2018 ASCAP Columbia University Film Scoring Workshop

Amir Mortezai

Amir Mortezai

Amir Mortezai, originally from Chester, New Jersey, is a composer, pianist, and teacher based in the East Coast. The classical style and the blues are his biggest influences; however, his musical roots are branched across many genres and he draws his inspiration from a sea of sources – from the contrapuntal tapestry of Bach to the rustic associations of Bob Dylan; the organizing power and force of form in Beethoven to the soundscapes of Radiohead.

He has sought national and international collaborations with artists throughout the United States, Italy, Ireland, France, Czech Republic, and Iran, including the JACK quartet, the NYU Percussion Ensemble, the Collailm Duo, the NYU Contemporary Ensemble, the NYU Symphony, and Italian guitarist Flavio Virzi among others. At New York University he ran the gamut focusing on concert music, songwriting, and film scoring, as well as spending time inside the studio to master the art of film scoring technique and sound production. As a film scorer he's worked with directors from the Tisch School at NYU, scoring animated, documentary, and drama films.

After many years of autodidactic study, mostly spent over the scores of Beethoven, Mozart, Bach, and Wagner, he began his formative studies in composition in 2010 with Dr. Philip Lasser of the Juilliard School, privately studying composition, harmony, counterpoint, fugue and analysis - an experience which greatly informed his understanding of the suggestive power of tonal music.

Amir then went on to receive his M.M. in Music Theory and Composition from NYU with an accompanying scholarship in 2016, where he delved into the nuances of film scoring, concert music, and orchestration with Paul Chihara. He rounded out his studies in a workshop setting under the close guidance of Pulitzer-prize winning composer Julia Wolfe. He’s attended and performed in numerous composition festivals in Europe including the European American Musical Alliance in Paris, the highScore New Music Festival in Pavia, Italy, and the CASMI Program in Prague, Czech Republic.

Amir earned his B.M. in Classical Piano Performance from Rutgers University in 2007 but is enthused with all aspects of keyboard performance. He frequently collaborates with local musicians performing classic rock, boogie, and blues-infused folk music.

As a music educator he's also passionate and very active. He's had private studios in New Jersey and New York City since 2007 where he instructs eager learners in piano, music theory, and composition. He's currently on the faculty at the Montclair State Extension Division. He also serves as a judge for the NJ Music Educator's Association for their year-end auditions which he enjoys greatly. He also tutored Music Theory at the Steinhardt School at NYU. In 2016 he was a judge for the lifetime A cappella TV show Pitchslapped!, for their inaugural season.


2018 ASCAP Columbia Film Scoring Workshop