Unique in the classical music world due to its dedication to works for violin and cello ensemble, Duo-B is quickly earning praise for their passionate musical commitment, creative style and original programming. The ensemble began in 2009 with the chance meeting of a Japanese violinist (Hirono Sugimoto) and an American cellist (Philip Borter) in Germany at the Hochschule fur Musik-Freiburg. Their fascination with travel, innovative styles of music-making, and each other soon led them down creative and unexpected paths that later resulted in the forming of Duo-B, while still graduate students as the Eastman School of Music.
In addition to performing rarely heard classical masterpieces alongside lesser-known works, a great emphasis is placed on the communicative power and remarkable intimacy found in the string duo. The couple has since dedicated much of their performing careers to promoting the wealth of music for violin and cello duo.
As winners of numerous awards, they have performed across three continents including landmark performances in Kodak Hall at the Eastman Theater, the Kennedy Center in Washington D. C., the University der Kunst in Berlin and Minatomirai Hall in Yokohama. Dr. Borter is currently a member of the music faculty of Luther College. While dedicating their musical lives to the string duo, Philip and Hirono cherish being full-time parents and sharing as many musical adventures as possible with their three young sons: Jude, Joseph, and Matthew.