Maki Namekawa

Portrait of Maki Namekawa
Year of birth, place
Tokio, Japan
Role at the ZKM
Guest Artist
At the ZKM
  • 2011
  • 2024

Maki Namekawa completed her concert exam with distinction at the Karlsruhe University of Music (HfM Karlsruhe) with Prof. Werner Genuit and Prof. Kaya Han and then continued her studies at the Cologne University of Music and Dance (HfMT Köln) with Pierre-Laurent Aimard. She is one of the most leading concert pianists of our time, performing regularly on international stages such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center New York, Musikverein Vienna, Philharmonie de Paris, Barbican Centre London, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Salzburg Festival, Holland Festival, Piano-Festival Ruhr, and the Ars Electronica Festival in Linz, Austria.

In 2013, she performed for the first time ever the complete cycle of Philip Glass's 20 Piano Etudes with the composer’s participation at the Perth Festival in Australia (Perth International Arts Festival). Since then, she has successfully performed the Glass Etudes in 16 European countries, in Mexico, Brazil, Japan and the USA. 2014 saw the release of the critically acclaimed CD »Complete Piano Etudes«. This was followed in September 2018 by the world premiere of the piano version of Philip Glass' »Mishima« at the Ars Electronica Festival, which Namekawa recorded and for which she received the Pasticcio Prize from ORF, as well as her CD »Isang Yun: Sunrise Falling« (2019).

In July 2019, she gave the world premiere of Philip Glass' »Piano Sonata« as part of the Piano-Festival Ruhr. »Piano Sonata« had been commissioned by the Piano-Festival Ruhr, the Philharmonie de Paris and the Ars Electronica Festival. The American premiere of this work followed in 2019 in New York, the French premiere in 2022 at the Philharmonie de Paris. The BBC Music Magazine gave Namekawa's recording of the »Piano Sonata« the highest recommendation, also for her previous cycle of the Glass 20 Piano Etudes. In July 2023, she performed the world premiere of Philip Glass' »M - Concerto for Piano and Orchestra« at the Piano-Festival Ruhr’s closing concert, which was received with overwhelming public and critical acclaim.

In 2022, she performed Keith Jarrett's solo piano work »Ritual« at the Ars Electronica Festival in collaboration with realtime visual artist Cori O'Lan. In 2023, she performed Keith Jarrett's »The Köln Concert« at the Philharmonie de Paris, at the Ars Electronica Festival and the Beethovenfest Bonn.