Aaron Cassidy is an American composer, conductor, teacher, record producer, and author. After 15 years of living and working in England, in 2022 he relocated to Germany, which had increasingly become the base for much of his conducting activity. He lives in Berlin and works as Professor of Composition at the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover.
As a composer, he is best known for his influential work with multicolored, graphical, tablature notations that prioritise the physical, bodily, and mechanical aspects of sound-production in music, alongside his more recent work exploring the notation of ‘non-geometrical’ rhythm, which untethers speed, duration, and meter from traditional concepts of pulse. Recordings of his work are available on 12 commercial CD releases from NEOS, Kairos, NMC, HCR, and New Focus Records, and his compositions have been presented in hundreds of performances across 27 countries.
Aaron’s work as a conductor is stylistically diverse, encompassing both contemporary and historical repertoire across chamber, orchestral, operatic, and choral settings. He has led many dozens of world premieres, including work by Richard Barrett, Mary Bellamy, Ann Cleare, Turgut Erçetin, Jürg Frey, and Erik Oña, as well as his own compositions. Through the pandemic period he built a strong reputation for his ability to learn challenging repertoire quickly as a last-minute jump-in for numerous high-profile performances. Notable recent appearances as a conductor include performances with Musikfabrik in the Großer Saal of the Berlin Philharmonie for Musikfest Berlin (Berliner Festspiele) and at the WDR Funkhaus in Cologne for the Musikfabrik im WDR series, a Swiss tour with Ensemble Proton Bern, and a monthlong engagement as conductor and Musical Director for the premiere of Ann Cleare’s opera The Little Lives at the Munich Biennale.
- Conductor, ensemble mosaik. (Einspringer/jump-in for Magnus Loddgard.) Works by Laura Bowler, Sara Glojnaric, Sergej Newski. MaerzMusik, Haus der Berliner Festspiele, Große Bühne, 21 March 2023
- Conductor, ELISION, Alex Waite, piano solo, Harry Ward, violin solo. New Music Days festival, Melbourne Recital Centre. Works by Aaron Cassidy (Piano Concerto, world premiere) & Liza Lim (Extinction Events & Dawn Chorus, Australian premiere), 20 April 2023
- I, for example, … Klangbrücken Festival, Hannover, 21 April 2023
- Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) Percussion Ensemble, under the direction of Peter Neville. Australian premiere of A republic of spaces. ANAM, Melbourne, 28 April 2023
- CD Release: Mary Bellamy, Behind the transparent surface. Ensemble Musikfabrik. Aaron Cassidy, conductor. HCR28, 28 April 2023
- Guest teacher, Line Upon Line Composer Festival, Austin, Texas, January 2023
- CD Release, A Way of Making Ghosts. Performances by ELISION, Ensemble Musikfabrik, JACK Quartet, line upon line; Manuel Nawri & Aaron Cassidy, conductors / Kairos 0015073KAI, Dec 2022
- Conductor, Ensemble Musikfabrik, ‘Adventure #9’, Cologne, Nov–Dec 2022