Gabriel Erkoreka was born in Bilbao, Spain in 1969. He studied with Carmelo Bernaola, graduating with honours in composition, piano and chamber music. In 1995 he entered the Royal Academy of Music to study composition with Michael Finnissy where he obtained the DipRAM and a Masters degree with distinction from the University of London – King’s College, and was appointed Fellow of Composition 1997-98.
Erkoreka's work has been performed in the Venice Biennale 2004; the Musikverein in Vienna; the South Bank Centre, Spitalfields Festival, ICA and Wigmore Hall in London; the ISCM World Music Days in Manchester; Amsterdam’s Muziekgebouw; the 2007 New Paths in Music Festival and the Symphony Space in New York; the Crown Hall in Chicago; the Toru Takemitsu Festival 1999 in Tokyo; Festival ‘Aujourd’hui Musiques’ in Perpignan; Festival Internacional de Alicante, the Auditorio Nacional and Centro de Arte ‘Reina Sofía’ in Madrid; and in other cities including Paris, Berlin and Sydney.
Composition prizes for Erkoreka's works include the Premio de Roma awarded by the Spanish Academy in Rome in 2001; Premio INAEM - Colegio de España in Paris; First Prize of the Premio SGAE in Madrid, several prizes at the Royal Academy of Music including the Josiah Parker Prize, and the Prize of the Basque Government (1999). He was selected to participate in the ISCM Festivals in Manchester 1998 and Hong Kong 2007, in the UNESCO International Rostrum of Composers in Paris, and for the International Gaudeamus Music Week. Recently he has obtained the “Reina Sofía” Composition Prize.
Erkoreka's music has been recorded and broadcast by the BBC, WDR, RAI, RNE and other radio stations from various countries including Australia, Argentina and Holland; several of his works are available on CD, edited by Stradivarius, Verso, FNAC and LIM records. He has received commissions from various institutions including the Nieuw Ensemble, the Biennale für Neue Musik-Hannover, the INAEM, Spanish Ministry of Culture, Fundación Autor, Guggenheim Museum, the Orquesta de la Comunidad de Madrid, Orquesta Sinfónica de Euskadi, Bilbao Symphony Orchestra, Festival ENSEMS-Valencia, the Quincena Musical and the RAM. He was appointed composer-in-residence of the JONDE (Young Spanish National Orchestra) for 2001-02.
In 2001, Gabriel Erkoreka was elected an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music . He has been invited to give lectures at the Instituto Cervantes in London, Manchester and Chicago; the CDMC-Encuentros con los Jovenes Compositores in Madrid; the Festival BBK Músicas Actuales in Bilbao, and at the Estoril Music Festival in Portugal. As a pianist, he has given solo and chamber music concerts in England and Spain. His orchestral debut was in April 1998, playing Ravel's Concerto in G with the Bilbao Symphony Orchestra. He is founder member of the Trio Bernaola and composer-in-association of the ensemble KANTAK. He currently lives in London and teaches composition at MUSIKENE-Basque Country Superior Conservatoire.