Kimo Smith, organist and collaborative pianist, began music studies in his home state of Hawaii at age four. Following his graduation from Hawaiian Mission Academy, he attended the University of Hawaii, La Sierra University, the University of Southern California, and the University of California, Los Angeles. A student of Ladd Thomas at USC, he completed his Bachelor and Master degrees, magna cum laude, in organ performance. He was selected to receive the Organ Department Outstanding Achievement Award on both occasions.
He completed his doctoral studies at UCLA in organ performance as a student of Thomas Harmon. Dr. Smith is a past winner of several competitions sponsored by the American Guild of Organists and Music Teachers National Association. Dr. Smith is currently Associate Professor of Music at La Sierra University and past chair of the Department of Music. He is an active recitalist, performing locally, nationally, and abroad. In April of 2013, he premiered “Postludio”, a new work for organ by Los Angeles composer Ariel Quintana on a recital in Vienna, Austria.
He has appeared as a guest artist with several Southern California orchestras and choral ensembles, including the Glendale Symphony, Riverside County Philharmonic Orchestra, San Bernardino Symphony, Redlands Symphony Orchestra, William Hall Chorale, Los Robles Master Chorale, Angeles Chorale, and Los Angeles Master Chorale. He is featured organist on a 2010 recording of the Los Angeles Master Chorale performing the choral works of New York composer, Nico Muhly. This was the first recording of the LAMC in Walt Disney Concert Hall, and their first for the world-renowned Decca label. He was invited to perform two of Muhly’s compositions with the LAMC at the opening concert of their 2012-2013 season.
Dr. Smith has served as organist in various churches since the age of twelve and is currently the organist at the First Presbyterian Church of Hollywood and the University Church of Seventh-day Adventists in Loma Linda. His professional music activities also include a great deal of collaborative piano performance which has taken him throughout the United States, Europe, South America, and Asia with touring groups and solo artists. Dr. Smith and his wife, Cheryl, also a professional musician, reside in Loma Linda, California. They have three children and three grandchildren.