Having grown up in Beloeil in the Montreal far suburb, François Richard had the privilege at the age of 10 to be tutored by the master of classical flute Jean-Pierre Rampal and also by Gail Grimstead. He pursued his studies in both flute and piano at the “Conservatoire de musique de Montréal”. In 1976 he founded with vibraphonist Jean Vanasse the Orchestre Sympathique. The group made several international tours, including performances at some very prestigious jazz festivals such as Paris, Brussels, Detroit, Aarhus and Montreal.
He has collaborated to some films soundtracks, namely “Les Bons Débarras” (Juno Award) with Bernard Buisson. As a concert producer (CMFR) François Richard was nominated five times for a Prix OPUS award in Quebec, and he is leading many ensemble such as Nouvel Orchestra (which released a CD listed among the Top 10 jazz CD of 2008 in “La Presse”) and he has toured in France, Quebec and played at New York’s iconic Lincoln Center.
Throughout his career, François has played with renowned musicians such as Don Alias, Gary Bartz, Jaco Pastorius, Michel Donato, David Binney, Mark Feldman, Sylvain Beuf and has recorded many times for Radio-Canada (international) for shows like Jazz Beat and Jazz sur le Vif. The recent album AZIMUT[H] , produced by is independent Label CMFR was nominated in the category Best Instrumental Album of the year 2015 at the ADISQ and finalist in the category “Jazz and world music concert of the year ” at GALA – Prix Opus.
The album is also featuring Helmut Lipsky on violin and Matt Herskowitz on piano. François also teaches Pop-Jazz flute at the University of Sherbrooke and Université du Québec à Montréal(UQAM).