Pratik Gandhi is a conductor, percussionist, clinician, and researcher based in Toronto. He currently serves as music director of the Rouge River Winds and resident conductor of the Toy Piano Composers Ensemble. Pratik is currently a finalist for music director positions with the Northdale Concert Band and the Cathedral Bluffs Symphony Orchestra. Previously, he has served as assistant conductor of Symphony on the Bay (now the Burlington Symphony Orchestra) for five years, and as associate conductor with the Toronto Youth Wind Orchestra for three years. In November 2019, as guest conductor with TYWO, Pratik shared the podium with composer-conductor Johan de Meij, and led the ensemble in a piece featuring soloist Joe Alessi, principal trombone of the New York Philharmonic.
In frequent demand as a guest conductor and adjudicator across southwestern Ontario, Pratik serves as adjudicator and Vice-Chair for the concert band division of MusicFest Canada, as well as syllabus coordinator for the OBA Provincial Band Festival. He also adjudicated concert bands at the 2017 Alberta International Band Festival in Calgary. Pratik regularly presents workshops on conducting techniques, wind repertoire, and percussion pedagogy.
Pratik is also a champion of new music, and has conducted the premiere of numerous works for orchestra, wind band, and chamber ensembles. Under his leadership, the Rouge River Winds have helped to commission new works from Steven Bryant, Giovanni Santos, and Bill Thomas. With the Toy Piano Composers, Pratik has directed the premieres of works by Elisha Denburg, Alex Eddington, August Murphy-King, and Monica Pearce, among many others. Pratik is credited as conductor on three albums of contemporary music: Bekah Simms’ impurity chains (conducting two tracks, including the Juno-nominated “Granitic”); the Toy Piano Composers’ self-titled debut album; and the recent premiere recording of Benjamin Sajo’s The Great War Sextet.
Pratik received a B.Mus. in music education and an M.Mus. in conducting from the University of Western Ontario. He is currently a doctoral student at York University in Toronto, researching issues of equity and representation among wind band composers in Canada. His article, “Composer Representation in Canadian Wind Band Festival Lists”, was published in the Fall 2020 issue of Canadian Winds. For more information, please visit www.pratikgandhi.ca .