Akiko Pavolka is a Brooklyn-based musician, composer and educator who’s strikingly original music blends pop and jazz with the music and sensibilities of her native Japan. Akiko was born in Tokyo and grew up in Yokohama. Her newest recording, her fifth as a leader, is “Mahoroba” for the Fresh Sound New Talent label. It features her band House Of Illusion (Loren Stillman, Nate Radley, Matt Pavolka and Bill Campbell) and her long-time friend Argentinian composer Guillermo Klein performing a set of her brand-new compositions with Japanese lyrics. Pavolka moved to New York in 1995 after graduating Berklee College of Music in Boston and formed House Of Illusion shortly thereafter. She has been performing regularly ever since at venues such as Joe’s Pub, Cornelia Street Café, The 55 Bar, Shapeshifter Lab and Barbes. She has also toured in the United States, Japan, South America, and Europe, headlining at the Buenos Aires Jazz Festival in Argentina and Guimaraes Jazz Festival in Portugal among others. Most recently she traveled to Rome to perform with her frequent collaborator, saxophonist Matt Renzi.
She is also active as a music educator. For the past several years she has taught young children in New York’s South Bronx & Brooklyn neighborhoods as part of a program to bring professional artists into public schools and in addition she has a full roster of private students. Also she has taught master classes at AMR in Geneva (Switzerland) and Universidade Lusiada in Lisbon (Portugal) for music major college students.