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Mari Kimura

New York, NY         

Mari Kimura is at the forefront of violinists who are extending the technical and expressive capabilities of the instrument. As a performer, composer, and researcher, she has opened up new sonic worlds for the violin. Notably, she has mastered the production of pitches that sound up to an octave below the violin’s lowest string without retuning. This technique, which she calls Subharmonics, has earned Mari considerable renown in the concert music world and beyond. She is also a pioneer in the field of interactive computer music. At the same time, she has earned international acclaim as a soloist and recitalist in both standard and contemporary repertoire.


As a composer, Mari’s commissions include the International Computer Music Association, Harvestworks, Music from Japan and others, supported by grants including New York Foundation for the Arts, Arts International, Meet The Composer, Japan Foundation, Argosy Foundation, and New York State Council on the Arts. In 2010 Mari won the Guggenheim Fellowship in Composition, and invited as Composer-in- Residence at IRCAM in Paris. In May 2011, Mari was presented in a solo recital at the Bohemian National Hall in NYC by the Vilcek Foundation, in recognition of her ground- breaking work as a foreign-born artist; subsequently she was named one of 2011’s 45 individuals as “Immigrants: Pride of America” by the Carnegie Corporation, published in the New York Times. Mari’s latest CD, The World Below G and Beyond, is devoted entirely to her own compositions and focuses on works using Subharmonics and interactive computer music. In October 2011, Mari presented her “I-Quadrifoglo”, her first string quartet with interactive computer at New York’s Symphony Space, commissioned by the Cassatt String Quartet through 2010 Fromm Foundation Commission Award from Harvard. Mari’s work has been featured in major publications including the New York Times written by Matthew Gurewitsch, and in Scientific American written by Larry Greenemeier.


As a violinist, Mari has premiered many notable works, including John Adams’s Violin Concerto (Japanese premiere), Luciano Berio’s Sequenza VIII (US premiere), Tania Léon’s Axon for violin and computer (world premiere), and Salvatore Sciarrino’s 6 Capricci (US premiere), among others. In 2007, Mari introduced Jean-Claude Risset’s violin concerto, Schemes, at Suntory Hall with the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra. The cadenza she wrote for the concerto, incorporating advanced Subharmonics, was subsequently published in Strings. In November 2010, Mari appeared as a soloist with the Hamburg Symphony performing John Adams’ Dharma at the Big Sur, under the direction of Jonathan Stockhammer, conductor.


In 2013, Mari inaugurated a new summer program as the Director of “Future Music Lab” at the Atlantic Music Festival in collaboration with IRCAM. The program focuses on high-level performers using the latest technology. Since 1998, Mari has been teaching a graduate course in Interactive Computer Music Performance at Juilliard.

Eigenspace (2011) for Augmented Violin and interactive graphics

Interactive Graphics by Tomoyuki Kato: Visual Artist, Movie Director, Yoshito Onishi: Image Programing, Chisako Hasegawa: Visual Producer. Live footage from the premiere at Roulette in Brooklyn, Oct. 13, 2011. Harvestworks Media Arts Center commission. Special Thanks to Real Time Musical Interaction Team at IRCAM.
Using Augmented Violin system developed at IRCAM with interactive music solfware MaxMSP, the motion sensor embedded in my glove on the right hand, analyzes and interacts with music and graphics.

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VIjay Iyer/Steve Lehman/Mari Kimura ImproTech 2012

From ImproTech Paris/New York 2012 Festival – Improvisation and Technology. Vijay Iyer, piano; Steve Lehman, sax; Mari Kimura, violin, with OMAX, artificial intelligence improvisation system developed at IRCAM in Paris, France, and Manifold Interactive Rhythm Generator developed by Steven Lehman at IRCAM and Columbia University, New York, NY. Recorded live at Roulette, Brooklyn, NY, May 16th, 2012.

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GuitarBotana for violin and GuitarBot (2004)

GuitarBotana for violin and Guitarbot with interactive computer (2004). Commissioned by Harvestworks Media Arts Center with grant from New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA). GuitarBotana was created in collaboration with LEMUR (League of Electronic Music Urban Robots). This work is included in my solo album, Polytopia (Bridge Records).

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