Chikage Imai was born in Nagoya (Japan) and studied with Akihiko Matsui at Aichi Prefectural University of Fine Arts and Music. She met and was inspired by Joji Yuasa – a notable Japanese composer – at Composium 2002 and he became familiar with her music at the Akiyoshidai summer seminar that same year, since which he has been her mentor. Moving to Europe in 2003, Imai continued to study composition with Wim Henderickx and Fabio Nieder at Conservatorium van Amsterdam where she received her bachelor and master’s diplomas, supported by Rohm Music foundation.

 Imai’s musical activity has been broadened internationally through her first successful chamber ensemble piece Vectorial Projection I – bouncing ball (2006). The piece was premiered by Nieuw Ensemble under Lucas Vis and performed again in Gaudeamus muzikweek, the work was also awarded an honorable mention by the 28th Irino Prize for Chamber Music. In 2008 Vectorial Projection IV – fireworks was commissioned by Festival d’Automne á Paris and premiered by Irvine Arditti and Nieuw Ensemble under Yoichi Sugiyama. Verbarizing (2009) was composed for Ayako Okubo’s concert by Hanatsu mirior.Simulgenesis (2009) was written for the 4th International Composition Seminar of the International Ensemble Modern Academy and this piece led Westdeutschen Rundfunks to commission Imai to write a piece for Ensemble Modern. The piece, Morphing - state of matter (2011) was premiered by the ensemble under Johannes Kalitzke at Wittener Tage für neue Kammermusik and broadcasted on WDR3 program. In 2012 towards G was commissioned byMusic from Japan and the piece was premiered in New York, U.S.A. H into H written for horn and harpsichord received the an honorable mention by Prix Annalie de Man Prize. Arcs (2013) was written for a notable recorder player, Toshiya Suzuki’s recital. It was the first time that Imai

Photo by Morito Okada

composed for a Japanese traditional instrument, Shô and Koto in this piece. Furthermore she was invited for contemporary music workshops such as De Componist(NL), Ostrava Days (CZ), Akiyoshidai summer seminar(JP) and more.

In 2013 Imai founded an organization “Seainx project” to introduce contemporary music in Nagoya, Japan. Since then she has been organizing lecture & concert “Crossboundary” featured only one instrument and invited Ernest Rombout, Nanae Yoshimura and so on. For this concert series she write small pieces for each instrument and they became her miniature composition series.

She is involved in projects working on with other artists and art forms, including visual art and stage design, among others. One of her biggest cross media art work Synecdochism I <impulse> (2008), premiered by Duo Miako Klein & Sava Stoiano in Suite Muziekweek, is concerned an idea “breathing” in a manner of Japanese traditional cultures to think about “perception”. This experiment brought out Synecdochism II <continuity> (2016) which is based on the idea of Noh theatre and was premiered in Aichi triennale 2016. With this work her portrait concert succeeded in Strasbourg by HANATSU miroir - put her on the stage to go for more interdisciplinary experiment. Lately she has been engaged into the project “ARToC10” by the Nagoya Urban Institute to arise the regeneration of the Nakagawa canal area with music and her composition. This year (2019) she gives 3 premieres of her new music for ARToC10 and 1 for Aichi triennale 2019.

Imai’s music is published Muzikproduktion Dabringhaus und Grimm and Ensemble Modern Media. Through being an honorary research associate at Royal Holloway, University of London, she is currently an artistic director of Seainx project.

Curriculum Vitae

Born in Nagoya, Japan, in 1979



Georges Aperghis, Clemens Gadenstätter and Peter Ablinger’s composition courses and lectures at impuls 2013 in Graz, Austria


Rebecca Saunders, Richard Ayres, Bernhard Lang, and Christian Wolff’s composition courses and workshops at Ostrava Days in Ostrava, Czech

Aquired Master diploma at Conservatorium van Amsterdam


A few composition lessons from Beat Furrer in Frankfurt, Germany


Aquired Bachelor diploma at Conservatorium van Amsterdam


Mentored by Joji Yuasa (-current)

Joji Yuasa’s composition courses and workshops at Akiyoshidai summer seminar of contemporary music (-2005, 2008)

Enrolled to the below mentioned university as a researcher for a year

Aquired the Bachelor degree at Aichi Prefectural University of Fine Arts and Music



