Somei Satoh was born in 1947 in Sendai (northern Honshu), Japan. He has emerged as one of Japan's most internationally acclaimed and important composers of the post-Takemitsu era. He arrived at music not through the usual technical studies of harmony, counter point and orchestration, but rather as an outgrowth of the spiritual exercises of Shintoism and Zen Buddhism. To Shintoism he owes the sense of simplicity and essential purity that pervades his creations; by Zen Buddhism he was inspired to capture a sense of the infinite, the transcendent, the timelessly static. He began his career in 1969 following studies at the Nihon University of Art with "Tone Field," an experimental, mixed media group based in Tokyo. In 1972 he produced "Global Vision," a multimedia arts festival that encompassed musical events, works by visual artists, and improvisational performance groups. In 1980, he was awarded the Japan Art Festival Prize. He has written more than thirty compositions, including works for piano, orchestra, chamber music, choral and electronic music, theater pieces and music for traditional Japanese instruments. Recent commissions include pieces for the Kronos Quartet, Bang on a Can, and the New York Philharmonic, among others. Somei Satoh created the music for two works by Alonzo King: Satoh (2005) and In to Get Out (2000).