Ryszard Pusz is a percussionist and composer currently researching new parameters of percussion composition, performance and presentation. Exploring uncharted sonorities of the medium and purposeful interpretations he continues to develop unique playing techniques and theatrical approaches.
His career has followed two pathways of teaching and performance. In leadership positions in tertiary, secondary and professional sectors in South Australia and Oman (Middle East) he initiated and oversaw implementation of curricula, examination parameters, and promotion of gender equality. He also pioneered and developed teaching instrumental music by Distance Education – a precursor to the virtual platform he utilizes today. Additionally, his integration into performance of the recently pioneered digital orchestra recalibrates the role of soloist to one of independence from orchestral constraints.
In settings from concert halls to quarries, lakes and large public spaces, Ryszard Pusz has been commissioned by public sectors and business corporations to organize small to massed percussion ensembles up to 100 players for major events. These include Millennium and Bicentennial Ceremonies, WOMADelaide, Adelaide Festival and the 2000 Sydney Olympics. He has also performed in orchestras and at leading institutions throughout Europe, USA, Trinidad, Oman, South-East Asia, and Australia.
Ryszard Pusz introduced steelband and taiko to South Australia, and steelband to the Middle East; initiated the Percussion Society of Australia; formed percussion ensembles Adelaide Percussions, Sonitus and percusSON!; and instigated professional, community and student percussion ensemble activity at Royal Festivities and Commemorations in Oman, and International and National Festivals and Music camps in Australia.
He has commissioned and performed over 70 works by Australian and overseas composers; and performed across a wide range of cultures in varied arts genres. Collaborations include Steven Schick, Karol Szymanowski, Joji Hirota, Synergy (percussion); Elyakum Shapirra (conductor); Peter Sculthorpe and Felix Werder (composers); Kate Ceberano (jazz singer); Australian Dance Theatre and Nederlands Dans Theater (national contemporary dance theatre groups).
His recent PhD and research Masters (Elder Conservatorium, University of Adelaide), challenge conventions of percussion towards new directions of interpretation and theatrical presentation. He studied percussion most intensively with distinguished percussionists George Gaber (Indiana University, USA) and James Blades (London, UK).
Ryszard Pusz has been awarded 76 grants and an Australia Council Fellowship to present Australian compositions, and to undertake performance research in Australia, Germany, Trinidad, Poland, and Indonesia. He is a recipient of Sounds Australia Awards for his contributions to Australian Music.