Over a life-long career in music, Michele Weir has touched the lives of students around the globe and significantly influenced the growth and development of jazz education. Through her many creative vocal group and instrumental arrangements, and her talents as a pianist and singer, Weir is widely distinguished for her versatile skill set and ability to inspire. As one student put it, “Thank you again for being such an amazing mentor. You are truly the person I strive to be.”
Weir’s arrangements are performed by renowned vocal groups including The Manhattan Transfer, New York Voices, The Swingle Singers, M-Pact, Beachfront Property, Chanticleer, Voice Trek, and her orchestral works played by various symphonies including the Boston Pops. Her educational arrangements are distributed by leading publishers including Hal Leonard, Alfred Publishing, Shawnee Press, SMP Jazz as well as her own online company, MichMusic. As vocal producer for the Manhattan Transfer’s 2009 CD release, The Chick Corea Songbook, Michele worked closely with the Transfer and contributed two arrangements to the project. Other arrangements or compositions have been featured on the Shari Lewis TV show, Disney’s 101 Dalmations Sing-along CD, and the Holland America Cruise line.
Currently on faculty at University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Weir taught previously at USC, CSU Long Beach, and the Phil Mattson School. As a highly sought-after teacher and clinician, Michele has been invited to teach in twenty-three countries to date and has delivered presentations for some of the world’s most prestigious music conferences including the World Choral Symposium, the IAJE and JEN Conferences, and the ACDA National Conference. Her educational book/CD sets, Vocal Improvisation (Advance Music), Jazz Singer’s Handbook (Alfred Publishing), and Jazz Piano Handbook (Alfred Publishing) are available internationally.
Weir’s past tours as pianist and/or singer range from Ogalla, Nebraska to Carnegie Hall, South Korea, Atlantic City with Bobby Vinton, and more. A former vocal member of the Grammy Nominated PM Singers (under the direction of Phil Mattson) Weir also contributed arrangements to the group’s concert repertoire and recordings. Her duo CD as a vocalist with jazz guitarist Bruce Forman is titled, The Sound of Music. In her role as Music Supervisor for the DreamWorks film, Prince of Egypt, Michele journeyed through Europe and Asia to oversee the music production for the film’s foreign language dubs.
M.M., University of Southern California; B.A., Music Education, Central Washington University