Matthew Riley is an award-winning composer and arranger based in Minneapolis. He has composed for radio and TV commercials and scored music for documentary films. He has worked in charting and orchestration for TV shows including NBC's The Voice. He has arranged and orchestrated hundreds of songs for churches and recording artists. Several of his pieces have been featured on JW Pepper's Editor's Choice list and various festival lists. His pop-classical arrangements have been heard in theaters, churches, schools and performed by orchestras in the Americas, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia.
Matt’s philosophy for music: “I want to move and inspire audiences and musicians alike with my music. My mission in life is to share things that I find beautiful, sad, awe-inspiring, euphoric, and sublime with the world. I am not a particularly eloquent person, so I choose to do this through the language of music. My hope is that every performance of my music is a memorable, powerful, and emotionally connective experience between the performers and listeners.
Some of my pieces may be difficult to master but I believe that when musicians love what they are playing, they will rise to the challenge. For conductors, one of the most important things about leading an ensemble is that you engage with your musicians about playing music that they love. Once you start engaging students in this way, they start practicing more and they start playing their instruments more musically. The difficulty level of a piece of music doesn’t matter as much when they love the music that they are learning.
My goal for every piece I write is that it would be a challenging yet rewarding experience marked with growth on their instrument ultimately culminating in a performance that connects with the audience on a deep level."
"I really love your arrangement and production and still can't get over what feels like a miracle in finding your website and having the opportunity to contribute a musical statement myself to your superb work. You also inspired me to look more into how I could learn how to create good music myself using the fine digital technologies available. Thank you!"
- E. Dixon., San Bruno, CA
"One of the greatest joys of being a music teacher is that I get to do new music every year (year 32). When I heard your music this summer, I got so excited to come back to school. Your music has so much passion, energy, and beauty in it. .... [I] was blown away when I heard your music. Like a kid in a candy store, I bought 5 pieces that night."
- Mark A., Pleasanton, CA
"Thanks for your creative genius and attention to discipline and detail!...Absolutely Amazing! I am overwhelmed and overjoyed! Your parts, and how they are expressed have such precision and feeling!...The string track is magnifico! From its beginning to its ending, you did an excellent job of creating meaningful movements within the song."
- Kenneth G., Minneapolis, MN