Maxim Cormier

Guitar Accompaniment

Maxim Cormier is one of Canada’s most decorated musicians, known to audiences both as a “genre-defying guitar virtuoso” and an award-winning composer. With training in classical, jazz, and world music, Cormier strives to reimagine what guitar mastery can sound like. Praise has come from critics including the CBC’s Bob Mersereau, who hailed Cormier’s unconventional flat-pick, steel-string interpretation of Bach as “not just a worthy experiment… [but] a revelation.”

Cormier recently celebrated the release of his latest EP, The Subjective Nothing, which included the first release of original music since 2014. In all, his six albums (four solo, two duo) have earned numerous accolades, among them a seven-year streak of taking home Francophone/Acadian Artist of the Year honors from Music Nova Scotia since 2013, as well as winning the Independent Music Awards’ Instrumental EP of the Year for Maxim Cormier plays J.S. Bach (2018) and Roots/Traditional Recording of the Year from Music Nova Scotia for Maxim Cormier: Cape Breton Guitar (2018). Cape Breton Guitar is one of two albums recorded with guitarist Gervais Cormier, Maxim’s father and a prominent collaborator in both live performance and within the studio. The more recent album, 2020’s Live @ Fortress of Louisbourg, earned concise praise from The East Magazine’s review: “This is what music is all about.”

The Nova Scotian guitarist has also established a formidable reputation as a producer for his own work and that of other musicians. After production credits that included the CBC music special Celtic Edge, Christine Melanson’s album Constellations (co-producer), and several of his own albums, Cormier founded MCP Music as his own record label in 2018, and continues to use it as a vehicle to collaborate with myriad artists.

In 2015, the Canada Council of the Arts awarded funding to Cormier to deepen his improvisational studies by studying with Jerry Granelli and Scott MacMillan. He attained his music education from Dalhousie University, where he received a Bachelor of Music as well as a Diploma in Advanced Applied Study. As an educator, he has taught students at Feis Rois in the highlands of Scotland, Fiddly Ness in Saskatchewan, the Gaelic College in Nova Scotia, and facilitated workshops for Celtic Colours International Festival’s “Roots to the Room” program. Many also know Cormier as the founder of Festival Quinzou, an annual music celebration of National Acadian Day in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

March Break Youth Session 2