Miyama McQueen-Tokita


Miyama McQueen-Tokita


Miyama McQueen-Tokita is a koto and bass koto player and improviser. Fusing Japanese traditions with new ideas that are relevant to the present day, she performs contemporary works, improvisation and original music. She is known as a musician who is free and expressive, with a solid traditional foundation, which has led to collaborations with high-profile artists within Japan and internationally. Miyama has been invited to perform as a soloist in festivals such as the Tokyo Jazz Festival, Melbourne International Arts Festival and Mapping Melbourne. Ensembles she has collaborated with include the Vancouver Intercultural Orchestra, Thin Edge New Music Collective (Toronto), Australian Art Orchestra and Japan Philharmonic Orchestra. Miyama also puts energy into seeking composers from various backgrounds to create music for the koto in styles that have not yet been explored. This has led to the completion of her first solo album “SONOBE”, featuring new and existing works for the koto by composers from all around the world, released in 2020. In 2019 she spent six months in NYC as a 2018 grantee of the Asian Cultural Council New York Fellowship, where she immersed herself deeply in the experimental, free improvised and new music scenes. Since returning from her fellowship, she has focused on improvisation, composition and ensemble leading. Her most recent projects include a series of solo concerts, the Miyama McQueen-Tokita Trio, and the Low Light Art Ensemble, an ongoing large ensemble project led by Miyama, focusing on bringing new and experimental music into new spaces, funded by Arts Council Tokyo. Miyama has been taught by Satsuki Odamura and Kazue Sawai, and has a Masters in music from Tokyo University of the Arts.