Kihara’s Activities as a Composer 


Kihara’s strong interest in composition began at a young age as he grew fascinated by the music of movies and dramas of all kinds, including animations. While continuing to build his career as the principal conductor of The Philharmonic Chorus of Tokyo (TOUKON), Kihara has also begun earning some credentials as a composer, creating original orchestral, vocal and piano music for feature films, TV dramas and more. 



Just as in his conducting, Kihara brings his talent and skills to composing that were developed through extensive training. At age 4, he began studying piano and solfège under Tomoko Tanaka, a composer and a pioneer of Western music education in Japan, who later taught him composition. He then studied composition, as well as harmony and counterpoint, under Teruyuki Noda from age 10 through his high school years, during which time he also began studying at the Seijo Solfège Institute. Upon graduating from the High School Attached to the Faculty of Music, Tokyo University of the Arts, Kihara left Japan for Europe to study music. 


While studying conducting and piano at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna, Kihara also began studying composition under Axel Seidelmann. “Momentan,” the string quartet that Kihara composed, won an award in the Haydn Bicentennial Composition Competition and was premiered by the AREA Quartet at the Schloss Esterházy in Eisenstadt, Austria. 


Kihara then completed his postgraduate studies in orchestral conducting, opera conducting and choral conducting at the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz and at the Berlin University of the Arts. He gained much experience performing at various opera houses in Austria and Germany before returning to Japan.


Once back in Japan, Kihara enrolled in the Master's Course in Music and Sound Design at Senzoku Gakuen School of Music to study desktop music creation. At the same time, he studied film music under Yohei Kobayashi and orchestration under Hideaki Haginomori. 


While exploring opportunities as a conductor for orchestra, opera and choir performances, Kihara remains passionate and committed to expanding his horizons as a composer.