Marimba / Percussion performer.
An endorser and artist of Mike Balter Mallets and Japanese KOROGI Marimba. Based in Detmold, Germany.
Ayami Okamura is a Japanese percussion soloist and chamber musician based in Germany. Born in Kyoto, Japan, she began her musical education at the age of 5 under piano teachers Ryoko Tsutsumi and Michiko Ikeda. Ayami furthered her percussion education at age 18, while studying at Kyoto City University of the Arts in Japan. Here, she began exploring the marimba which became the center of her interest in percussion under the guidance Tsuyoshi Yamamoto, Mutsumi Tsuzaki, Makoto Nakura, and Kunihiko Komori. During her bachelor’s degree, she was among the top prize winners as a marimba soloist at Great Wall International, the Fresh Artist Competition in 2011, the Japan Classical Music Competition in 2012.
In 2013, Ms. Okamura moved to the United States to study at the Boston Conservatory with marimbist Nancy Zeltsman, and percussionists Samuel Solomon, and Doug Perkins. Here she pursued a Masters in Music with a focus on Marimba. Since moving to Boston, she won the 2014-2015 Boston Conservatory Orchestra Concerto Competition and performed Paul Creston’s Marimba Concerto under the direction of Bruce Hangen and the Boston Conservatory Orchestra in Sanders Theater at Harvard in Boston. In 2015, she won the Italy International Percussion Competition, Marimba B Category with a special prize by Adams Company, which provided only three winners among all percussion instruments categories.
Ayami performs with violinist Izumi Hoshino as MixUs, who was guest at Zeltsman Marimba Festival 2015 at Rutgers University in New Jersey, also frequently performs with award-winning percussionist Dan deSimone as Shiki Percussion Duo who was guest at Zeltsman Marimba Festival 2017. She is a member of Japanese Percussion Ensemble "Legare Incontro", and marimba quartet "Marimba Four Hand".
Ayami performed the world premiere of “Conversation Piece” for guitar and marimba by Kurt Schwertsik with guitarist Eliot Fisk at the Boston GuitarFest to be held at New England Conservatory in Boston.
She has worked and/or performed with artists such as world famous percussionists Gordon Stout, Julie Spencer, Ivana Bilic, Nikola Kerbanjevic, Arnold Marinissen, Samuel Solomon, Nancy Zeltsman, Nanae Mimura, Wei-Chen Lin, and composers Takuo Kochi, Andrew Thomas, Paul Lansky, and Peter Klatzow.
In order to expand the repertoire for marimba, Ayami is focused on making arrangements for classical/modern repertoire, world music, pop, and jazz tunes. Her recent solo projects focus on the marimba as a tool for therapy through music. In these unique projects, she uses her own texts to connect the repertoire into one complete thought.
Ayami's recording of "Suite for Solo Marimba" by Suzanne Sheppard is released, which is available on iTunes, Amazon, Spotify and CD Baby. (https://store.cdbaby.com/cd/ayamiokamura) The free samples of marimba sounds by Shiki are available at Converse Rubber Tracks Sample Library. (www.conversesamplelibrary.com) She recently recorded David Friedman’s “Tell Me A Story” for percussion quintet and “Charlie Chaplin” for marimba solo in Berlin, Germany.
Ayami is proud to endorse Mike Balter Mallets and KOROGI Marimba.