Seainx project, Representative & Artistic director


HAL College of Technology ad Design, Lector (- 2013)


Honorary Research Associate in composition at Royal Holloway, University of London, Honorary Research Associate



Winning of “Call for Score” by Diaphonia Edizioni, in collaboration with XelmYa+ trio


Honorable mention of the Prix Annelie de Man Prize


Honorable mention of the 28th Irino Prize for Chamber music


The prize of the Aichi Prefectural Student Competition of Composition



ARToC10 (for lecture & concert series “Crossboundary XI ~ make a ring of community, shrine and canal”)*


ARToC10 (for lecture & concert series “Crossboundary VII, VIII, IX, X ~ make a ring of community, shrine and canal”)*

Aichi prefectural foundation for cultural activities (for lecture & concert series “Crossboundary VII, VIII, IX, X ~ make a ring of community, shrine and canal”)*

Yellow angel (for Seainx 2019 “Sound by Air Reed Instruments” (Aichi triennial 2019), lecture & concert series “Crossboundary VII, VIII, IX, X ~ make a ring of community, shrine and canal”)*

* organized project by Seainx project


ARToC10 (for Synecdochism II <continuity>'s performances)

Yellow angel (for Synecdochism II <continuity>'s performances)

Sarah foundation (for shooting Noh masks of Toyohashi No Society to perform Synecdochism II <continuity>)


Aichi bank education & arts foundation (for Seainx 2017 the 1st Nagoya international contemporary music academy)


Nomura foundation (for Synecdochism II <continuity>'s performances in France and residence in Born Digital, Amsterdam, The Netherlands)

Yellow angel (for Synecdochism II <continuity>'s performances in France and residence in Born Digital, Amsterdam, The Netherlands)


The Asahi Shimbun Foundation (for research in Europe)


Wet werk en inkomen kunstenaars (the Artist’s Income Support), Amsterdam, The Netherlands


Rohm Music Foundation (for commission fee of Festival d’Automne)


Rohm Music Foundation, Kyoto, Japan (-2009) (for study at Conservatorium van Amsterdam)

Professional experience


Akiyoshidai Contemporary music Seminar 2014


Lecture at 2nd LLD at Sugiyama Jogakuin University, Nagoya, Japan “Design in Music - image of sound”


Talk and concert at Noh × Contemporary Music


International Composition Seminar of International Ensemble Modern Academy 08/09




”Interweave" on the CD "Calls, Studies & Games - SaVaSa Trio"


Traveling pieces” portrait CD of Saar Berger


Music for Daydreams” CD of Ken Ishii


Люлка ( lijlka )” portrait CD of Sava Stoianov


“TRISHADE” portrait CD of Chikage Imai


 “Una voce poco fa” CD of Alliage Saxophone Quartet and Jang Eun Bae

Book & Magazine


Nagoya Theater Journal


Nagoya Theater Journal


Spanish webmagazine"SULPONTICELLO" by David Dúran

<2011 >

Article about Joji Yuasa, “Signpost of my music” by Chikage Imai on Kozui


Contemporary Compositional Techniques and OpenMusic by Rozalie Hirs, Bob Gilmore



Interview (Chunichi newspaper)  Oct 2019

Articles about ARToC 10 “Crossboundary” (Chunichi, Higashi Aichi, Chubukeizai)


Interview (Chunichi newspaper) 16 Nov 2018

Articles about ARToC 10 "Synecdochism II" (Chunichi, Higashi Aichi, Chubukeizai)


Interview about Synecdochism II <continuity> (Chunichi newspaper) 23 Aug 2016


Interview about Canal Art 2011 on The Asahi Shimbun (朝日新聞社), October 27 2011 Inerview about canal art 2011.pdf



ARToC10 “Crossboundary VII, VIII, IX, X ~ make a ring of community, shrine and canal” Nishimiys shrine, Nagoya, Japan


ARToC10 "Synecdochism II <continuity>"Nishimiys shrine, Nagoya, Japan


CICLO DE CONCERTOS. MÚSICA E ARTE: CORRESPONDENCIAS SONORAS General confessionat CGAC, Santiago de Compostela, Spain

Ernest Rombout Oboe Master Class & Concert at Senzoku Gakuen College of Music and Shibuya Actus Nonaka Anna Hall, Tokyo, Japan

