Pianist Mari Kodama has established an international reputation for her musical sensitivity and outstanding virtuosity. In performances throughout Europe, the USA and Japan, she has consistently proven the profound aesthetics of her very personal and unique style.
Recent concert highlights include Beethoven concerto performances with orchestras in Berlin, Montreal, Baden-Baden, Bad Kissingen, Singapore and Osnabrück, and in appearances at the Schleswig-Holstein and Bad Kissingen Festivals. Mozart concerti with the Philharmonia Baroque San Francisco, Detroit Symphony, and Gulbenkian Orchestra in Portugal recently brought glowing reviews.
She also has appeared with the American Symphony Orchestra, the Vienna Symphony, on tour in the Netherlands with the Radio Chamber Orchestra and with Jonathan Nott and the Bamberg Symphony. In Japan, she is a regular guest of major Japanese orchestras, most recently the Tokyo Metropolitan Orchestra and the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo.
Mari Kodama’s wonderfully well-received complete Beethoven Sonata cycle in Los Angeles was followed by acclaimed recital appearances in New York, Paris, London, as well as throughout Japan, Spain and Germany, and much of the rest of the U.S. The Los Angeles Times pronounced her performances of Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 “commanding and electrifying.”
Ms. Kodama is a founding artistic director of the Musical Days at Forest Hill, a festival of chamber music presented by Mari Kodama and Kent Nagano near their home in San Francisco. Overwhelmingly enthusiastic responses prompted the evolution of the initial single event into its current ongoing regular series. In recent seasons she has invited friends and colleagues from the Vienna Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic, and Orchestre de Paris to participate in the Forest Hill festival, as well as prominent soloists from France, Austria and the U.S. Among them are established performers who reflect the generation of young international artists including baritone Dietrich Henschel and composer-pianist Ichiro Nodaïra, composer Unsuk Chin, pianist Momo Kodama, and violinist Viviane Hagner.
Ms. Kodama has played with such orchestras as the Berlin Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, Philharmonia Orchestra, Hallé Orchestra, Montreal Symphony, NDR Symphony, Vienna Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Berkeley Symphony, American Symphony and NHK Orchestra in Japan. She made her New York recital debut at Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall in 1995. Her U.S. festival appearances include Mostly Mozart, Bard Music Festival, the Hollywood Bowl, California’s Midsummer Mozart Festival, Ravinia, and Aspen. In Europe she has appeared at festivals in Lockenhaus, Montpellier, Salzburg, Aix-en-Provence, Aldeburgh, Verbier and Evian, among others.
Born in Osaka, Mari Kodama left Japan as a child and was raised in Germany, Switzerland, France, and England. At the Conservatoire National de Paris she studied piano with Germaine Mounier and chamber music with Geneviève Joy-Dutilleux. Following her conservatory studies, she continued with Tatiana Nikolaeva at the Salzburg Mozarteum and became a private pupil of Alfred Brendel.