Chris Opperman (born November 20, 1978) is an award-winning composer who has recently emerged into the mainstream. Opperman is known mostly for his work orchestrating the music of guitar heroes Steve Vai and Mike Keneally for their respective performances with Holland’s Metropole Orkest. Opperman also performed on Steve Vai’s first round of orchestral concerts and the song “Lotus Feet” was nominated for the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance. Also, the song The Attitude Song from Vai’s Sound Theories Vol. I & II album was nominated for the 2008 Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance.
However, Opperman has several albums of his own music which is essentially a cross between 90s alternative rock and his favorite 20th-century composers (Schoenberg, Stravinsky, Webern, and Zappa). His main instrument is the piano. However, he has also been known to play the trumpet and the guitar on occasion, and will rarely sing. Opperman lived in Los Angeles, California from 2000–2008 when he moved back to New Jersey where he earned a Master’s Degree in Music Theory/Composition from Montclair State University in May, 2010. Opperman now works as an adjunct professor at Montclair State University and the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, where he is earning his Ph. D. in Music Composition.