Clark was born in Simcoe Ontario into a musical family. His mother, a piano teacher and his grandparents both singers inspired Clark to choose a pathway of music as a profession. Clark began formal studies at age four and wrote his first compositions at age six.
In his youth, Mr. Bryan trained with longtime pupil of the renowned pianist Géza Anda, Antonia Mazanova. She helped him gain an appreciation for music of all styles. Mr. Bryan did his formal training at the University of Western Ontario studying solo piano with John Paul Bracey and Sonja Behrens as well as chamber music with Ronald Turini and Peter Smith. In 1992 he graduated with both Bachelor and Masters Degrees in piano performance.
Mr. Bryan has worked with many of the world’s renowned pianists including Howard Shelley, Jean Paul, Sevilla, Eugene List, Shura Cherkasky, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Ruth Slenczynska and Ronald Turini. Mr. Bryan spent many years working with the celebrated pianist Cécile Ousset both in Paris and the south of France where he refined much of his pianistic and interpretive abilities.
Clark ’s performance career has taken him to Europe , Mexico the United States and throughout Canada . He has done performances for CBC radio and television including a broadcast recital in 2002 at the Glenn Gould Studio, CBC. He has adjudicated music festivals from St. John’s to Vancouver. Mr. Bryan has done extensive music editing including the New Millennium Piano Series for Conservatory Canada. A recent project of note is a book entitled: “Gateways to Learning and Memory” published in 2009.
Mr. Bryan has recorded eleven albums of solo piano music including two Canadian Music Centre (CMC) award nominated CD’s of the piano works of the Canadian Composer Rémi Bouchard. He has also recorded the Suites for two pianos by Serge Rachmaninoff with duo partner Marion Miller to rave revues. His most recent recordings include the complete Chopin Nocturnes.
Mr. Bryan received the “Special Teacher” award 2004 given by the London Branch of the Ontario Registered Music Teacher’s Association and has been nominated three times for a Jack Richardson music award. He has done workshops for piano teachers and musicians throughout Canada. January 2005, Mr. Bryan was named Musical Personality of the Year by the London Free Press. Mr. Bryan is current the President of the London Branch of the Ontario Registered Music Teachers Association.
In 2004-2005 Mr. Bryan was invited by London’s City Council to serve as a member of the Creative Cities Task Force, an initiative designed to recognize and promote art, culture and lifestyle in London, Ontario.
In 2004, Mr. Bryan purchased the Aeolian Performing Arts Centre and School of Music, a magnificent acoustic marvel in London, Ontario. This hall was built in 1883 as the Town Hall for East London and has a rich musical history. The Hall was awarded four times “Best Live Venue in London” (Jack Richardson Music Awards) and “Top 10 Venues in Canada” (CBC radio 3) under Clark’s leadership. Mr. Bryan is highly involved in presenting and promoting music and the arts through this venue.
In October 2017, Mr. Bryan was awarded Western Alumni Award of Merit and inducted into the Don Wright Faculty of Music Wall of Fame (2017).
I believe that music is a great gift to us and that access to art and culture is a universal right. Experiencing art and music is an essential part to a rich life-journey. Teaching is a great privilege and helping students find unique ways to learn and build “self” is a key role of the teacher.
All music guidance should be tailored to the individual. No “one size” fits all when it comes to education in general. Group teaching should also adapt to the particular students in that group.
I have taught all levels for 39 years. My background is a pedigree of educators; my father was a teacher/education administrator and my mother is a piano teacher. I have participated in writing curriculums for two National Conservatories and have edited The New Millennium Piano Series for Conservatory Canada. Some of my students have had exceptional accomplishments including acceptance to University programs in music at Yale, Julliard and many other renowned Universities. For many years I have sent senior students to participate in Master Classes in the South of France with the renowned pianist Cecile Ousset.
I am passionate about teaching all levels and abilities. I believe in a wholistic approach to pedagogy and have taught music appreciation, music theory, harmony, history, counterpoint and pedagogy. I’m also an advocate for lighting fires in the area of creative revolutionary approaches to learning. I am especially interested in the El Sistema program philosophy and its social justice lens of providing the very best music education to those who would normally not get access to it. This Sistema lens includes a heavily weighted eye for social development and transferable skill.
Biography: short form
As an award winning concert pianist, Clark Bryan has performed internationally, recorded 14 CD’s and has been featured on radio and television. As a teacher, Mr. Bryan has taught thousands of students, adjudicated more than 50 music festivals coast to coast in Canada, given dozens of workshops and written a book “Gateways to Learning and Memory”.
The founder of The Aeolian Performing Arts Centre, Clark believes that everyone should have universal access to music, art and culture. Because of this belief, he launched El Sistema Aeolian in 2011. This free, intensive music program has offered more than 150 children and youth an opportunity to experience the joy of a rich musical education.
Mr. Bryan is engaged in community activism and speaks regularly at events, on radio and television and has given a TED talk about the power and joy of music study.