Rena Sharon is a pianist who is one of Canada’s leading collaborative performing artists and piano chamber musicians. She also stands out as one who is deeply interested in knowing what science can offer to an understanding of creative processes and her personal commitment to the relevance of music to the widest range of human conditions and endeavours. She is collaborating with lawyers to explore the keys found in music making that open doors to better interactions between people dealing with differences that require mediation and conciliation. Dr. Sharon is also working with neuroscientists on the theory that what is being learned in the study of the brain gains much from how the process of music making can be tracked to reveal unusual combinations of neural pathways.
Recently she founded and now directs the Vancouver International Song Institute, a multidisciplinary entity with an annual festival committed to exploring all aspects of texts and musics of the song literature, and how the study and performance of song literature serves the human need to connect one to another.
Dr. Sharon received her undergraduate degree in Music from the Eastman School of Music and her Master of Music in Piano Performance at Indiana University. She taught at the Department of Music, Oklahoma State University, and at the Victoria Conservatory of Music, where she was Head of Collaborative Music before taking up her UBC appointment in 1982. In 2007, she led a Wall Exploratory Workshop, Art Song Anima.