A native of Illinois, Chris Reyman comes from a musical family and began performing professionally with his father at age fifteen. He was a self-motivated student of music and developed highly versatile skills primarily through improvising at the piano. He has performed throughout the United States and at festivals in Montreux, Switzerland; Den Haag, in the Netherlands; Toronto, Canada; Bali, Indonesia; Paris, France; Bogota, Colombia; and Chihuahua, Mexico. Recent performance credits include performances with Mark Dresser, Karrin Allyson, Vincent Herring, Bill Watrous, Clay Jenkins, and Mike Clark. His latest project, the Koan Ensemble - a music and dance improvisation ensemble - includes Grammy-nominated saxophonist Mack Goldsbury and bassist Erik Unsworth. Their soon-to-be released CD also features world renowned avant-garde jazz musicians Herb Robertson and Lou Grassi.
Chris Reyman is also a prolific composer, having written works for jazz ensemble, improvising ensemble, chamber ensemble, wind symphony, orchestra, dance choreography, and interactive media. He has completed scores for two award winning short films, Pigeon Impossible and The OceanMaker and music for 57º North, an augmented reality application available on iOS and Android devices. He recently premiered Short Fuse, a concert piece commissioned by the Chicago Gargoyles Brass and Organ Ensemble. His music has been heard at hundreds of venues in 25 different countries.
Chris Reyman joined the University of Texas at El Paso’s Music Department as an Assistant Professor of Commercial Piano in 2014. He received his BM in Commercial Music from Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois and his MM and DMA in Jazz Performance from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Chris Reyman is the co-founder and Assistant Director of the Institute for Improvisation and Social Action (ImprovISA), an organization that empowers communities through improvisation and performance. He has presented his research focusing on improvisation at Music Teachers National Association conferences in Illinois and Texas; Performing the World Conferences in New York City; the 8th World Congress of the International Drama, Theatre and Education Association in Paris, France; Guelph Jazz Festival and Colloquiums in Ontario, Canada; the Texas Dance Improvisation Festival; College Music Society conferences; and in communities throughout the sister cities of El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua in Mexico.