M I N E M O T O
B i o g r a p h y
Since the age of sixteen, Vancouver based pianist and composer, Sharon Minemoto has been performing to audiences around the world.
In 1997, Sharon started her own quintet which performs her original compositions and has recorded four shows for CBC Radio as well as a CD released on Cellar Live Records entitled, “Side A”.
In addition to composing, she puts her arranging talents to work on standards and pop tunes for her trio which came out with their debut CD called “You Can See The Ocean From Here” in the spring of 2008. Both albums spent considerable time in the Top 10 Jazz Albums on Canada’s Chartattack.
More recently, she has been working with her new quartet which includes Jon Bentley on saxophone, bassist Adam Thomas, and drummer Bernie Arai.
Sharon’s groups have been featured at the Vancouver International Jazz Festival, The Vernon Jazz Club, The Okanagan Jazz and Blues Society, The Powell Street Festival, The Hornby Island Arts Festival, Festival Vancouver, The Beatniq Jazz Club in Calgary, The Yardbird Suite Jazz Club in Edmonton, the Jazz On The Wing series in Whitehorse, YT and at Club JZ in China.
As a sideperson, Sharon has performed in ensembles led by Alan Matheson, Cory Weeds, Fred Stride, Dee Daniels, Joani Taylor, Laura Crema, James Danderfer, Ali Ryerson, Karin Plato, Jennie Emery, Steve Maddock as well as the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and the Phoenix Chamber Choir.
Sharon is also part of a funk/jazz/reggae collaborative called SiMmeR with bassist, Matt Reid and drummer, Richard Brown. In March 2006, she toured Europe with Persian pop legend, Dariush.
Sharon holds her Bachelor’s Degree in Jazz Performance from Capilano College in North Vancouver. While she was a student there, she was selected from applicants across North America as the pianist for the IAJE (International Association of Jazz Educators) College All-Star Band.
Since graduating, she has studied with pianist Geoff Keezer in 1999 and in 2000 she received a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts to study composition with Don Thompson in Toronto. From September-December of 2010 Sharon studied with pianists, Renee Rosnes and Kenny Werner in New York City with funding from The Canada Council for the Arts and the BC Arts Council.
Sharon is a faculty member at the School of Music at Vancouver Community College.
She has also taught at workshops and masterclasses at the UBC Summer Music Institute, The Shawnigan Lake Music Workshop, Capilano College, the Smithers Jazz Retreat, the Douglas College Jazz Institute and at the Shanghai International School.
As an adjudicator she has worked at the Vancouver School Board Jazz Festival and at the Rotary Music Festival in Whitehorse, YT. In addition to her work in festivals, she has served on the selection commitee for The Canada Council of the Arts as well as The British Columbia Arts Council which grant funding to the country's/province's finest artists.
In addition to performing, composing and teaching, Sharon has subbed in as host of CBC Radio’s “Hot Air” program and has hosted a weekly one hour internet jazz radio show for mediaontap.com.
Outside the jazz world, she has been commissioned by opera singers Monica Whicher and Peter MacGillivray as an arranger. She has also done some arranging and recording for the ABC TV Series , “Men In Trees”and was a piano coach for an actor in the Hollywood movie, “2012”.