Ken-Ichiro Kobayashi is a Japanese conductor and composer.
Born in Iwaki, Fukushima, Kobayashi's father was a high school teacher, mother was a primary school teacher. Kobayashi started composing music at the age of 11. He attended the Tokyo University of the Arts, where he studied composition and conducting under Mareo Ishiketa, Kazuo Yamada, and Akeo Watanabe.
Kobayashi had won the 1st prize and the special award at the International Conductors Competition on Hungarian television in 1974. He has led orchestras in Germany, Austria, Britain, and Netherlands. Kobayashi has been resident conductor of the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra and of the Kyoto Symphony Orchestra. With the Japan Philharmonic Orchestra, he served as principal conductor, chief conductor, and music director. Kobayashi has served as principal guest conductor of the Kansai Philharmonic Orchestra and the Kyusyu Symphony Orchestra. With the Nagoya Philharmonic Orchestra, he was general music director from 1998 to 2001, music director from 2001 to 2003, is serving the conductor laureate since 2003.