EMI loves to make music. That's pretty much it, but if you want a little more proof look no further than the hours of cassette tapes she burned through as a five-year-old, performing her heart out for no one but her younger sister.
Since then, she's brought her love of music and performing to wider audiences around the globe, sharing the stage as a flute player, singer, and composer with performers including Yo-Yo Ma, Paul Simon, James Taylor, and four U.S. Presidents, (though her inner teenager will tell you her career highlight was being called on stage to sing Oops I Did It Again at a Britney Spears concert.) You can catch one of EMI's future performances by checking out the LIVE link.
EMI loves to collaborate with other artists and learn about and absorb new kinds of music from around the world - she was born in Japan and raised in London and Boston, but moved to New York to study at The Juilliard School where she was hired upon graduation to the Ear Training faculty, where she makes faces like this (Britney taught EMI a lot), while torturing willing students in their quest for the best ears ever.
For a complete bio with all of the serious bells and whistles included, click here.
To listen to 5 year old EMI do dramatic readings about animals click here.
April 17th, 2021
The Allemande from Bach's Partita for solo flute - one of my favorite pieces to play - is no less virtuosic today than the day he wrote it, asking flute players to traverse the full length of the instrument from the lowest note to the highest with a constant stream of 16th notes reminiscent of some of his other famous Preludes written for the Cello and Keyboard. One day as I sat alone during the pandemic, I wondered...what would it be like if I took Bach's Allemande and used it as seed material, weaving newly composed A and B repeats into the piece after hearing Bach's original as well as a fun introduction that also incorporates the voice...
October 23rd, 2020
Emi joins composer Michael Hersch and sculptor Christopher Cairns in imagining a socially distanced LIVE concert series amongst sculpture: ...thus far and no further. The series includes 5 live performances between October 2020 and June 2021, and features 5 world premieres by Michael Hersch, Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Missy Mazzoli, Christopher Fox, and Alican Çamci.
September 28th, 2020
Emi joins H+H colleagues Aisslinn Nosky, Guy Fishman, Susana Ogata, and Ian Watson for "The Magic of Bach" - stream it now at home!
Scroll to 9:22 for Emi's new take on Bach's Allemande from the flute Partita
September 15th, 2020
The Red Bank Chamber Music series in New Jersey presents Emi and her colleagues Brook Speltz, Brendan Speltz, and Luke Fleming of the Manhattan Chamber Players in works by Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven.
June 26th, 2020
A collaborative zoom performance between performers, composers, and architects from the Marshall Scholars, PDSoros Fellows, and CUNY Graduate Center featuring the music of Robert Beaser, Nicolas Namoradze, J.S. Bach, Elizabeth Ogonek, and Alexander Scriabin.
May 23rd, 2020
Emi joins Jan Vogler for his new weekly show on WQXR "Where the Music Never Sleeps" - a show that delves into artists' minds and process in this unusual time. Emi plays her arrangement of Biber's Passacaglia and shares more about how she created her version of Mozart's Flute quartet for flute and voice trio, alongside other guests Emanuel Ax, Fabio Luisi, Kevin Zhu, Inon Barnaton, and Mira Wang.
May 20th, 2020
Emi joins Gloria Chien's initiative bringing music to Boston healthcare workers as a way to "play it forward" each night at 7 pm.
In this video performance, Emi plays the second movement from Mozart's Flute Quartet in D Major - with her voice sampled as the violin, viola, and cello.
May 11th, 2020
Emi joins Jeremy Denk in for an in depth discovery on how to think like Bach! Emi plays a solo flute arrangement of the Adagio from his Sonata in C Major. Other guests include neuroscientist Daniel Levitin, cellist Steven Isserlis, and music therapist Concetta Tomaino.
April 26th, 2020
Each Sunday at 3pm Lincoln Center asks artists to share some humanity, in concert. Nominated by fellow AMOC'er Anthony Roth Costanzo, Emi shares the traditional Hungarian lullaby from Ray Lustig's opera: Semmelweis, about the visionary behind hand-washing.
April 26th, 2020
Emi shows you how to make a PVC Baroque Flute step-by-step at home!
March 27th, 2020
Emi joins Jan Vogler's initiative, streaming musicians performing from their homes for 24 hours straight!
Emi performs her arrangement of Biber's Passacgaliga and John Williams' Handkerchief Scene from Memoirs of a Geisha.
The debut album from Emi Ferguson. Released in September, 2017 the album spent four weeks on the Billboard Classical Albums, Classical Crossover, and World Albums charts and has been met with acclaim from critics and listeners.
"...it's an entirely unique listening experience that redefines the idea of Baroque Pop..."
- Peter Jurew, All About Jazz
Taking Bach out of the museum and infusing his music with equal parts tradition, funk, whimsy, and fun, Emi Ferguson and Ruckus take you on a wild romp through some of Bach’s most playful and transcendent works.
"Wit, panache, and the jubilant, virtuosic verve of a bebop-Baroque jam session electrified and illuminated..."
- Boston Musical Intelligencer