Min Rager Biography
Min Rager is one of Canada’s premier female jazz pianists and composers. Born in Seoul, Korea, she moved to Montreal in 1997 to pursue a professional music career. She holds her Master’s degree in Jazz Performance from the Schulich school of music at McGill University graduating with the distinction of “ Outstanding achievement in Jazz Piano”.
At the Montreal International Jazz Festival in 2005 her Quintet was nominated for the “Grand prix de jazz General Motors”. Also that year, Min was the recipient of the “ Best new Artist” award from Montreal’s L’OFF Festival de Jazz.
In 2008, Min received a commission from CBC to compose a jazz suite for 2 pianos. The work, lasting 10 minutes, was submitted to the European Broadcasting Union as a part of “ The Handel Project 2009” to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the composer’s death. Min has also performed on several National Film Board of Canada soundtracks. She is featured on the soundtrack for the internationally acclaimed documentary short film “ Letters from Pyongyang” directed by Jason Lee. Min has released 2 CDs as a leader, “ Bright Road” and “ First Step” on Effendi Records based in Montreal. In 2017, Min independently released her 3rd CD “Train Of Thought”. She has toured extensively in Canada and continues to perform actively with some of the top jazz musicians in North America including Don Thompson, Terry Clarke, Kieran Overs, Donny McCaslin, Joel Frahm, Walt Weiskopf , Kenji Omae, Kevin Dean, Andre White. Min is currently on faculty at the Schulich school of Music of McGill University where she teaches courses and Jazz piano lessons in the jazz department.
2005. Francois-Marcaurelle award " Best new artist" from L'OFF Jazz Festival
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"On the Bright Road, McGill University jazz student Min Rager is more than
able to keep up with her profs. A hard-hitting, sophisticated pianist, she
leads a powerful, straight-ahead quintet that includes faculty members Kevin
Dean (trumpet) and Andre White (drums), as well as bassist Kieran Overs and
alto saxophonist Donny Kennedy. Rager writes sumptuous songs with plenty
of harmonic meat and built-in swing. The veterans tear through them, and
recent McGill grad Kennedy impresses with his assurance and big, tart
sound." —Peter Hum, The Ottawa Citizen
"Pianist Min Rager's debut CD
showcases her strong attack on the keyboard and bright world of view. This
upbeat outlook is a common thread in these eight original compositions,
which she also arranged for this quintet... Trailing and Romanticism are
ballades with Trumpeter Kevin Dean where the pianist's lyricism is deeply
entrenched." —Irwin Block, The Montreal Gazette
Willing to teach
Beginner to advanced
Course lecturer and Jazz piano instructor at the Schulich school of music of McGill
University in Montreal, QC, Canada.