Gerard McChrystal was born in Derry, N. Ireland. He was the first student to graduate from the Royal Northern College of Music with three awards in 1987. He did his postgraduate studies at the Guildhall School, London. During that year he reached the final of the RTE Young Musician of the year for the second time and The Royal Overseas League, London. He won the Lombard & Ulster music foundation award and the Countess of Music award. Gerard won a scholarship to study at Chicago’s Northwestern University with Fred Hemke and was awarded his Masters degree in 1988.
His UK debut was with the Philharmonia premiering Dave Heath’s Out of the Cool in 1989 at St John Smith’s Square.
Gerard has performed in over 35 countries including China, USA, New Zealand, Korea, South Africa and Azerbaijan. Collaborations include composer Philip Glass, The Soweto String Quartet, Rambert Dance Co. & London Musici. As part of Bros Saxophone Quartet, he has recorded and performed music by Salvatore Sciarrino in Milan. Pagine by Sciarrino was released on Stradivarius Records in 2016.
Gerard was an ambassador for Derry-Londonderry UK City of Culture 2013 and performed in the opening and closing concerts with artists including Snow Patrol, The Undertones and James Nesbitt.
Gerard has made 15 CDs with orchestras including BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Ulster Orchestra and London Musici. He is a Vandoren Artist. In April 2020 his latest CD was released with organist Christian Wilson. The CD was recorded in The Royal Chapel, Tower of London.