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Dr. Gavin Fraser has 5+ years worth of teaching experience, working with all ages and levels of experience. He has taught undergraduate-level courses, organized and led weeks-long composition workshops, has taught private one-on-one lessons, and has provided creative consulting to professional composers. 


Gavin provides private lessons and creative consulting online and in person in Montreal, QC, on a sliding-scale rate (based on need), and is also available to teach workshops.


My teaching style focuses on providing the student what they need to grow as artists. Since I work with all levels, I adapt my teaching accordingly from student to student. I give feedback and guidance without imposing my own compositional voice onto their project. I engage with practical application, focusing on technique, analysis, orchestration, structural/flow issues, balance, clear notation, and any conceptual problems the student may want help with. I analyze my students’ music without judgment, which opens the line of dialogue to discuss what the student might be struggling with in the composition. I use clear and gentle language for my feedback, as I strongly disagree with negative language as a teaching tool. I also avoid disingenuous positive feedback. 

As a pedagogue, I promise to provide a safe space for students to learn, including those of marginalized races, genders, gender identities, orientations, and socioeconomic status. My practice aims to diversify the repertoire of study for analysis, platforming and teaching from compositions not only from the Western (white, male) Canon. I also provide a safe space for creative failures and successes in my studio without judgment, as both are important to the growth of artists. 




“Our time spent with Gavin was transformational for me as a composer, both musicals and philosophically. I was exposed to various approaches to musical thought & processes, and spared the pretentious drabble that often deters aspiring composers. In the rehearsal space, Gavin never stepped on my toes or undermined the rehearsal process, but offered helpful questions to ensure that I’m listening critically - encouraging independent thought and a healthy composer-performer relationship. Across the board, Gavin supported and brought out the best in us.”


“I absolutely loved working with Gavin Fraser as an instructor. He introduced thoughtful and interesting concepts that provoked not only discussions, but inspirations and further explorations. His lessons were fun, engaging, and clearly effective pedagogically. I left feeling energized and ready to engage further with material he introduced. He is not only a good communicator, but an excellent listener. He didn’t force anyone to try to write in a specific style, but instead approached each composer with individually tailored feedback that was effective and timely. It would be an absolute pleasure to get to work with Gavin again.”

“During my lessons with [Gavin], he asked questions about my compositional process and intentions before giving feedback on the piece. This approach led to him giving suggestions that were authentic to my compositional voice and were immediately actionable in my practice.”


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