Leonid Galaganov

improviser composer multi-instrumentalist

photo by Peter Gannushkin

photo by Peter Gannushkin

Leonid Galaganov is a New York City based multi-instrumentalist, improviser and composer from a remote Russian Old Believer settlement in Estonia. Embracing a wide spectrum of music practice traditions and perspectives on sound and its meanings, Leonid has been performing and recording on various instruments since 2003 in bands and orchestras, jazz, gamelan and chamber ensembles in Europe, the US and South America. 


His current projects gather unique musicians together to realize the poetry of sound through diverse languages of improvisation and structure; engaging in rituals to manifest the invisible mystery with sound and to vitalize the interaction between conscious and unconscious. In the past year, Leonid recorded his trio with William Parker and Anais Maviel, and his quartet with Billy Drewes, Drew Gress and Zack Clarke in addition to fruitful collaborations and projects with many others.


As part of his formal education, Leonid studied orchestral conducting at Tallinn University as well as music performance and composition at NYU, from where he graduated with a BM in jazz studies; currently he's going to SUNY Purchase for a Master's degree in classical composition. In his present performance practice Leonid uses the drum kit, shakuhachi, waterphone, hand drums and other percussion instruments.