Described as “mold-breaking,” “alert and alive,” “dramatic,” and “vital” by The New York Times, Andy Akiho is an eclectic composer and performer of contemporary classical music. A virtuoso percussionist based in New York City, his primary performance instrument is the steel pan. Notable engagements include commissions by the New York Philharmonic, the National Symphony Orchestra and Carnegie Hall’s Ensemble ACJW, and multiple concerts at the Kennedy Center.
Akiho has been recognized with several awards, including the 2014–15 Luciano Berio Rome Prize, the 2015 Lili Boulanger Memorial Fund, a 2014 Fromm Foundation Commission from Harvard University, the 2014 American Composers Orchestra Underwood Emerging Composers Commission and many others. Additionally, his compositions have been featured on PBS’s News Hour with Jim Lehrer.
Akiho will be joined by the KU Percussion Group (KUPG), a nationally renowned chamber percussion ensemble dedicated to performances of new and classic percussion repertoire. Mobilizing percussion’s enormous sonic and stylistic breadth, KUPG presents invigorating performances of classic repertoire while collaborating with composers on groundbreaking new works.
KUPG’s mission is to work closely with composers on new works for percussion ensemble and is proud to have collaborated with some of America’s most talented young composers, including Amy Beth Kirsten, Tonia Ko, Caroline Shaw, Thomas Kotcheff and Andrea Mazzariello.