Kira Namiko Wales (b. 2000) is a composer and violinist based in Miami, Florida. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Music degree in Music Theory and Composition from the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami, where she studies composition with Charles Norman Mason and violin with Scott Flavin.
Since beginning her studies at the Frost School in August 2019, Wales participated in a composition master class with Melinda Wagner, and later performed Wagner’s Romanze With Faux Variations (Piano Trio No. 2), receiving a review from the South Florida Classical Review stating “[...] Kira Wales’ singing violin sonority encompassed the work’s passionate moods.” Wales was also selected as the undergraduate division winner of the 2019 Ensemble Ibis composition competition for her work Sonnet to Liberty for soprano and chamber ensemble. She has also worked with musicians such as Transient Canvas, loadbang, and the Beo String Quartet. In recent months, she has been commissioned to write works for James Madison University’s Invicta Sax Quartet, violist Benjamin Freedman, violinist Mistylayne Drake, and percussionist Katherine Fortunato.
Being a violinist for more than a decade before picking up composition, Wales’ music is strongly influenced and informed by her experiences as a performer. Outside of music, Wales is pursuing a double major in psychology at the University of Miami, driven by her passion for science and mental health advocacy. She currently works as an Undergraduate Research Assistant in UM's Program for Anxiety, Stress, and OCD. Wales has been a member of UM's Society of Composers, Inc., chapter since the fall of 2019, and is currently serving as the chapter's Secretary for the 2021-2022 academic year. She has experience teaching both violin and music theory, and currently teaches underserved youth in the Miami-Dade area through the Frost School of Music's Donna E. Shalala MusicReach program.