Akiko launched her career after winning numerous prizes in prestigious competitions including first prizes at the Yehudi Menuhin (2000), Viotti-Valsesia (2002) and Forval Scholarship Stradivarius Japan (2003). She was also a laureate of the Concours Reine Elisabeth (2001), Paganini (1999) and Szigeti Competition (2002).
Since then she has enjoyed performing with major orchestras such as the Weimar Staatskapelle, Belgian National Orchestra, Lille National Orchestra, Beethoven Academy Orchestra, London Mozart Players, London Chamber Orchestra, NHK Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, Polish Radio Amadeus Chamber Orchestra and Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra, collaborating with conductors including Hans Drewanz, George Alexander Albrecht, Shlomo Mintz, Saulus Sondeckis, James Judd, Paul Watkins, Matthias Bamert, Gilbert Varga, Christian Arming, Christopher Warren-Green and Yutaka Sado.
Akiko made her debut with Yehudi Menuhin and the Essen Philharmonic Orchestra at the UNICEF Gala Concert in Germany in 1998. In the same year, she was invited by Vanessa Redgrave, UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, to perform at the UN Headquarters in New York to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the “Universal Declaration of Human Rights” where she performed a Bach Partita.
She has performed throughout Europe, the United States, Central America, North Africa, the Middle East and Far East. Venues include Wigmore Hall, Cadogan Hall, Royal Albert Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Carnegie Hall, Konzerthaus Vienna, Tokyo Festival Hall, Tokyo Metropolitan Hall and Palais des Beaux-Arts Brussels.
Akiko sets great value in outreach activities and educational projects and has worked with the Red Cross, UNICEF and Live Music Now, as well as other institutions. She is one of the appointed artists of the Japan Foundation for Regional Art-Activities since 2006 and is a course leader of the Maiastra Chamber Music. Akiko also leads the Orpheus Sinfonia which supports the finest young musicians emerging from conservatoires across Britain. Every summer, Akiko coaches and plays chamber music with Yutaka Sado’s Super Kids Orchestra in Japan.
In July 2016, Akiko launched a new summer violin course MusicSpace at Fitzwilliam College, University of Cambridge, in partnership with Cambridge Summer Music. In demand as a soloist and chamber musician, Akiko is also invited as guest concertmaster by various orchestras such as the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Nederlands Symphonieorkest.
Born in Tokyo, Akiko moved to the UK when she was 12 to study at the Yehudi Menuhin School. Subsequently she studied with Dora Schwarzberg and Michael Frischenschlager at the University of Music and performing Arts in Vienna.
Akiko is a violin professor at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London and the Yehudi Menuhin School.
February 2017 ——