Seainx 2017 The 1st Nagoya International Contemporary Music Academy


MASQUE Chikage Imai at Espace K, Strasbourg, France

Crossboundary spin-off, Recorder & Trumpet lecture & concert by Miako & Sava

Aichi triennale 2016


Crossboundary V Violin lecture & concert by Maya Egashira at Studio Haru, Nagoya, Japan

Trio Concert of Ensemble JUPE at Himeji Caspa Hall, Hyogo, Japan


Crossboundary IV Koto lecture & concert by Nanae Yoshimura at HITOMI hall, Japan

<Idea> music x flower x Azumaryu (Japanese sake)

Crossboundary III Flute lecture & concert by Ayako Okubo at Nagoya design center building 7F, the 1st studio, Nagoya, Japan

“Drawing” is on the portrait CD of Saar Berger released from Ensemble Modern Media

2014 MINI SERIES - Ensemble Studio 6 at SKC, Kragujevac, Serbia

Crossboundary II Recorder lecture & concert by Tosiya Suzuki

Simulgenesis is on CD released by Ensemble Modern Media


Toshiya Suzuki Recorder Recital in Shinokubi, Tokyo, Japan


November Music in Den Bosch, The Netherlands

Joji Yuasa ou la poétique des formes - Concert by French artist group "HANATSUmiroir" in Strasbourg, France

Music from Japan Festival at Merkin concert hall in New York, United States of America


Dounji (temple) Concert

Nakagawa Canal Art Project One in Nagoya, Japan (中川運河キャナルアート2011 Project One)

Takefu International Music Festival

Lucern Festival

Ensemble Modern’s regular concert at Alter Oper in Frankfurt, Germany

Wittener Tagen für Neue Kammermusik 2011 in Witten, Germany

Podiumkunst voor Onaalledaagse Kamermuziek (concert of Marieke Franssen) at De Link in Tilburg, The Netherlands


Akari Night - Akari Festival in Nagoya, Japan

Noh x Contemporary Music / vol.2 talk & concert Chikage Imai

Tokyo Sinfonietta the 28th Subscription Concert “Joji Yuasa” in Tokyo Japan

ZWEI Instrument in Frankfurt, Germany

Podiumkunst voor Onaalledaagse Kamermuziek (concert of Sax&Stix) at De Link in Tilburg, The Netherlands

Nakagawa Canal Art Project Zero in Nagoya, Japan (中川運河キャナルアート2010 Project Zero)


Concert from a French artist group Hanatsu ~mirior vol.1~ in Tokyo, Japan

Concert from a French artist group Hanatsu ~mirior vol.1~ in Strasbourg, France

Ostrava Days 2009 in Ostrava, Czech republic

Finale Concert Internationaal Kamermuziek Concours in Almere, The Netherlands

“Japanese Mix”, a concert of Sax&Stix in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

The 4th International Composition Seminar of the International Ensemble Modern Academy in Frankufurt and Munich, Germany


Klangwerktage 2008 in Hamburg, Germany

Suite Muziekweek 2008 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Festival d'Automne à Paris 2008 in Paris, France

"Componist van de week" by a Dutch Radio 4 programma in The Netherlands

Dark Musie Days 2008 in Reykjavík, Iceland


Concert of Miako Klein and Sava Stoianov in Lindow, Germany

Sibelius Akademian Konsettisalissa 2007 in Helsinki, Finland


Gaudeamus music festival 2006 at Muziekgebouw aan't IJ in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Project Open Music at Paradiso in Amsterdam

Portrait concert "Scharnieren -music and art space-" at De Ijsbreker in Amsterdam, The Netherlands


Project, Echo studio "Buriccha" in Japan, music for the illustrations for children

Project, Composer exchange Amsterdam-Berlin from a composer group, Klangnetz and Adapter ensemble in Berlin, Germany


Project, Collaboration of Young Japanese Artist at Overtoom 301 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Project, Opera uit het Hart from Stichting Yo! in Utrecht, The Netherlands


The 3rd concert of CHAM in Nagakute, Aichi, Japan


The 2nd concert of CHAM with a commission by the hall of Nagakute, Aichi, Japan


The 1st concert of CHAM at the town of Nagakute, Aichi, Japan

 Formed the composer group, CHAM with composer friends from the Aichi Prefectural University of Fine Arts and Music

Copyright 2011 Chikage Imai all rights received