Migiwa “Miggy” Miyajima is a jazz composer and leader of the passionately swinging 17-piece Miggy Augmented Orchestra, which released its ArtistShare debut Colorful in 2018. With this group she brings her life experience to bear on music that evokes natural beauty and a deep appreciation of our shared humanity.
She has been named 2020 New York City’s Women’s Fund For Media, Music and Theatre recipient and one of 60 inaugural recipients of the Jerome Foundation’s 2019 Jerome Hill Artist Fellowships as well as a 2015 finalist for the BMI Charlie Parker Jazz Composition Prize.
She has also served as associate producer and conductor of Slide Hampton’s big band, and was the Japanese representative of the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, for which she associate-produced the Grammy-nominated albums Forever Lasting: Live in Tokyo and Over Time: Music of Bob Brookmeyer.
She is the first Japanese big band leader to headline Birdland (in 2017) since the great Toshiko Akiyoshi in 2003. Formerly editor-in-chief of a travel magazine in Japan, the self-taught Miyajima devoted herself to music full-time in 2004, at age 30. She led her own Japanese big band, miggy+, until 2010, and relocated to New York in 2012 where she met such life-changing mentors as Jim McNeely and Mike Holober.