Akira Nishimura (Nishimura Akira, 西村 朗) was a renowned Japanese composer born on 8 September 1953 in Osaka, Japan. He passed away on 7 September 2023, just a day before his 70th birthday, due to jaw cancer.


Nishimura’s musical journey started with his higher education in Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music, where he studied composition and musical theory. In addition to Western music theory, he also explored Asian traditional music, religion, aesthetics, cosmology, and heterophonic concepts. These diverse interests left a lasting imprint on his compositions.

Over the years, he garnered several awards, both nationally and internationally. Among these, the 36th Suntory Music Award in 2004 stands out as a significant recognition of his work. His compositions were also featured in many overseas music festivals.

In 2007, Nishimura served as a judge at the Toru Takemitsu composition award, further solidifying his reputation in the world of music composition.



  • Asters: Premiered in February 2019.

Other Works

  • Mantra of the Light: This composition is for a female choir and orchestra.

Other Activities

Apart from composing, Nishimura was also an academic. He served as a professor of composition at the Tokyo College of Music, imparting his extensive knowledge to the next generation of composers.


Akira Nishimura passed away on 7 September 2023 from jaw cancer. His death came just one day shy of his 70th birthday, marking the end of an era in Japanese composition.