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The Emergent Piano
(Acoustic Piano Solo)

*Extended techniques can be modified based on the piano and venue conditions

"Embodiment of a Muse"

- Greg Burk,

“Her solo performance last year..was truly one of the most stirring, beautiful, and eloquent things I have heard in years”

-Nels Cline (Wilco, The Nels Cline Singers)

"Emergent" in philosophy refers to "a property arising as an effect of complex causes and not analyzable simply as the sum of their effects"(Lexico). 

In this solo acoustic piano program, Honda explores the possibilities of sound making by challenging the capabilities of the piano as an instrument and herself as a pianist while combining traditional and multiple extended piano techniques.   


"Piano music is essentially an art of illusion" Honda says, like creating a beautiful singing quality from a massively percussive instrument, or suggesting the unique sounds of Asian instruments such as the Koto &  gamelans, or imitating the sounds of nature which can range from barely audible to powerful enough to be felt as air vibrations through your body. 


This exciting, fun, endearing and thoughtful program showcases the wide range of enthralling sounds a piano can generate and is meant to stimulate the ears and bodies of adventurous music and piano lovers of all ages.  This program fascinates audiences and inspire many questions therefore also suitable for combining  with Q&A/speaking engagement/lecture for general public also for educational settings.


"Ms. Honda prepared the piano using a variety of techniques that richly added to her compositions....The effect was such that the entire audience felt that they were joining Motoko on a fun musical adventure The music itself was fresh, involving and beautiful.  I received many comments from my staff, volunteers and the audience expressing how much they enjoyed the concert and even asking when Motoko would be returning.  Motoko Honda combines prodigious pianistic talent with giant imagination.  Her ability to create new sounds for the piano to match her vision for a composition is remarkable.  Yet she also has a relaxed and friendly presentation style that our audience really enjoyed"

-Matthew A. Wolka, Director, Old First Concerts, San Francisco, CA.  

Short Bio

Motoko Honda is a critically acclaimed Japanese concert pianist, composer, and sound artist who has created a distinctive sound through her holistic approach to music, and her exceptional sensitivity in relating to other art forms and technologies. Employing a "virtuoso technique paired with her intensely imaginative mind" (Susan Dirende, L.A. Splash Magazine), and with stylistic influences ranging from jazz, world music to contemporary prepared piano with electronics, Motoko's compositions and structured improvisations are intended to affect the skin, organs and minds of the listener rather than simple recitations of rhythmic and harmonic themes. Portrayed as a "keyboard alchemist" (Chris Barton, L.A. Times), and an "embodiment of a muse" (Greg Burk, Metaljazz), Motoko's performances transport audiences on sonic adventures that transcend the boundaries and conventions of contemporary music. 

Motoko has performed and recorded with many acclaimed improvisers such as Wadada Leo Smith, Elliott Sharp, Nels Cline, Ben Wendel, Lucas Ligeti, William Winant and more.

Let’s Work Together

I'm very open to collaborate, play, record and compose music for special events, films, theater works, dance, interdisciplinary projects, chamber and orchestra music and more..

Feel free to email me:

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