Neoclassical Suite is a column that will present 7 recent, distinctive tracks of the neoclassical-modern classical-contemporary -and beyond!- music field. 

The Players

Laura Sullivan

(cinematic, modern classical)

Laura grew up in a one-hundred-year-old farmhouse at the foothills of Mt Lassen, in Northern California.

At the time her family moved in, the home was so rundown that the plumbing and electricity barely worked. The acres were strewn with broken-down cars, furniture, and ancient junk from days gone by.

But it was her parent’s dream to own a farm, and that’s what they could afford. Their vision was to make it into a beautiful home.

And they did. For years they labored, but it paid off – thriving with chickens, ducks, cows, horses, pigs, and a throng of feisty cats and friendly dogs.

Laura’s mother was classically trained at the piano and her father, John, played country guitar and harmonica. John drove his pick-up all the way from Oklahoma to California to bring home a piano once owned by Laura’s Great Grandma.

Now, with a piano in the home, every night was filled with music. Laura’s mother taught her to play, starting when she was four years old.

She went on to major in music in college and received a bachelor’s degree.

She since recorded twelve albums, which frequently chart on Billboard Top Ten bestseller lists, including ‘Love’s River’ which won a Grammy®. What made that day extra special for Laura was that her family was seated in the audience when she went to the stage to receive her award.

Laura composes underscore for shows on CBS, NBC, Fox, and Sony. Her music is featured in two Emmy Award-Winning documentaries.

Claire Bigley

(new age, neoclassical, solo piano)

A newcomer to the New Age Piano genre, Claire’s music is created with the intention of calming, empowering, and nourishing the listener. Pianistic and improvisational in nature, each track is a one of a kind in musical flow.

Kristian Kamp

(neoclassical, contemporary music)

‘Solace’ is the debut single from Danish neoclassical composer Kristian Kamp. Kristian holds a bachelor degree in electronic music and sound art from the Danish National Academy of Music. Through the years he has been a touring musician in Europe and US for different pop acts, created sound art for exhibitions, as well as he has performed on his own as a techno DJ.

David Walrod

(neoclassical, ambient)

My name is David Walrod, and I’m an American pianist and singer-songwriter. I’d tell you where I’m from if I had a damned clue, but pops was a fighter pilot, and the Air Force always had us moving around. I never could stop traveling. Today my girlfriend and I live in a slick little studio-style RV, and we float about the States with our sweet, salt-and-pepper mutt, Ruger.

I started taking piano at five and loved it, but quit when I grew tired of reciting others’ music. I wanted to create. After playing drums in middle and high school, I returned to my first love in college, earning a degree in classical and jazz piano. Six months later, in July of 2017, I released my first batch of original songs in my debut EP, Dry Erase Dreams.

After that release I continued to push my artist career hard. I moved to Nashville, toured with bigger names, and did all the things a new artist is “supposed” to do, but eventually needed something else. Feeling increasingly fearful that nothing was behind my dreams but a vain longing for recognition, I dropped music entirely in 2019. I cancelled my studio time, upcoming releases and tour, and disappeared.

That fall I dismounted my homemade hamster wheel, and begun to believe, even if only sometimes, that I’m enough the way I am. I’m grateful that my journey brought me back to music, but more importantly, that it brought me back to me. Not who I think I should be, just me.

Mikael Oterhals

(neoclassical, cinematic)

Pianist and composer located in Stockholm, Sweden. 
 Born on December 28th 1996, in Uppsala, Sweden, Mikael’s musical interest started as a child when his parents bought him a keybord as a Christmas gift. 
 In later years Oterhals studied several years of classical music and composition leading to releasing two EP’s and several singles containing classical piano music with a modern sound influenced by other genres as Pop, Jazz and Film Music.

Wataru Sato

(neoclassical, solo piano)

Wataru Sato (Gecko) Born in 1990.

Japanese Based composer and Pianist. In 2010, he began working as a solo project , initially creating piano-based electronica and modern-classical works.

He is currently active as a New Age and Minimalist,modern-classical musician, creating piano pieces with a melancholic worldview.

In order to improve his piano skill and gain more inspiration, he has been studying under the pianist Lubomyr Melnyk, whose works have been released on Erased Tapes, a prestigious modern-classical label that has unearthed artists such as Ólafur Arnalds and Nils Frahm. Lubomyr’s influence on Wataru has been reflected on his works.

In July 2018, he released his second piano solo album “Innocence” nationwide, and in September of the same year, he started a chamber music project consisting of piano and strings, and it is sublimated into strings album “After World” in April 2021. His band”Gecko&Tokage Parade” , which he leads, released their second full album “Nomadic Flow” on his own label “Tokage Records”, and it debuted at #4 on the Tower Records Jazz Chart. In December 2019, the band moved to modern jazz label “Playwright” which includes fox capture plan, where they have successfully performed solo in venues such as Motion Blue Yokohama,Cotton Club Japan run by Blue Note. As a supporting musician, he has participated in the solo project österreich of Kunimitsu Takahashi(ex.the cabs) who was in charge of the theme song for the anime “Tokyo Ghoul” and new generation of songwriters Nakimushi☔︎ which has gained overwhelming support from junior high, high school, and university students and has become a hot topic on social media.

In 2020, he started the unit paw with Mio Sasaki , who is active in the chorus of Gesu no Kiwami Otome , indigo la end etc. He is also a highly acclaimed composer and arranger, and served as sound producer for “transparent project” a joint project with Karen Aoki, one of Japan’s leading jazz singers. He is a unique pianist who composes, produces and performs with a wide range of sounds that cross ambient, electronica, pop and jazz.

Iyad Rimawi

(neoclassical, orchestral, post rock, epic music)

Iyad Rimawi is one of the most famous and influential composers in the Arab world today. He started his career in 1998 as a Songwriter and Producer for the pioneering Syrian band Kulna Sawa. Iyad Rimawi wrote the lyrics and music for most of Kulna Sawa’s songs and was the main producer for the band’s albums: Safinet Noh (Noah’s arc) 1998 – Shi Jdeed (New Stuff) 1999 – Musaique 2004 – Kulna Sawa Radio Station 2009.

In 2001, he built his own recording studio (Rimawi Studio), and started composing, arranging, and producing music for the biggest TV series in the Arab world now. Among his most famous works are Maraya 2006 – Forgiveness 2011 – Rouge 2014 – Godfather 2015 – Cello 2015 – Nadam 2016 – Orkidia 2017 – Haramlek 2019 – Masafet Aman 2019. His melodic and touching scores, with their unique fusion of oriental and classical elements, combined with modern vibes and band elements, resulted of unforgettable themes that gained him his well-deserved reputation as one of the most talented Arab composers today.

Iyad was the first Arab artist to sign with SONY Music Middle East In 2012. He released 3 albums that all hit a peak position in Virgin Megastore charts, Tales from Damascus 2012, Silence in Syria 2016 and Damascus Now 2019. Iyad worked the last album in a time of disturbance & war in Syria which is reflected in his music. He was able to revive spirits and bring smiles to the Syrian people with his 2017 tour around Syria and Dubai and all his events were sold out.

The Music

Christos Doukakis