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Emily Bear

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Title: Emily Bear  
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Subject: Steinway D-274, August 30
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Emily Bear

Emily Bear
Birth name Emily Bear
Born (2001-08-30) August 30, 2001
Origin Illinois, USA
Genres Classical, jazz, Third Stream
Occupation(s) Pianist, composer
Instruments Piano
Years active 2007–present
Associated acts Quincy Jones, Nikki Yanofsky

Emily Bear (born August 30, 2001) is an American composer and pianist, who has achieved wide notice at an early age.[1] After beginning to compose and play piano as a small child, Bear has played with orchestras in the U.S., Europe and Asia, at such venues as Carnegie Hall and the Hollywood Bowl. She released her first studio album in 2013, produced by her mentor, Quincy Jones.

Life and career

Bear was born and raised in Rockford, Illinois, the youngest of three children of Brian, an orthopedic surgeon, and Andrea Bear, and is home schooled.[2] Bear is the great-granddaughter of late Judge Max H. Reicher of New Britain, Connecticut.[3]

When Bear was two years old, her grandmother, Merle Langs Greenberg, recognized her talent at the piano.[4] Bear began to study with Emilio del Rosario at the Music Institute of Chicago. Within four years, she was enrolled at the Winnetka campus to study classical music. Bear started to compose music at the age of three. By the age of eight, she had composed more than 350 pieces.[5] For her piece Northern Lights, she won the ASCAP Foundation Morton Gould Young Composer Award for composers under 18 years of age.[6] She also won the Rockford Area Music Industry Award (RAMI).[7] Bear debuted at the Ravinia Festival at age 5.[8]

Bear has made six appearances on [6] and performed Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 23 with the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra.

Bear made her debut at Carnegie Hall in 2010 at age 9.[8] In 2011, she appeared at the Hollywood Bowl before more than 11,000 people, where she played a medley of her own arrangement, “The Bumble Boogie” and performed “Miss Celie’s Blues” (from the score of The Color Purple) with singers Gloria Estefan, Patti Austin, Siedah Garrett and Nikki Yanofsky. That summer, Quincy Jones presented Bear at the 45th Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland[2] and the Festival Castell in Peralada, Spain where she performed solo as well as with Esperanza Spalding.[8] Bear's mentor Quincy Jones stated: "I am at once astounded and inspired by the enormous talent that Emily embodies. ... She is the complete 360-degree package, and there are no limits to the musical heights that she can reach."[8]

Since age six, Bear has studied classical piano with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s principal keyboardist Mary Sauer and also studies with Veda Kaplinsky, head of the piano department at Juilliard. She studies jazz improvisation with Alan Swain and composing with Ron Sadoff, head of New York University Film Scoring Department. Bear continues to compose prolifically and particularly enjoys composing for film.[8]

Released in May 2013, Diversity, a jazz album on the Concord Records label, produced by Quincy Jones, was recorded at Westlake Recording Studios in Los Angeles. Bear composed all of the music on the album.[2] The album peaked at #3 on Billboard's Traditional Jazz Albums chart.[11]

