as Katerina Vermette and Dr. Duke Redbird. In 2017, while writing and performing in his Indigenous opera, Mishabooz’s Realm, he worked and was advised by Mohawk elder from Kahnawake, Kevin Deer. As well, he has worked with non-classical artists and dancers such as Brian Solomon, Patti Shaughnessy, and Mariana Medellin.

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