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OUT NOW | Violinist Coco Tomita Releases Debut Album: “Origins” 


The 19-year-old Japanese violinist Coco Tomita recently won the Strings Final of the 2020 BBC Young Musician competition. The experience opened many doors, including being signed with Orchid Classics by its founder and director Matthew Trusler, to record her debut album. 

According to the press release, Trusler was so impressed with Tomita’s performance at the competition, that he immediately offered her the chance to record with the label.

Titled “Origins,” the album’s repertoire was selected by Tomita herself. For this recording, she plays on an Antonio Stradivari violin kindly loaned to her by a generous sponsor through the Beare’s International Violin Society

Featured on the disc are George Enescu’s Ménétrier (Impressions d’enfance) for solo violin, Op.28; Francis Poulenc’s Sonata for violin and piano (FP 119); Lili Boulanger’s Two Pieces for violin and piano; Jenö Hubay’s Carmen – Fantaisie brillante; Maurice Ravel’s Sonata No.2 in G major for violin and piano; and finally, Claude Debussy’s Beau soir, arranged by Jascha Heifetz

“The album includes works I felt a close connection to, and I simply wanted to share my love for them,” Tomita told The Violin Channel. “I [discovered] many intriguing links between the composers and it was apparent that there was a huge influence from legendary female artists on these certain works. 

“As a female artist myself and having great respect for these key figures such as Ginette Neveu and Jelly d’Arányi, I thought the album could be an homage to those who shaped such incredible works of music,” she continued.

Neveu was a key figure behind Poulenc’s Violin Sonata, while Ravel's violin writing was influenced by d’Arányi and violinist Hélène Jourdan-Morhange – for whom Ravel wrote his second violin sonata. d’Arányi was also taught by Hubay, whose work entitled Carmen, was performed by Tomita to great acclaim at the BBC Young Musician competition.

“There were many hours involved in molding these works and building them up to a stage where I was fully confident,” Tomita told us. “During this time, the most challenging thing was to keep my ideas and expression fresh, let the music guide me, and remind myself to not compare so much to what’s already out there.”

For her, the recording experience was a very enjoyable one. The producer for the album, Andrew Keener, played a big role in forming a space for Tomita to feel open and comfortable and realize the full limits of her expressions and ideas. 

“I could not have been blessed with a more elite and soulful team… with the incredible expertise of sound engineer Oscar Torres and such wonderful musicianship from my collaborator and pianist Simon Callaghan, I was able to have my desired sound come to life,” she said. 

For listeners new to the repertoire on “Origins,” Tomita hopes that through hearing them, they will have the chance “to discover their greatness and come to love them” as much as she does. 

“I hope that with my album and my selected works, a door even slightly opens to the sound world of these composers and their works… some of the miniature works I’ve found are true gems and were a joy to record,” she added. 

To listen to and purchase the album, click here.

A short video about it can be watched below:


Born into a musical family, Tomita began playing violin at age 4. Growing up in the UK, she made her debut at age 10 at London’s Cadogan Hall and has since performed around Europe, Canada, and Japan.

She began her violin studies at the Yehudi Menuhin School with Natasha Boyarsky and Lutsia Ibragimova. Currently, she attends Berlin’s Hochschule fur Musik Hanns Eisler, studying with Kolja Blacher.  

Her accolades include Gold Medals at the Vienna International Music Competition and Berliner International Music Competition, the Carl Flesch Prize at Carl Flesch Academy, and first prize plus the Duke of Devonshire Award at the Eastbourne Symphony Orchestra Young Soloist Competition.

Tomita plays on a violin made in 2015 by Frédéric Chaudière of Montpellier.


february, 2023


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