Paul Read

2015 Muriel Sherrin Award for International Achievement in Music Finalist

Pianist/composer, Paul Read has served as Director of Jazz Studies at the University of Toronto and Humber College. He has recorded 8 CDs, including Arc-en-ciel (Addo Records). He was the founder of NMC Jazz Camp and served on the Executive Board of the International Association for Jazz Education. 

Photo of Paul Read by Denise Grant Photography


Why are the arts important?

Art feeds the soul. In the process of creating or experiencing art in any form, our lives are enriched and nourished.


Where do you live in the city?

Yonge and Eglinton


What is your favourite Toronto neighbourhood?

Davisville Village


Where can we find you when you are not working?

On a golf course or watching a Blue Jays game.


What was your reaction after learning that you are a finalist for the Muriel Sherrin Award for International Achievement in Music?

I was speechless. I was thrilled to be nominated in the first place, and very surprised and excited to hear I had been named a finalist.


Do you have a mentor?

Actually, I have many, but the late Gordon Delamont was a very important force in my formative years when I began composing and arranging. My studies with him also had a huge impact on my jazz piano playing.


Who do you admire?

The list is long, but perhaps the person I most admire is Phil Nimmons. He has been a great inspiration and close friend. His optimism, work ethic and accomplishments are widely revered and he is one of the most patriotic Canadians I know.


What do you enjoy most about what you do?

The most fun is performance. After writing a piece, hearing the music played by great musicians is a source of great joy and pride.


Describe your style of work.

My music compositions tend to be mainstream with modernist overtones.


What keeps you going?

The encouragement and support of my family and friends, particularly my wife, Trish Colter.


How do you feel you contribute to the city?

Toronto has a strong and vibrant arts community. After forty plus years of teaching music, I feel proud to see the great number of former students giving great, inspiring performances throughout the city. Also, I played a role in bringing two major jazz conferences to Toronto (2003 and 2008) in my role as Canada’s Representative on the executive board of the International Association of Jazz Education (IAJE). I have also performed multiple times at the Toronto Jazz Festival, which, in itself, is a major arts event in Toronto each year.