Founded by violinist Meg Okura, the Pan Asian Chamber Jazz Ensemble “elegantly intertwine(s) elements of classical, jazz and world folk into a new sound,” - Elliot Simon, All About Jazz (2006). Born in Tokyo, Okura toured all of Asia as a solo violinist, making her U.S. debut at Kennedy Center as a teen. Graduate of the Juilliard School, she has appeared on over 50 albums and film scores as a composer, violinist and an erhu player, and has performed with artists from Lee Konitz, Steve Swallow, Michael Brecker, Dianne Reeves, to Cirque du Soleil and David Bowie, to actor Terrence Haward. The P.A.C.J.E. has appeared in a range of venues from Knitting Factory to Lincoln Center, the NYC Winter JazzFest, to KL International Jazz Festival, sold-out concerts tours in the Midwest, California and Japan. The ensemble’s self-titled debut album was the finalist in the Best Album of 2006 Independent Musicians Awards. Okura was named “the queen of chamber jazz” in 2010 by the All About Jazz after the release of their second album “Naima”. In 2013, the ensemble released “Music of Ryuichi Sakamoto”, featuring pianist Helen Sung. The ensemble will be recording its first Jewish/Asian themed album “L’dor Vador” (from generation to generation) this year.
“Meg has created what surely must someday become a Jazz standard. Meg
Okura has given a stunning reintroduction to the music from the genius of
- Travis Rogers, Jazz Times
“chamber jazz has found its queen in Meg Okura.”
- Dan Bilawsky, All About Jazz
“…a stunning improvisation on top of an impressionistic backdrop.”
- Bill Milkowski, Jazz Times
... mixes a classically trained mastery of strings, piano and drums with
quick-witted compositional twist performed with high energy.
- Jennifer Odell, The Down Beat Magazine
“Naima is the magnificent new release from violin virtuoso Meg Okura and
the Pan Asian Chamber Jazz Ensemble