• Born 1974
Often appears with
The Japanese flutist Kazunori Seo is a prominent concerto soloist, recitalist, and chamber music player, making frequent appearances in his native Japan, in France (where he had most of his training), and in New York. On recordings he has emerged as a specialist in flute music of the Classical and early Romantic periods, and his arrangements of symphonies by Beethoven and Mahler for chamber group have gained notable popularity in Japan. Seo was born in Kitakyushu, in Japan's Fukuoka prefecture, in 1974. He took up the flute at six and was taught by his parents, who were musicians and soon identified his unusual talent. Seo traveled to France for studies at the Paris Conservatory (the CNSMDP), where he worked with a succession of teachers in both flute and chamber music. He took the coveted Premier Prix (first prize) at the conservatory in both flute (1998) and chamber music (1999), and went on for concluding studies with Maurice Bourgue. In the late '90s and early 2000s, Seo was a consistent winner of major prizes, including the Jean-Pierre Rampal and Carl Nielsen Prizes in 1998 and the Pro Musicis International Award in 2005; he subsequently joined the roster of the Pro Musicis agency and began to tour internationally. He has appeared as a recitalist in such prestigious venues as the Salle Cortot in Paris and the Weill recital hall at Carnegie Hall in New York, as well as at various Tokyo sites. As a soloist, Seo has performed across Asia, Europe, and North America with such groups as the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, the Odense Symphony Orchestra, and the Nicolaus Esterházy Sinfonia. His chamber music partners have included flutist Patrick Gallois and pianist Jörg Demus. Seo's recordings have appeared on the Naxos label since 2001 and have often traversed the flute repertory of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. He has performed little-known works by Ignaz Moscheles, Leopold Hofmann, Carl Czerny, and (with Gallois) the Concerto for two flutes and orchestra composed jointly by the 19th century German-Ukrainian flutist-composers Franz and Karl Doppler. In 2019 Seo, again with Gallois, released an album devoted to the flute duets of Wilhelm Friedemann Bach.