Jury members

Atsuko Okada

Atsuko Okada was born in Tokyo in 1954. After graduating from Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music(Currently – Tokyo University of the Arts )in 1976, she advanced to further graduate studies at the University and earned the Doctorate of Philosophy degree in Western Music of the recognition of recital and thesis on A. N. Scriabin. Ever since, she has built a career to became a widely respected pianist and music critic. Professor Okada is an internationally acclaimed Japan’s premier interpreter of Scriabin’s legacy. She has been invited to various festivals and conferences, including the music festival on Scriabin’s 125 birth anniversary(Moscow, 1997)and the 2nd International Congress commemorating Chopin’s 150th death anniversary(Warsaw, 1999, during which she held recitals and delivered lectures. Dr. Okada’s portfolio as a researcher/writer/editor includes such desired items as ‘Scriabin, the Complete Works for Piano’(Shunju-sha, Tokyo) and ‘A moment is of itself eternity – pianism at the end of the century’(Sakuhin-sha, Tokyo), a collection of awn critical essays.

Yasuo Shinozaki

Yasuo Shinozaki became chief conductor of the Shizuoka Symphony orchestra in September 2015 after serving as the orchestra’s music advisor. Shinozaki was born in Kyoto in 1968. At Toho Gakuen College he studied conducting with Nanao Yamamoto and Taijiro Iimori. After completing the upper-level course in the conducting department, he made his opera debut conducting “The Marriage of Figaro.” In 1993 he won the highest prize in the Antonio Pedrotti International Conducting Competition. He went on to train with Ilya Musin and Myung-Whun Chung at the Accademia Musicale Chigiana; Leopold Hager and Yuji Yuasa at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna; and Seiji Ozawa and Bernard Haitink in the Tanglewood Music Festival Seminar.

Gen Matsuyama

Gen Matsuyama studied piano at the Music University Cologne with Aloys Kontarsky and chamber music with the members of the Amadeus Quartet. Since his 1978 debut in Tokyo, he has performed numerous concert tours in Japan and other Asian countries, to Europe and the USA. He has been frequently invited as a pianist, juror and lecturer to international festivals, masterclasses and competitions. From 2000, he held a scholarship from the Cultural Exchange Program of the Japanese Ministry of Culture as a guest of the Humboldt-University in Berlin. During this time, he was a guest professor at the University of the Arts Berlin (UdK). Mr. Matsuyama's repertoire extends not only to the classical and romantic piano and chamber music, but also to works of the Western and Asian avant-garde. In 2010, he received the 28th Kenzo Nakajima Music Prize. Since 2004, he has been a member and representative of the Klangforum Berlin. Gen MATSUYAMA is professor at the Tokyo University of Music and the University of Yamagata.

Michal Sobkowiak

Born in an artistic family in Poland, Michal Sobkowiak made his TV debut on "Akademia muzyczna" series as the most talented young pianist at the age of ten. He has performed at major concert halls and music festivals across the country and abroad, including the prestigious National Philharmonic Hall in Warsaw. After graduated from Chopin Academy of Music (currently known as the Frederyk Chopin University of Music) in 1998, he further pursued his postgraduate study at the Zürich Conservatory. His former teachers include Andrzej Jasiński, Teresa Manasterska and Gabriela Weiss.

Masahiro Kawakami

Born in Hokkaido, Japan in 1965. Masahiro Kawakami graduated from the Tokyo College of Music and completed his studies at the Vienna Conservatory, Austria. He has made many recordings for NHK radio and television programs in Japan. He has released 7 CDs. Among his recordings, Piano Sonata B-flat minor of Mily Balakirev, Sonata No.5 and Etudes Op.42 by Scriabin, 7 Piano Sonatas of Nikolai Medtner, and numerous piano solo works and chamber music works by Nikolai Kapustin.

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