about john

john andrew


John Andrew Wilhite-Hannisdal is an Oslo-based composer, musician, and sound artist whose work blurs lines between genres and disciplines.

John Andrew's projects engage with a wide range of found sounds, archival, and field recordings. What unites a diverse body of work, is not a desire to use music to reflect upon the world, but a desire to directly engage with the world through music. John Andrew's works invite performers to listen to and interact with the extra-musical, which could mean the non-living, the non-human, the more-than-human, or cultural and historical phenomena, as we search together for the limits of communication and the social. John Andrew leads the project Torsketromming with scientist Rebekah Oomen. Their work recording, studying, and making music together with cod fish is changing how we view the sociality of fish, and how we can help rekindle dwindling cod populations. Read an in depth article here.

His compositions and arrangements have been performed at series and festivals such as Barents Spektakel, Sacred Realism, METEOR, and the Ultima Festival. He is a recipient of a comission from the VOeX program at The Norwegian National Opera, and was a featured artist at Nordic Arts Lab. Recent premiers include the floating performance-installation "Cod Connection" at Only Connect 2022 at the Munch Museum, and Kunngjøringer fra pariserkommunen at the Norwegian National Opera. His most recent work, Bristol Silence, recieved national media attention for its exploration of themes surrounding musicians' political responsibility, specifically illuminating the complex, yet potentially problematic history of the Norwegian Radio Orchestra. Read an in depth interview with John Andrew here.

As a performer, John Andrew works regularly with artists such as Elliott Sharp, and the Andreas Røysum Ensemble. A regular guest at festivals for both jazz and contemporary music, this years engagments include ArteActs (AU), Moers Festival (DE), Oslo Jazz Festival (NO), and Östersjöfestivalen (SE).

John Andrew is holds Masters degrees in both double bass performance and composition from the Norwegian Academy of Music, where he studied with Håkon Thelin (bass), and Trond Reinholdtsen (composition). His projects focused on the music of Stefano Scodanibbio and Håkon Thelin, and on linguistic reconciliation with loss through music.

John Andrew also has a degree in Music Composition from Reed College (Portland, Oregon), where he studied with David Schiff.

He studied at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music (New York) as a pupil of Reggie Workman. .

John Andrew studied Slavic art and philosophy. He worked for philosopher Boris Groys at NYU and was research assistant to Evgenii Berstein at Reed College.

press photo: 

Credit, Christer Männikus