William Prunkl

Cellist / Translator



2012年からは、ギタリストの高井博章とのデュオ「Pájaro Rojo」で、クラシック、ジャズ、ギターとチェロのためのオリジナル作品などを演奏している。

William Prunkl was born in Quincy, Illinois, and began playing the cello at the age of 12. While studying English Literature at Columbia University, he studied cello with Carter Brey, principal cellist of the New York Philharmonic. After graduating, he moved to Hungary and continued his music education at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest. A lifelong interest in Asia inspired him to go to Japan, and in 2001, he was awarded a Monbugakusho Fellowship from the Japanese Ministry of Education and Culture to pursue Japanese language study at Kyoto University and music performance studies at the Kyoto City University of Arts. After completing his fellowship he performed with The Kyoto Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra, Ensemble Kobe, and the Kansai Philharmonic. In addition to classical music activities, he performed with the ensemble Yugao, a fusion quartet consisting of shakuhachi, jazz piano, cello, and tabla, and toured Spain with the ensemble in the fall of 2010. A dedicated music educator, he has served on the jury of the Osaka International Music Competition since 2008, and worked for many years as an interpreter for Rohm Music Foundation’s Kyoto International Music Students Festival. He currently teaches privately at his cello studio Yusoan, a renovated Meiji-era Kyoto machiya, and also teaches for Yamaha Music. His current performance schedule includes collaborations with artists of various genres throughout Japan. Since 2012 he has performed classical, jazz, tango, and original works for guitar and cello with guitarist Hiroaki Takai in their ensemble Pájaro Rojo. A double passion for the music of Bach and traditional Japanese culture has inspired him to perform the Bach Cello Suites in Buddhist temples throughout Japan in an event series entitled “Bach in the Temple.” Also an active translator, his English translation of Hiroyuki Kiyokawa’s treatise on the history and aesthetics of kintsugi restoration will be published by Tankosha in November of 2021.

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