於舊金山音樂學院、英屬哥倫比亞大學和加拿大魁北克麥基爾大學接受音樂教育。創作類型多元，從管弦樂、室內樂到跨文化作品、電聲音樂和歌劇都廣受讚譽。早期創作曾獲義大利盧梭羅電音大賽觀眾獎、第八屆加拿大廣播公司全國青年作曲家首獎；近期作品《Forging Utopia》於2013年獲西加拿大音樂獎年度最佳古典作品。曾在加拿大歌劇公司、溫哥華歌劇院、晨間系列音樂會、溫哥華室內音樂節、溫莎加拿大音樂節和溫哥華 Sonic Boom 音樂節擔任駐團作曲家。於2004年受邀開始為國樂器創作跨文化作品。
Combining familiar musical materials and techniques with new inventions, Oliver aims for a visceral yet intelligent music that engages the audience’s perception of sound and culture.
John Oliver’s “wonderfully, creative music” (Fanfare) displays “a delicate yet often complex sense of beauty” (Musicworks). Winner of the Classical Composition of the Year Award at the 2013 Western Canadian Music Awards for his orchestral composition Forging Utopia, he has received high praise for the breadth of his creative output, from orchestral and chamber music, to intercultural works, electroacoustic music, and opera. Throughout the diversity of his work, one hears the passion for music that engages and challenges a wide audience of music lovers.
John Oliver came to international attention early in his career when he won six composition prizes for five compositions ranging from chamber to orchestral to electroacoustic music, including the Grand Prize at the 8th CBC National Young Composers’ Competition for his live electroacoustic work El Reposo del Fuego. Commissions and performances flowed from the likes of the Canadian Opera Company, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony, CBC, Vancouver New Music, St. Lawrence String Quartet, Turning Point Ensemble, New Music Concerts, and the SMCQ (Montréal), among others. Two solo releases in 2012 celebrate the breadth of Oliver’s music: Time is Dust, a DVD-audio disc of Oliver’s immersive electroacoustic music, and the CD Forging Utopia: Orchestral Music by John Oliver.