Neil Weisensel is a composer and conductor based in Winnipeg, Canada. His seven critically and popularly acclaimed operas have been performed over 240 times across Canada and the United States. In 2019 the Winnipeg and Regina Symphony Orchestras will premiere his newest work, a music theatre piece about Louis Riel entitled Riel: Heart of the North. Vancouver Opera premiered his anti-bullying opera Stickboy (libretto by spoken word superstar Shane Koyczan) in October of 2016. In March 2017 Kent State University in Ohio USA presented the world premiere of the orchestral version of his first opera with longtime collaborator Michael Cavanagh, Gisela in her Bathtub. The touring version of Stickboy was performed 52 times in shows across BC in spring 2016. In December of 2016 Winnipeg’s Little Opera Company presented the world premiere of his 1997 opera Merry Christmas Stephen Leacock.
Neil has collaborated with Michael Bublé on a set of big-band music and co-wrote a few songs, one of which garnered a Genie nomination in the Best Song category for the film Here’s To Life. With his wife, the vocalist/songwriter Rachel Landrecht, Neil has performed for Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Justin Trudeau and a host of other luminaries.
Neil has received grants, awards and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts (U.S.), the Canada Council for the Arts, the Manitoba, Winnipeg, and British Columbia Arts Councils, and the Banff Centre for the Arts, among others. His concert music, stage works and arrangement have been performed by the Victoria Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Opera, the Arts Club Theatre (Vancouver), Opera Lyra Ottawa, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, Vancouver New Music, the Winnipeg Philharmonic Choir, the Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra, Edmonton Opera, The Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Vancouver Intercultural Orchestra, and Edmonton’s Hammerhead Consort. Neil is part of the music faculty at Canadian Mennonite University in Winnipeg, Canada where he lives with Rachel and daughter Miracle.