October 8, 2016
The 2016-2017 Season kicks off as we explore the crazy French valse of Ravel and take a journey to the countryside with some exciting folk tunes by Prokofiev and Bartók. Joining this program is one of the top 6th finalists of the 2013Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, Tomoki Sakata performing Sergei Prokofiev’s brilliant Piano Concerto No. 3.
MAURICE RAVEL La valse, poème chorégraphique
SERGEI PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 3
BÉLA BARTÓK Concerto for Orchestra
Japanese pianist Tomoki Sakata “demonstrated virtuosity, considerable color and expressivity” (Dallas
Morning News) during the 2013 Cliburn Competition, earning him a place among the top six finalists. Just 21
years old, he is building a reputation for a “youthful overabundance of talent” that creates “its own visceral
excitement” (Theater Jones).
Also a prizewinner at various competitions throughout Asia and Europe, Mr. Sakata has appeared in concert
in Osaka, Tokyo, and Yokohama as well as in Geneva, Lugano, Paris, Prague, Utrecht, and Moscow for the twelfth International Festival “Musical Kremlin” at the invitation of Nikolai Petrov. He has performed as soloist with the Fort Worth Symphony, Youngstown, Hamamatsu Symphony, Lublin Philharmonic, and Tokyo City Philharmonic Orchestras, working with such conductors as Leonard Slatkin, Randall Craig Fleisher, and Hikotaro Yazaki. Octavia Records released Mr. Sakata’s debut disc in spring 2015, featuring works by Liszt, Scriabin, Debussy, Chopin, and Rachmaninov. A sci-fi and anime fan, he has also recorded the soundtrack for the popular Japanese manga series “Your Life in April.”
Born in Nagoya, Mr. Sakata began piano lessons at the age of 5 and began improvising and composing at age 6. He currently splits his time between Japan, Italy, and Germany, studying with Hideto Nishikawa at the Tokyo University of Fine Arts and Music since 2012; William Grant Naboré at the International Piano Academy Lake Como since 2011; and Arie Vardi in Hannover since 2014.