Sumi Tonooka

Sumi Tonooka (pronounced To-NO-ka) has been called a “fierce and fascinating composer and pianist” (Jazz Times), “provocative and compelling” (New York Times), and “continually inventive, original, surprising, and a total delight,” (Cuadranos de Jazz, Madrid).

During a career spanning more than 30 years that has taken her from bases in Philadelphia & Boston, to New York & Seattle, Tonooka has been developing a body of work that surprises and delights audiences - quietly piling up accolades from jazz writers and fellow musicians.

In 2013, the American Composers Orchestra and The Center for Jazz Studies at Columbia University, in cooperation with EarShot, the National Orchestra Composition Discover Network, presented Tonooka's first work for symphony ochestra as part of the second Jazz Composers Orchestra Institute (JCOI) Readings.

In her most recent solo recording, NOW, “Tonooka covers a lot of stylistic territory in a perfectly sequenced show, and plays with a rare spirituality and musical sagacity. A superb solo piano outing” (All About Jazz). Her 2009 recording, Initiation (2009 ARC Records, with tenor saxophonist Erica Lindsay), garnered an “Honorable Mention” in the 2010 Village Voice Jazz Critic’s Poll. Recording often in trio or quartet with such noted jazz stalwarts as bassist Rufus Reid and drummers Akira Tana and Lewis Nash, Tonooka characteristically blends her own compositions with highly personal readings of jazz standards.

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”Congratulations! Your CD - Long Ago Today - has been voted as one of Jazz Improv NY Magazine’s Top Jazz CDs of 2008. “ - Eric Nemeyer (Publisher), Jazz Improv Magazine

”Her best to date, and a highly recommended recording, it seems Tonooka is still tapping potential while refining her search techniques on this very satisfying and enjoyable effort. “ - Michael G. Nastos, **** 4 STARS - All Music Guide

”Tonooka's music is beautifully conceived and enthralling; a constant joy that will hopefully be followed up more often. ” - Jerry D'Souza, All About Jazz

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Upcoming

Date Detail Price
Dec1Sun
Sumi Tonooka Trio
Ocean City Free Public Library
Ocean City, NJ

Discography

NOW: Solo Live at the Howland Cultural Center

NOW: Solo Live at the...

ARC - Artists Recording Collective
2012

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Now

Now

ARC - Artists Recording Collective
2012

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Initiation

Initiation

ARC - Artists Recording Collective
2010

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Long Ago Today

Long Ago Today

ARC - Artists Recording Collective
2009

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Long Ago Today

Long Ago Today

ARC - Artists Recording Collective
2008

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