George Oakley is a Georgian-born American composer. After finishing the Z. Paliashvili Gymnazium for Gifted Children, Mr. Oakley continued his studies and earned a Bachelor of Music degree from the V. Sarajishvili Tbilisi State Conservatoire.
In 2001, he received a full scholarship to participate in the Piano Summer Festival at New Paltz. That same year, Mr. Oakley was the top prizewinner at the Flier International Piano Competition. In 2003, he was invited as a guest artist in the festival United Sounds of America, dedicated to the 9/11 tragedy. In 2005, he graduated from DePaul University in Eteri Andjaparidze's studio.
Mr. Oakley is a featured alumnus of the Steinhardt School at NYU, where he studied film scoring with Ira Newborn and classical composition with Justin Dello Joio. More recently, he has studied with the prominent composers Richard Danielpour and Robert Aldridge.
Mr. Oakley's piano compositions, Nostalgia & Toccata, were premiered at Carnegie Hall in 2009. “Mr. Oakley represents a return to a great tradition” (Jay Nordlinger); Piano Fantasia was premiered at Jazz at Lincoln Center in 2008. His String Quartet, Dictator, dedicated to the August war in Georgia, had its premiere at Steinway Hall in 2008 as part of a concert organized for Benefit for Georgia.
Mr. Oakley served as a co-producer, composer and music editor for the Georgian-American documentary film Misha vs. Moscow. The film was an official selection of the 10th Tbilisi International Film Festival. Misha vs. Moscow was also screened on the Documentary Channel in 2010. That same year Mr. Oakley was commissioned to write a cycle of songs for Soprano and Piano based on Shakespeare's Sonnets. The cycle was premiered in 2012 at the Carnegie Weill Recital Hall along with his large orchestral piece: Concerto for Piano, Orchestra and Chorus.
In 2014, his Sonata for Cello and Piano and his Remembrance for clarinet and piano were premiered at Merkin Concert Hall. In 2015, George Oakley's music was presented by the American Irish Historical Society. That same year Mr. Oakley served as a music arranger for A Ballerina's Tale, a documentary film about the career of African-American ballerina Misty Copeland. In 2016, the noted contemporary ensemble HELIX, with maestro Kynan Johns conducting, premiered Oakley's orchestral piece, The Magic Circle, at Le Poisson Rouge. His choral composition Stabat Mater, written for harp and chorus, was dedicated to and premiered by the acclaimed Nikolai Kachanov Singers at a sold-out concert at the Carnegie Weill Recital Hall in 2016.
“Mr. Oakley is a composer of extraordinary gifts whose music speaks to the heart as well as the mind” — Richard Danielpour.