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Toru Minegishi

Toru Minegishi Instruments: Piano, Drum Kit
Joined Nintendo: 1999
Company Role: Composer, Sound Effects Designer
Game Works: Twilight Princess, Phantom Hourglass, Wind Waker


Note: This biography was written exclusively for Square Enix Music Online by Chris and is under copyright.

Toru Minegishi has been a composer at Nintendo Entertainment Analysis and Development since 1999. Even though he has yet to produce a solo score, the classically-trained Minegishi has contributed to all major Zelda titles since Majora's Mask and is now the lead composer for the series. He made his debut at the company when he teamed up with Kenta Nagata, his long-term collaborator, and Hajime Wakai to score Pokémon Stadium. He subsequently assisted Koji Kondo by producing three battle themes for Majora's Mask; he made a big impact with rasping brass melodies and thunderous percussion in a series where battle music is often regarded unremarkable. He then produced several tracks for Mario Artist: Talent Studio, including an old-school piece featured in the compilation 'Luigi B-Side Music'.

In 2001, Minegishi produced the indoor music for Animal Crossing under direction by Kazumi Totaka, among them many of the 'K.K' tunes. His music was catchy while subdued and monotony was avoided through the music regularly changing with the amount of time the game is played. After producing sound effects for Super Mario Sunshine, Minegishi subsequently took a large role on the GameCube's The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. He and Minegishi collaborated to produce a rustic and nautical sound for the game's central themes. He also produced many of the dungeon, battle, and event themes with Wakai, all of which were fitting if not always worthy of stand-alone listening. He subsequently took a break from composing to produce sound effects for Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour, Mario Pinball Land, and Mario Superstar Baseball, helping to preserve the series' characteristic sounds.

In the last few years, several high-profile scores featuring Minegishi have been released. With Asuka Ota, he scored the DS' Yoshi Touch & Go, mixing series arrangements with light-hearted new compositions. He subsequently led the musical production of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, joined by Kondo and Ota. While the game's music was compressed to meet memory restrictions of its consoles, it was nevertheless the largest Zelda score to date, mixing memorable setting themes, series' arrangements, and dungeon, event, and battle music. It exuded a more melancholic and Eastern European flavour than previous scores in the series but still maintained the sound Kondo had established for the series. In a smaller production, he scored The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass with Nagata, mixing new compositions with plenty of arrangements from The Wind Waker to accompany the series' return to the seas.

List of Game Projects

Year Game / Role Console
1999 Pokémon Stadium
Composition with Hajime Wakai, Kenta Nagata
Nintendo 64
2000 The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask
Composition with Koji Kondo
Nintendo 64
2000 Mario Artist: Talent Studio (Nintendo EAD)
Composition with Kazumi Totaka, Kenta Nagata
Nintendo 64DD
2001 Animal Crossing / Animal Forest e+
Composition with Kazumi Totaka, Kenta Nagata, Shinobu Tanaka
Nintendo 64
2002 Super Mario Sunshine
Sound Effects
2002 The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
Composition with Kenta Nagata, Hajime Wakai, Koji Kondo
2003 Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour / Mario Golf: Family Tour
Sound Effects
2004 Mario Pinball Land
Sound Effects
Game Boy Advance
2005 Mario Superstar Baseball
Sound Effects
2005 Yoshi Touch & Go
Composition with Kazumi Totaka, Asuka Ota
2006 The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
Composition with Asuka Ota, Koji Kondo
2007 The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass
Composition with Toru Minegishi, Koji Kondo
2008 Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Composition with many others

List of Covered Albums

Album Title Catalog No.
Animal Forest Totakeke Music EGCH-10016
Animal Forest Totakeke Music 2 EGCH-10017
Nintendo Sound History Series - Zelda the Music SCDC-00395
Nintendo Sound Selection Vol. 1: Peach Healing Music CN-P004
Nintendo Sound Selection Vol. 2: Koopa Loud Music CN-P018
Nintendo Sound Selection Vol. 3: Luigi B-Side Music CN-P020
Pokémon Gotta Catch the Sound Original Soundtrack 3591666
Touch! Generations Soundtrack Promotional
Zelda Majora's Mask Original Soundtrack, The Legend of PICA-2006
Zelda Sound Collection, The Legend of Promotional
Zelda The Wind Waker Original Soundtrack, The Legend of SCDC-00250/1
Zelda Twilight Princess Official Soundtrack, The Legend of (Nintendo Power) Promotional
Zelda Twilight Princess Official Soundtrack, The Legend of (Sword and Shield) Promotional
Zelda Twilight Princess Sound & Visual CD, The Legend of (Nintendo Dream) Promotional