Rahn Coleman

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Rahn Coleman
Rahn promo.jpg
Rahn Coleman
Background information
Birth name Ronald Edward Coleman
Born (1949-04-05) April 5, 1949 (age 69)
San Francisco, California, United States
Origin Oakland, California, United States
Genres R&B, classical, musical theater, jazz
Occupation(s) Record producer, composer, arranger, pianist, musical director, performance coach, orchestrator
Instruments Piano, keyboards, vocals, pipe organ, clarinet, oboe, violin, English horn
Years active 1971-present
Labels Verve, RCA, Capitol, 20th Century, Warner Bros., Polydor, Atlantic, Expansion, Cotillion, Curtom, ABC, Fantasy
Associated acts Barry White, Aretha Franklin, Freda Payne, The Temptations, Nichelle Nichols, Tina Turner, Ray Charles, Sarah Vaughan
Website rahncoleman.com

Ronald Edward "Rahn" Coleman (born April 5, 1949) is an American record producer, musical director, arranger, orchestrator, composer, vocal coach, and pianist. Coleman was born in San Francisco, California, and grew up in nearby Oakland, where he attended public school and began studying piano at age 4. He has also played oboe, clarinet, violin, English horn and pipe organ.

Coleman continued his musical training at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee and sang in the Fisk Jubilee Singers. In 1969 he studied harmony and music theory with Nadia Boulanger at The American Conservatory in Fontainebleau, France.[1]


Coleman has served as musical director, arranger, vocal coach and pianist for many notable singers, including: Aretha Franklin, Freda Payne, Nichelle Nichols, Michael Feinstein, Gladys Knight, Barry White, The Ojays, The Temptations, Tina Turner, Ray Charles, Ben Vereen, Marilyn McCoo, Billy Davis Jr., and Sarah Vaughan.[1] He conducted the NBC Studio Orchestra, the Philadelphia Philharmonic, the 1993 Clinton Presidential Inaugural Orchestra and was featured on Dick Clark's American Bandstand 20th Anniversary Special. Coleman has toured nationally and internationally with Lou Rawls, Gladys Knight, Patti LaBelle, Joe Cocker, Marlena Shaw, Marvin Gaye, Tom Jones, Seals and Crofts, and Sammy Davis Jr.

In the realm of musical theater he has served as musical supervisor, musical director, arranger, orchestrator, and pianist for productions of Sammy, Ain't Misbehavin, The Wiz, Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill, the Broadway production of Baby It's You, and the West Coast premiere of Breath and Imagination.[2] He began collaborating with Sheldon Epps in 1991 as Music Director for Blues in the Night at the Los Angeles Theatre Center. Subsequent collaborations with Epps include: Ray Charles Live! A New Musical, Play On, and Purlie.

His theater credits include work at: The Broadhurst Theatre (New York); The Colony Theater Company (Burbank); International City Theatre (Long Beach); The Old Globe Theatre (San Diego); Pasadena Playhouse; Los Angeles Theatre Center; Post Street Theater (San Francisco); The Syracuse Stage; Goodman Theater (Chicago); Phoenix Theater; National Black Theater Festival (Winston-Salem, NC); Indiana Repertory Theater; Seattle Repertory Theater; Santa Barbara Civic Light Opera; and the Ojai Playwrights Conference.


  • 1991/92: recipient, The ariZoni Theater Award for Musical Direction (Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill, Phoenix Theater)[3]
  • 1999: recipient, The Garland Award for Best Musical Director (Play On!, Pasadena Playhouse)
  • 2008: recipient, NAACP Theatre Award for Best Music Director (Ray Charles Live! A New Musical, Pasadena Playhouse)[4]
  • 2013: nominee, NAACP Theatre Award for Best Music Director (Ain't Misbehavin, International City Theatre)[5]

Partial discography[edit]

With Barry White[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Ronald (Rahn) Coleman". Goodman Theatre. 2011-12-12. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
  2. ^ [1][dead link]
  3. ^ "Contracted Theater Awards" (PDF). Arizoniawards.com. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
  4. ^ "NAACP Theatre Award Winners Announced". Broadwayworld.com. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
  5. ^ "23rd Annual NAACP Theatre Awards Announces Nominations". Blacknews.com. 2013-10-02. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
  6. ^ "Rahn Coleman Discography at Discogs". Discogs.com. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
  7. ^ Rahn Coleman. "Rahn Coleman | Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
  8. ^ "Barry White Bio | Barry White Career". MTV. 2003-07-04. Retrieved 2013-11-12.

External links[edit]