Christopher Zuar’s music has been performed by the Brussels Jazz Orchestra, The Westchester Jazz Orchestra, the New York Youth Symphony, the New York/BMI Jazz Orchestra, and the Hall High School concert jazz band among others.
Feeling at home writing both contemporary jazz and classical, Zuar’s music has been hailed by acclaimed pianist and composer Mike Holober as “...clever, intuitive, engaging, accessible and ultimately beautiful.” His compositions explore rich harmonies, lyrical melodies, and atmospheric textures that combine to create a compositional voice wholly his own.
Zuar has garnered numerous awards and commissions. He is the recipient of the ASCAP Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composer’s Award (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017), the First Music Commission from the New York Youth Symphony (2011, 2012 and 2015), the 2016 ASCAP Johnny Mandel Prize, and reached the finals in the 2013 Brussels Jazz Orchestra International Jazz Composition Competition. His most recent work, Native Tongue, received its premiere by the NYYS Jazz in May of 2016 in the Appel Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center.
Zuar holds a bachelor of music degree from the New England Conservatory of Music, and a master of music degree from the Manhattan School of Music both in jazz composition. Most recently, Zuar assembled a world-class group of musicians to record his debut album, Musings, a collection of eight original compositions for large ensemble. The recording was released on Sunnyside Records, and has gone on to receive critical acclaim, including a spot on DownBeat magazine's "Best Albums of 2016", and runner-up "Debut of The Year" in the NPR Jazz Critics Poll.