Florent Ghys

French double bassist and composer Florent Ghys’ music has been described as “highly contrapuntal, intelligent and inventive...” (WQXR-FM), and a “thrilling breed of post-minimal chamber music” (Time Out NY). While he has “mastered the American Style” (Daniel Stephen Johnson - NPR), his pieces “blend elements of minimalism, pop music, and a dose of extravagant wit” (John Schaefer, WNYC). His focus on interactive video works “has attained viral fame” (Alex Ross, The New Yorker). 

Ghys has written music for some of today’s most influential ensembles and soloists, including the Bang on a Can All-Stars, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Sō Percussion, Nick Photinos, Jack Quartet, Bearthoven, Kathleen Supove, and Dither Quartet. His music has been performed at the Lincoln Center, BAM, the Barbican Center, MIT, Sydney Opera House (in Australia), San Martin Theater (in Buenos Aires), and the Muziekgebouw (in Amsterdam).

As a professional double bass player, Ghys has performed with numerous bands and ensembles including the Paris Opera Orchestra, the Wordless Music Orchestra, Jonny Greenwood, John Cale, Ear Heart Music, Les Brutes Épaisses, and Matt McBane’s Build. He has contributed to numerous recordings such as Missy Mazzoli's Victoire, Damsel, and Dan Trueman's upcoming album. 

The music of Florent Ghys appears on more than a dozen albums, including five albums of his own productions released on Cantaloupe Music since 2009. He has produced the piece “Piano Counterpoint” composed by Steve Reich, performed by Vicky Chow, and released on Nonesuch Records in 2014. Ghys has also arranged music and worked with artists from a variety of genres, including French singer-songwriter François Cha and Broadway singer John Lloyd Young from the Jersey Boys. 

As a film composer, his collaboration with director Isabelle Solas, “En un Temps Suspendu” won the Sacem prize for short films. “L'âme de la Forêt,” a short by Julien Paumelle, was selected for the Short Film Corner at the Festival de Cannes. He has written numerous scores for ARTE channel, including a documentary about the Riot Grrl movement by filmmaker Sonia Gonzalez. 

Ghys has produced music videos for bands such as Gutbucket and Goldfeather as well as his own films. Oscillating between fixed media works, such as his hour-long video album “Télévision”, and real-time installations, such as his “Four Suburban Seasons”, Ghys has programmed a digital environment for interactive audiovisual creation during his PhD research at Princeton University and used to develop his new album “Ritournelles & Mosaïques”. 

Florent Ghys holds a Maîtrise from the University of Bordeaux in ethnomusicology with a focus on contemporary Egyptian music; a Diplôme d'Études Musicales in double bass performance from the Conservatoire of Saint-Maur-des-Fossés and the Conservatoire of Bordeaux; a M.M. in music theory and composition from New York University; and a Master of Fine Arts from Princeton University. He has received fellowships from the McDowell Colony, the Norton Stevens Fellowship, and the Procter Fellowship from Princeton University’s Graduate School. He is currently finishing his PhD dissertation in music composition at Princeton University. 


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