Dates and performances

  • October 3, 2007 - The Ellen DeGeneres Show
  • November 23, 2007 - The Ellen DeGeneres Show
  • January 8, 2008 - Radio feature: Note By Note: The Making of Steinway L1037
  • March 24, 2008 - White House
  • March 28, 2008 - ASCAP 2008 Morton Gould Young Composer Award
  • April 13, 2008 - 2008 Music Institute of Chicago Gala on May 7, 2008
  • April 13, 2008 - RAMI Outstanding Achievement Award
  • April 15, 2008 - New CD "The Love in Us" released, Web Shop.
  • August 3, 2008 - The Ellen DeGeneres Favorite Moments Montage
  • August 3, 2008 - WFMT's Introductions Radio Program on September 20, 2008
  • September 7, 2008 - Ravinia Festival in Chicago, IL
  • October 3, 2008 - Grand Opening of Chicago's American Girl Place
  • October 26, 2008 - Master Class with Lang Lang
  • November 13, 2008 - New CD "Once Upon A Wish" released, Web Shop.
  • November 17, 2008 - The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Video
  • February 15, 2009 - Emily (piano) and her sister Lauren (harp) perform at Music In The Loft
  • March 28, 2009 - Rockford Symphony Orchestra
  • April 11, 2009 - Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra
  • April 17, 2009 - Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Chicago 25th Anniversary Season Benefit Performance
  • April 26, 2009 - Luxury Living Expo
  • April 28, 2009 - The Ellen DeGeneres Show
  • May 2, 2009 - 5th Annual Big Mac Under Glass Gala
  • May 9, 2009 - Noche de Niños Gala
  • January 5, 2010 - The Ellen DeGeneres Show
  • November 9, 2010 - Dancing with the Stars
  • November 22, 2010 - New CD "Hope" is released
  • December 2, 2010 - Carnegie Hall Debut
  • January 18, 2011 - A concert in Geneva Switzerland
  • February 23, 2011 - Featured on ABC Nightline
  • March 1, 2011 - Featured on German TV on SAT1 channel
  • May 4, 2011 - 3rd Annual PTTOW
  • May 15, 2011 - Concert in New Music School in Chicago
  • June 21, 2011 - Charity Ball and Awards Gala
  • July 13, 2011 - 45th Annual Montreux Jazz Festival
  • July 20, 2011 - Festival Castell de Peralada in Spain
  • September 7, 2011 - Quincy Jones and the Global Gumbo All Stars at the Hollywood Bowl
  • December 2, 2011 - The American Christmas Carol in New York
  • December 8, 2011 - UNICEF Ball
  • February, 2012 - Art on Ice. Zurich, Switzerland
  • April, 2012 - UNICEF Message of Hope Gala in Chicago
  • May, 2012 - Life Ball AIDS. Vienna, Austria.
  • June 26, 2012 - Spotify Event
  • September 15, 2012 - Hemmens Cultural Center
  • September 21, 2012 - Global Citizen Awards Dinner
  • October 17, 2012 - Inner City Arts Gala
  • December 24, 2012 - Santa Fe Concert Association
  • March 1, 2013 - Katie Couric Show
  • March 9, 2013 - Rockford Symphony Orchestra
  • April 13, 2013 - Power of Love Gala Fundraiser, Quincy Jones 80th Birthday in Las Vegas
  • May 8, 2013 - Diversity Release Concert in Los Angeles
  • May 10, 2013 - Diversity Release Concert in Chicago
  • May 11, 2013 - Diversity Release Concert in Rockford
  • May 15, 2013 - Diversity Release Concert in New York City
  • August 9, 2014 - Strings Music Festival, Steamboat Springs, Colorado

Source: Emily Bear's Official homepage[12]


  • Five Years Wise (2007)
  • The Love In Us (2008)
  • Once Upon A Wish (2008)
  • Always True (2009)
  • Hope (2010)
  • Diversity (2013)


  1. ^ Braun, Georgette (2008-11-26). "Rockford piano prodigy to play role in Thanksgiving parade". Rockford Register Star (GateHouse Media, Inc). Archived from the original on 2008-12-22. Retrieved 2008-12-23. 
  2. ^ a b c Levine, Doug. "Musical Prodigy Emily Bear Wows Audiences Worldwide", Voice of America, May 31, 2013
  3. ^ "Max H. Reicher". Weinstein Mortuary. 
  4. ^ "The Next Mozart?". WGN News. May 15, 2008. 
  5. ^ "Buy Emily Bear's Songs!".  
  6. ^ a b Braun, Georgette (2008-12-04). "Rockford pianist to perform at awards show". Rockford Register Star (GateHouse Media, Inc). Archived from the original on 2008-12-22. Retrieved 2008-12-23. 
  7. ^ Braun, Georgette (2007-06-28). "Pianist, 6, takes top RAMI Award".  
  8. ^ a b c d e Biography,, accessed September 29, 2013
  9. ^ "Rockford piano prodigy, 6, featured today on Ellen". Rockford Register Star (GateHouse Media, Inc). 2008-04-25. Archived from the original on 2008-12-22. Retrieved 2008-12-23. 
  10. ^ "Emily Bear Official Site - News". Emily Bear Official Homepate. Retrieved 2009-05-18. 
  11. ^ Traditional Jazz Albums, Billboard, June 1, 2013
  12. ^ "Event page on Official Site". Retrieved 2009-05-18. 

External links

  • Official site
  • Emily Bear: Girl with a Gift WGN feature
  • Diversity at
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