CHIHIRO YAMANAKA TRIO
Chihiro Yamanaka, piano
Yoshi Waki, bass
John Davis, drums
Tickets: $15/$10 students
Chihiro Yamanaka, Universal Classics & Jazz recording artist, is one of the most exciting jazz pianists and composers of her generation, and the leader of the Chihiro Yamanaka Trio.
Chihiro Yamanaka’s current CD, Forever Begins (Universal/Decca), is her U.S. major label debut. Her follow-up CD, Reminiscence (Universal/Decca) is scheduled for release in the U.S. in May, 2012. Reminiscence has already been released in Japan, where it quickly ascended to the #1 spot on the jazz charts and won the “Nissan Presents Jazz Japan Award 2011” for “Album of the Year.”
Chihiro and Universal recently released a DVD, Live In New York, that was videotaped at Iridium Jazz Club in New York City. The DVD gives Chihiro’s fans the opportunity to experience not only the great sound of her band, but also the spectacular visual presentation seen by everyone who has witnessed the fireball of energy and virtuosity on display at a live Chihiro concert appearance.
Based in New York City, Chihiro’s international concert appearances have included Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, the Mary Lou Williams Women In Jazz Festival, JVC Jazz Festival New York, Umbria Jazz Festival, Tokyo Jazz Festival and the Vienna State Opera House. Chihiro has developed a tremendous fan base in Italy, touring there twice a year and performing at Italy’s most prestigious venues.
As acclaimed as Chihiro is in the U.S. and Europe, she is even more popular in Japan, where she’s had an amazing series of successes, with sold-out concert tours and with each of her many CDs reaching the #1 spot on the Japanese jazz charts – an auspicious start to a career that first gained worldwide attention with Chihiro’s 2005 “Best New Artist” award in Swing Journal Magazine.
The Chihiro Yamanaka Trio has featured some of the finest talent in jazz, including bassists Ben Williams, Larry Grenadier, Bob Hurst and Yoshi Waki, and drummers Bernard “Pretty” Purdie, Jeff “Tain” Watts, Jeff Ballard and John Davis. In addition to her work as a bandleader, her in-demand status has led to concert appearances with Herbie Hancock, George Benson, Nancy Wilson, Clark Terry, Gary Burton, George Russell, Terry Lynne Carrington, DIVA and many more.
Chihiro’s 2009 CD, After Hours, won the “Japan Gold Disc Award” as the best-selling jazz disc of the year, and her 2007 CD, “Abyss,” won “Album of The Year” in the Swing Journal Magazine Readers’ Poll. Among her European CD releases is “Lach Doch Mal,” a masterpiece for both her virtuosity on piano and her strikingly original compositions. Highlights of Chihiro’s concerts and recordings also include her refreshingly unique arrangements of many of the most famous songs in the standard jazz repertoire. Jazz Life Magazine called Chihiro “one of the greatest talents in jazz for decades,” and jazz legend George Russell has hailed her as “a very gifted and imaginative musician.”
Chihiro’s impact on the international jazz scene was uncannily foreshadowed by the successes she had while still in college, first at the Royal Academy of Music in England and then at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, where she won Down Beat’s Outstanding Performance Award and was honored by the International Association of Jazz Educators with her victory in the prestigious “Sisters In Jazz” competition in 2000.