北澤 恵美子の画像 EMIKO KITAZAWA first found marimba at the age of seven and was immediately fascinated with the instrument. She learned the technique rigorously and soon began to appear regularly on "Let's Sing and Listen," a nationwide public TV program in Japan.
Later she enrolled in Toho Gakuen School of Music and continued to study the artful world of marimba under the auspices of Ms. Keiko Abe, an internationally acclaimed player of the instrument.
After graduation, Emiko went on to a postgraduate course at the same school to further study music. The mentors there were late Akira Ishikawa, a distinguished African percussionist, and late Hamza el Din, a prominent Arabian instrumentalist who taught her the Nubian percussion. She also studied the theory of popular music under Toyo Nakamura, and practiced marimba with late Hiroyuki Iwaki and Ms. Mutsuko Taneya.
After that, she turned her eye to the publishing world and made a career as the publisher of Kitazawa Publishing Co.Ltd. where she produced several books on music. While working hard, she never abandoned playing marimba. She formed "Ensemble Sakura," an unique ensemble of marimba, piano and other instruments. Ensemble Sakura has been very active in introducing the works of new composers from both East and West, including several works specially commissioned for the ensemble.


恩師 故古江綾子先生と共に(NHKスタジオにて)
恩師 故古江綾子先生と共に (NHKスタジオにて)

In 1999, Emiko made her European debut in a concert at London's Takemitsu Society, sponsored by the Daiwa Foundation. In 2000 she gave a solo marimba recital at the Tokyo Opera City in Japan. She also participated in the U.K.-Japan Festival 2001 at the Royal Festival Hall (Purcell Room) in London, that has received a great critical acclaim in the U.K.

恩師 安倍佳子先生を囲んで打楽器科一同
恩師 安倍圭子先生を囲んで (桐朋音大時代)

Other than routine appearances in Japan, she also performed in Frankfurt (in 2004 and 2005) and South Korea (Korea & Japan Concert for Friends in 2006).
In 2009, Emiko played with her mentor, Ms. Keiko Abe, at Abe's special marimba concert.
In June 2010, Emiko self-produced a live marimba performance featuring Africa, the birthplace of the instrument.
Next year, 2011, will mark the tenth anniversary of her restarting music career with her favorite instrument. A special recital at the Recital Hall of Tokyo Opera City is scheduled in March.
In creating musical sounds that melodiously and rhythmically express the magical power of marimba, Emiko is rigorously and passionately joining hands with many world musicians, in pursuit of her own marimba world.