About

Bruce A. Russell aka Ibrahim El Mahboob (he/him, b. 1968) is a composer and self-taught pianist living and working in Toronto (Tkarón:to, the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat). He studied at York University with James Tenney and Phillip Werren. His early years were spent playing in bands and releasing DIY cassettes of music that is adjacent to pop and classical or of an experimental nature, as well as composing predominantly electronic scores for dance, theatre and interdisciplinary productions. Frustrated by systemic racism, personal struggles and a lack of interest in his work, he stopped seeking a career in music. He continued composing in private, sometimes sharing his work through social media.

Since then, he has composed music for Gryphon Trio and the Madawaska String Quartet. Interest in his work increased in 2020, with performances by Second Note Duo, Prism Percussion, San Juan Symphony, and Idaho Falls Symphony. Arraymusic presented the first full concert of his music in November 2020. He was host of Radio Music Gallery and has written for Musicworks and I Care if You Listen. His interests are in 20th and 21st century concert music especially postminimalism, and music of the African diaspora including notated and non-notated forms. He has three children and is employed in financial services.

Email: bruce@elmahboob.com  

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Mahboob – Arabic, “the beloved one”

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