A founding member of the Juno Award-winning Gryphon Trio, cellist Roman Borys is one of Canada’s most active chamber musicians and producers. The Gryphon Trio tours regularly throughout Canada, the United States and Europe and to date the ensemble has released 16 celebrated recordings for the Analekta label. Roman has been Artistic Director of the Ottawa Chamber Music Society since 2008, programming over 100 concerts per season for the Society’s annual Chamberfest, and oversees the production of the Gryphon Trio’s various projects and outreach initiatives.
As a producer, Borys oversaw the theatrical development of Christos Hatzis’ Constantinople. An 85-minute multi-media celebration of cultural diversity, Constantinople brings the Gryphon Trio together with two vocalists in a performance environment that is enriched by projected visuals, lighting and staging. Premiered in 2004, Constantinople has toured throughout Canada and been performed in the US and at the Royal Opera House’s Linbury Studio in London, England. Other multi-media projects include several Gryphon Trio projects combining chamber music with projected images, including Chan Ka Nin’s And the masks evoke… and Landscapes for the End of Time, which pairs Messiaen’s classic Quartet for the End of Time with landscape paintings by Canadian artist Stephen Hutchings.
Borys is passionate advocate of audience development initiatives. In 2010 he conceived and launched Listen Up! in Almonte, Ontario. A groundbreaking classical music outreach model, Listen Up! teaches the skills needed for a lifetime appreciation of classical music through a hands-on workshop in basic musical composition and involves an entire community in collaborative arts creation. Listen Up! Almonte, was a 9 month project in which 30 grade 8 students from Almonte’s Naismith Memorial Public School wrote poetry and composed music for their own school choir and the Gryphon Trio. Future Listen Up! projects are planned across Canada in upcoming seasons.
A native of Toronto, Canada, Roman Borys studied with Janos Starker at Indiana University and Aldo Parisot at Yale University. Borys now teaches at the University of Toronto Faculty of Music along with Gryphon Trio pianist Jamie Parker and violinist Annalee Patipatanakoon. Outside of chamber music, Borys enjoys contributing to film sound tracks and has been featured in Kenneth Lonnergan’s You can count on me and Guy Madden’s The saddest music in the world.
Photos by John Beebe, Toronto