"While I can't claim to be an authority on the subject of the music of this particular country I can say one thing with absolute certainty, he is without question one of his country's best composers. And how can I say that with absolute certainty, well for the obvious reason that he is obviously one of the best, most imaginative, accomplished and individual composers working anywhere in the world today."Jim Svejda KUSC Radio Southern California during his introduction to the music of Ross Harris (August 2011)

Ross Harris is one of New Zealand's leading contemporary composers of art music. His prolific output of more than two hundred compositions has seen him receive the coveted SOUNZ Contemporary Award more times than any other New Zealand composer.

Following his studies at Victoria University under Douglas Lilburn in 1971, Ross went on to receive national and international awards for his electroacoustic compositions. His compositions since span the width and breadth of the contemporary classical world, from opera to symphonic music, chamber music and electronic music. In 1985, Harris received a Queen Service Medal for his opera Waituhi created in collaboration with the libretto by Witi Ihimaera's and the CANZ Citation for Services to New Zealand Music in 1990.

Since leaving his teaching position at Victoria University in 2004 Ross has been working as a freelance composer. In 2005-6 he was Composer in Residence with the Auckland Philharmonia during which time he wrote nine pieces including two symphonies. In 2008 - 2009 he was Composer in Residence at the New Zealand School of Music in Wellington during which he wrote his Symphony No. III, Variation 25 for string quartet for the New Zealand String Quartet. Recently Ross has had premieres of his Symphony no.4, Violin Concerto no.1 (with Anthony Marwood and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra) and his Cello Concerto (with the Auckland Philharmonia and Li-Wei Qin).

In recent years, Ross's music has been released by prestigious record companies, Rattle and Naxos. His collaborations with poet Vincent O'Sullivan have produced two operas, a symphony, three song cycles and Requiem for the Fallen. One of the song cycles The Abiding Tides (for soprano Jenny Wollerman and the New Zealand String Quartet) was described by music critic Rod Biss as "...a work that instantly enriched our heritage of New Zealand music".

Born in Amberley North Canterbury New Zealand
Graduated BMus (Hons) Canterbury University
Began teaching at Victoria University Studied electronic music with Douglas Lilburn
Graduated MMus (with distinction) Victoria University
Award for To a Child - Bourges International Electroacoustic Music  Festival
Kiwi Pacific Record New Zealand Electronic Music Games Affair Suite, Poem, To a Child
Kiwi Pacific Record New Zealand Electronic Music Horizons, Shadow Music
Opera Waituhi libretto Witi Ihimaera
Queen Service Medal
Kiwi Pacific Record New Zealand NZ Flora Series Vol.1 Trio
Commission for opening of National Library Dreams,Yellow Lions CD Waiteata Collection of New Zealand Music Vol. 4 Composer  Portrait: Ross Harris 
CANZ Citation for Services to New Zealand Music
Opera Tqnz der Schwane Libretto Witi Ihimaera
CD Waiteata Collection of New Zealand Music Vol. 1 A Violin and  Piano Recital Nocturne
To the Memory of I. S. Totska SOUNZ Contemporary Award winner
Best Classical album - Strike New Zealand Percussion Music Ricochet
Chaconne for Solo Viola SOUNZ Contemporary Award finalist CD Trust Brass Aotearoa Bremner Aria
At the Edge of Silence SOUNZ Contemporary Award finalist CD Taurangi – New Zealand Flute Music Ka wawara te hau...
Labyrinth for Tuba and Orchestra SOUNZ Contemporary Award winner Jayrem CD The Mongrel in Me. Mahinarangi Tocker with Ross Harris on trumpet.
Composer in Residence with Auckland Philharmonia
Symphony no. 2 SOUNZ Contemporary Award winner
The Sleep of Reason SOUNZ Contemporary Award finalist
Symphony 3 SOUNZ Contemporary Award winner
Violin Concerto no. 1 SOUNZ Contemporary Award finalist Atoll CD Aurora Australia Senryu Attoll CD Notes from a Journey Variation 25
CD The Tudor Consort: The ‘Earthquake Mass Vobiscum in aeternum
Naxos CD Symphonies 2 and 3
World Premiere Requiem for the Fallen Naxos CD Symphony 4 and Cello Concerto Rattle CD Landscape Preludes A Landscape with too few lovers Arts Foundation Laureate Award Recipient