Know Your GoH! – Yuki Kajiura

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by Marlan Moore, staff writer, Inside AX – Anime Expo

Every year, Anime Expo invites the most talented artists, performers, designers, and more to join us as our Guests of Honor (GoHs). From superstar voice actors to J-Pop idols, top mangaka to world-renowned designers, AX brings the goods. Know Your GoH! spotlights these amazing talents, giving you the scoop on what makes them honor worthy. Here, we won’t only tell, but show you what makes our Guests the best in their fields. Today we spotlight composer Yuki Kajiura.

When thinking of some of the best composers to come out of Japan in the last few decades, a few names immediately come to mind. Joe Hisaishi. Yoko Kanno. Nobuo Uematsu. Standing shoulder-to-shoulder with those giants is none-other-than Yuki Kajiura. A multi-hyphenate herself, Kajiura does much more than compose – she’s also a singer, songwriter, pianist, and producer.

As a composer, Kajiura created her first piece of music at the ripe old age of seven for her grandmother. Despite her obvious talent for music, Kajiura would go on to become a programmer before deciding to do something we’re all thankful for — going back to the music. Some of Yuki Kajiura’s best known work can be found on the soundtracks of anime series Tsubasa Chronicle and Fate/Zero, as well as on the soundtracks for the Xenosaga games (Episodes II & III).

In 2008, Kajiura put together the musical project FictionJunction, which will be joining Kajiura as Guests of Honor and be performing with her at AX 2012. FictionJunction comprises of Kajiura herself sharing vocal duties with four other talented singers - Keiko Kubota, Wakana Ootaki, Kaori Oda, and Yuriko Kaida. Together, they have done work on Gundam SEED, Pandora Hearts, Sacred Seven, as well as others.

Thanks to Japanese Anime label FlyingDog, a bunch of Yuki Kajiura and FictionJunction’s work will be available on iTunes in North America and Europe starting today, so if you’re interested in hearing what Kajiura has to offer, head on over to iTunes and find out what you’ve been missing!

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