Program Books/Allison Miller

Allison Miller


Allison Miller, a drummer, composer and teacher, has been described as a “modern jazz icon in the making”; has been named one of the Top 20 Jazz Drum­mers in Downbeat; and her composition “Otis Was a Polar Bear” is on NPR’s list of the 200 Greatest Songs by 21st-Century Women. Miller served as a Monterey Jazz Festival 2019 artist-in-residence and is the first recipient of the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation’s Commissioning Grant.

Miller’s band Boom Tic Boom, featuring pianist Myra Melford, violinist Jenny Scheinman, clarinetist Ben Goldberg, cornetist Kirk Knuffke, and bassist Todd Sickafoose is currently celebrating its 10th anniversary with the release of its album, Glitter Wolf. Previous releases by the band include 5am Stroll, Boom Tic Boom, Live at Willisau, No Morphine No Lilies, and Otis was a Polar Bear.

Miller co-directs Parlour Game with Jenny Scheinman and Science Fair with Carmen Staaf. She is the musical director for Camille A. Brown’s Ink, Michelle Dorrance, and the American Ballet Theater’s Dream Within A Dream, Speak with Rachna Nivas and Michelle Dorrance, and And Still You Must Swing with Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards.

As a side-musician, Miller has collaborated with Ani DiFranco, Sara Bareilles, Natalie Merchant, Brandi Carlile, and Toshi Reagon, as well as Dr. Lonnie Smith, Patricia Barber, Marty Ehrlich, Myra Melford, Steven Bernstein, and Ben Allison.

Miller is a three-time Jazz Ambassador for the US State Department and has been appointed Arts Envoy to Thailand for her work with Jazz Education Abroad. She is on Yamaha’s Top 30 Clinicians list and teaches at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York City and Stanford Jazz Workshop, and is the artistic director of Jazz Camp West. Her instructional videos are produced and published by Reverb. In 2008, Miller founded the Walter Salb Memorial Musical Scholarship Foundation in honor of her late teacher and mentor.