Todd Harrop (MMus ’99)

After completing his Master’s degree in Composition at the University of Victoria in 1999, Todd Harrop left Victoria for Thunder Bay to play timpani in their symphony orchestra, teach percussion at Lakehead University and play drums for the Danny Johnson Trio. He continued to compose and had works performed by the Canadian Chamber Ensemble, the CBC (a sound-documentary about farming), and the Penderecki String Quartet. Harrop also studied dance and theatre and performed in shows by Maxine Heppner, David Earle and in the Open Ears festival.

For a few years Todd focused on theatre and apprenticed as an actor at The Grand Theatre, wrote for Playwrights Canada Press and volunteered on many amateur productions in his hometown. Clarinetist Tilly Kooyman invited him to compose for a new macrotonal instrument — the Bohlen-Pierce clarinet. This work propelled him to conferences and festivals from Kitchener to Boston, Hamburg, Maribor, Cologne and Dublin. Before deciding to move permanently to Europe, Harrop engaged in residencies with the support of the Canada and Quebec Arts Councils. Especially fruitful was a two-month stint in Banff where he wrote several microtonal works.

Since landing in Germany, Todd has played timpani with the Eutiner Festspiele, new music festivals in Hamburg with clarinet-percussion-electronics group Roxy Autoconfig, and toured the country playing drums for Canadian indie pop band Plumes. Harrop is now pursuing a musicology PhD in Hamburg with Georg Hajdu on percussion-theatre. Most recently he has written a chapter for a forthcoming book edited by Manfred Stahnke, on microtonality.