2017 marks the 80th birthday of marimba virtuoso, pioneer, and pedagogue, Keiko Abe. As the most influential Japanese performer and most prolific composer and commissioner of works for solo marimba in history, Professor Abe’s work over the past 60 years has been largely responsible for the recognition of marimba as a concert instrument.
In celebration Professor Abe's chief proponent in Japan, Mayumi Hama, will present a program of the most significant works of the Japanese marimba repertoire. From bedrock compositions commissioned by Professor Abe like Akira Miyoshi's Torse III to Abe's own critically renowned works Dream of the Cherry Blossoms and The Wave, Hama will introduce audiences to the sound of the marimba played at the highest possible level.
Virtuoso marimbist Mayumi Hama, began studying with Professor Keiko Abe at age 6. Since 1996, Mayumi has been Professor Abe’s principal duo partner, traveling with her around the world to present definitive interpretations of existing repertoire as well as to premiere new works for two marimbas. Without question, Mayumi is the world’s leading proponent of Professor Abe’s powerful sound and commanding knowledge of her repertoire.