I sing, I think, and I speak.
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- pablo picasso
Singer and songwriter Yurie Fukagawa sings the universal language of music. A multi-lingual voice that is unique among an onslaught of talented singers, Yurie, native of Yokohama, Japan loves to connect with her listeners through her soothing and passionate voice. Blending a myriad of styles, from classical, pop, jazz and traditional Japanese music, Yurie is a dynamic and convincing storyteller. She strongly feels that the best way to bring people together and creatively communicate to one another is to interpret music with her voice and performance.
Yurie has performed in various prestigious venues in the U.S., Japan and Europe. She has graced the stage at the Carnegie Hall with the Chamber Singers led by choir director, Bruce Rogers from Mount San Antonio College, California. She has also sung at the IAJE International Convention with the jazz ensemble, “Singcopation” and, and has won a NY downbeat magazine "Best Collegiate Vocal Jazz Choir" award in 2005. She has shared the stage with Kristin Korb Trio in Los Angeles and Daemon Meader of The New York Voices.
In Tokyo, the epicenter for a plethora of artistic endeavors, Yurie participated in many late night jam sessions with local and touring artists. She joined a J-Pop (Japanese Pop) group, “Don Ultra”, fronting the band as the singer and co-director. E-sum Records (Universal Records Japan) released Don Ultra’s debut single, “Beyond” and "Sora Namida Iro" in 2008. The band released an album "Kyun-Kyoku" the following year. Her composition, "Power of Love" was chosen as a promotional song for a Japanese cosmetic brand, Aluge. She performed in popular venues throughout Tokyo area, and has appeared in radio shows.
However, Yurie regarded jazz music as her backbone and she never left it behind. She continued to study jazz while working with her J-Pop band and booked many gigs on the side solely as a jazz singer. Yurie loves jazz and views it as a great discipline. In 2011, she decided to come back to the U.S. to further her studies in jazz music and to expand the language of music. She was accepted to the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, and studied with talented musicians from all over the world. In 2013, she led her quartet for International Jazz Festival in Bern, Switzerland.
With a passion for choir music, Yurie auditioned to become a member of New York Choral Society, and had performed at the prestigious venues such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center Alice Tully Hall, Barclays Center, Madison Square Garden, and many churches and concert halls throughout New York area. She had an opportunity to share stages with Andrea Bocelli, Renee Fleming, Joyce Didonato, Angela Meade, and Heather Headley.
Through her travels in the U.S. and to other countries, Yurie has found this to be true: “Music really inspires people and uplifts them. Every culture uses music to express emotions. Music is the universal language that we all can understand, no matter what background you are from.” As a performer, Yurie’s goal is connect people from all over the world together with music. To deepen her knowledge on her own instrument, Yurie studied with Justin Stoney of New York Vocal Coaching, and finished a 40 hour teacher training program to share the joy of singing.
Yurie holds a Bachelor's Degree in Fine Arts from the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music. She has studied with Richard Harper, Jane Ira Bloom, Peter Eldridge, Danny Mixon, Janet Lawson, Richard Boukas, George Cables, Tommy Campbell and Julie Reumart.