Keiji Munesada

Keiji Munesada

Keiji Munesada was born in Fukui, Japan in 1949.  He studied saxophone with Ikuko Mizuno, Yushi Ishiwata, and Yuichi Ohmuro. He won the first prize of Japan Music Competition in 1973.  He graduated from Kunitachi College of Music with Takeoka Award, and he made appearances in Yomiuri New Artist Concert and Tokagakudo New Artist Concert at the Imperial Place. Soon after graduating from Kunitachi College of Music in 1975, he became a lecturer at Showa College of Music.  In 1976, he enterd the Conservatoire de Bordeaux and studied saxophone with Jean-Marie Londeix and chamber music with R. Peret. He completed his studies with a gold prize by the agreement of all judges and won an honor award from the city of Bordeaux.

Since coming back to Japan in 1978, he returned to Showa College of Music as a lecturer and worked until 1998. He has been a lecturer at Elisabeth University of Music since 1983, a lecturer at Senzoku Gakuen College of Music since 2004, and a visiting professor at Kurashiki Sakuyo University from 2007 to 2016. In addition to sending a large number of saxophonists to the world so far, he has also been recognized as a leader of saxophone by organizing and developing saxophone orchestra from an early stage and establishing its form in Japan.

In 1980, after returning to Japan, he held a recital for the first full-scale program as a Japanese saxophonist in Tokyo and attracted attention. He signed an exclusive contract with Nonaka Trading Co., and after starting as a Selmer player, he performed many concerts in various parts of Japan and established a firm position as a Japanese saxophonist. Many Japanese composers have written saxophone works for him, and he has given many first performance in Japan such as Denisov's Sonata and Saugue's Oreson to spread the repertoire of classical saxophone.

He participated in World Saxophone Congresses; the 6th in Chicago, the 7th in Nuremberg, the 8th in Washington, the 9th in Kawasaki, the 10th in Pesaro, the 13th in Minneapolis, the 14th in Ljubljana, the 15th in Bangkok, the 16th in St. Andrews, the 17th in Strasbourg, and the 18th in Zagreb. In the seventh, he has performed Tomaj's concerto with the Munich Radio Orchestra.

He formed the Tokyo Saxophone Ensemble in 1980 and held concerts throughout 1994.  In 1989, he formed Munesada-Watanabe Saxophone Duo, and released the compact disc Saxophone Duo. In 2004, he released a solo album Bel Canto and in 2010 released Orazon. In 2014, he formed the piano trio Trio Senzoku by saxophone and released compact disc Kaleidoscope including concerts in various places.

Since 2003, he has participated in International Saxophone Quartet with saxophonists from French, American and Canadian, and has performed in the United States, Belgium, Canada, France, Japan, Slovenia, Thailand and Zagreb.  In 2018, he formed a piano quintet Ensemble Fila Alba by Saxophone and started concert activities.

He served as a jury member for the 2nd Jean-Marie Londeix Competition in 2008, and he has continued to be a jury member for the Japan Wind and Percussion Competition since 1996.

He has served as a member of the steering committee since the establishment of the Japan Saxophone Association and is responsible for accounting.  As a member of the executive committee at the 9th World Saxophone Congress held in Kawasaki in 1988, he contributed greatly to its success.  Since 1998, he has been working on the development of saxophone education in Japan by organizing a junior saxophone competition every year.