Nicholas Ma (b. 2001) is a student pianist-composer completing a double major in Piano Performance and Composition in addition to a minor in Music Theory at McGill University’s Schulich School of Music.
At McGill, Nicholas obtained two consecutive Composer-in-Residence positions for the McGill Schulich Singers (2023/24) and Brass Quintet (2022/23), in addition to a McGill commission as a result of obtaining the Luba Zuk Piano Duo Composition Prize. He also received the Luba Zuk Scholarship in Piano Performance, the Frank Mills Scholarship, and the Paul-Marcel Gélinas et Verna-Marie Parr Gélinas Piano Award, enabling him to further his studies under the tutelage of Canadian composers Melissa Hui, Jean Lesage and Chris Paul Harman, as well as Georgian concert pianist Marina Mdivani.
Nicholas’ recent activities include a commission by the Coalition for Music Education in Canada to compose a celebratory song for 2022/23 based on Mimi O’Bonsawin’s lyrics as part of the Music Monday program, a yearly event where a song of celebration is sung by hundreds of thousands of children and youth in schools and communities across Canada. This work later received a SOCAN Young Composer Award in the Under 21 Choral Category.
Nicholas also served as the Vice-President of the McGill Association of Student Composers for the 2022-2023 year, in addition to being the Schulich Liaison for the Montréal Heart of the City Piano Program. He is currently experimenting with creating works that explore the boundaries between intertextuality, layered meaning, and humor.