Ross Avant is a multitalented and autodidactic composer, musician, singer, playwright, poet and actor. After having seen Sir Elton John on VH1, Avant became mesmerized with the piano and began earnestly studying the instrument. Already a seasoned cornetist and trumpeter, he made his professional debut performing with the world-renowned Jim Cullum Jazz Band a few years later, aged fifteen, at the legendary jazz club, The Landing. Avant made his Carnegie Hall debut in the 2021/22 season.
When he was twenty-four, he made his professional acting debut at The Playhouse in San Antonio, TX as Tom/Jim in the San Antonio premiere of Bruce Norris' Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winning play, Clybourne Park. He has also worked on various television shows and films including HBO's Succession, The Kitchen starring Melissa McCarthy, The Irishman directed by Martin Scorsese, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon) and The Trial of the Chicago 7 written and directed by Aaron Sorkin.
In 2017, he recorded his first EP, Dream of Surrender (prod. Mark Sinko), and a forthcoming album, entitled Running Across America (prod. Ted Young), is set to be released in the fall of 2019. Avant skillfully weaves the subversive, social satire à la Randy Newman and the thoughtful, gorgeous melodies of a master like Elton John into a resplendent tapestry; replete with arresting pop hooks and fortified with Avant’s signature piano style. His popular work is an exhaustive exploration of American music covering a wide breadth of genres from rock, pop, blues, R&B, and funk, to soul, jazz, and americana.
Furthermore, Avant has eagerly moved in to recording his concert works. He is currently working on an album of original pieces for solo piano, an album of pieces for piano and strings, an album dedicated to his cello suites, an album of his piano études and nocturnes and he is writing his first opera. Avant’s concert music is an intricate and stirring amalgamation of minimalism, serialism, pop, jazz and improvisation. He has also composed music for the theatre including two productions at The City Theatre Company (Austin, TX): Cyrano de Bergerac (dir. Jeff Hinkle) and The Taming of the Shrew (dir. Levi Gore).
In addition to being a full-time artist, Avant is also religious studies academic and a philospher. His specialty is Asian religions, Chinese philosophy, philosophy of religion; he has degrees in religion and philosophy from Trinity University (BA) and the University of Edinburgh (MSc). He is also a proud member of AEA, SAG-AFTRA, BMI, The Society of Composers and Lyricists, The Society of Composers, Inc., The American Philosophical Association, The Ivors Academy, The Songwriters Hall of Fame, The Royal Asiatic Society, The American Academy of Religion, The Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy, The International Society for Chinese Philosophy, The Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies and he is a lifetime member of The Evelyn Waugh Society. He lives and works in Manhattan.
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