Rieko Tsuchida, age 17, was born in Japan and began her piano studies at age 3 with Ankie Foell in Madison, Wisconsin. In 1999 Rieko relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area, where she is currently a scholarship student of John McCarthy in the Preparatory Division at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Rieko was the youngest of eight pianists selected from around the world to participate in the prestigious Verbier Festival 2011 in Switzerland last summer, where she worked with pianists Stephen Kovacevich and Ferenc Rados and received master classes with artists such as Gabor Takács-Nagy, Masaaki Suzuki, Lera Auerbach, and Lawrence Power. Rieko has also studied with Andre Watts, Klaus Hellwig and Boris Slutsky during the summer and performed in a master class for Lang Lang.

Rieko gave her first public performance at the age of 3, and has since performed at international venues as a soloist, chamber musician and Principal Keyboardist of the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra. In 2011 she made her professional debut with the California Symphony at a sold out concert, performing the Tchaikovsky 1st Piano Concerto with Belgian conductor Ronald Zollman. In 2009 she made her Carnegie Hall debut as first prize winner of the Bradshaw and Buono International Piano Competition, and that same year performed with the El Camino Youth Symphony Orchestra as grand prize winner of the ECYS Concerto Competition.

In 2010 she performed with the Rochester Philharmonic in New York and presented recitals throughout the Netherlands as the youngest participant of The International Holland Music Sessions. Rieko has appeared in a joint program with opera stars Placido Domingo at the San Francisco Museum of the Modern Art and with Dame Kiri Te Kanawa and Frederica Von Stade at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music's "Annual Gala Concert." Additionally Rieko has performed to a capacity audience at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco at the invitation of the Smuin Ballet, and on the nationally broadcast radio show "From the Top" at Herbst Theatre.

Rieko has won numerous awards in recent years. In 2011 she won the Avanti Award, a generous grant awarded to artists of any age pursuing a career in the visual or performing arts. She was also recently named a finalist for the Youngarts program of the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts. As one of 150 finalists selected out of 5,000 applicants she participated in Youngarts week in Miami, Florida, working with renowned artists and performing at the New World Center. She was also one of five pianists in the U.S. nominated as a U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts through the Youngarts program. Notable prizes include first prizes in the San Francisco Young Pianists’ Competition 2011, the 2010 California Youth Symphony Concerto Competition, 2009 Bradshaw and Buono International Piano Competition, the 2009 Ross McKee Piano Competition, the 2009 MTAC State Solo Competition, the 2009 El Camino Symphony Concerto Competition and the 2008 KDFC Classical Star Search, for which Lang Lang was a guest judge. Rieko also won 3rd prize in the International Institute for Young Musicians’ International Piano Competition (2009), and first prize in the San Francisco Chopin Piano Competition (2005). In 2003 Rieko was the youngest prizewinner in the Chopin International Piano Competition in Asia.

Recently she was invited to participate in the Oxford Philomusica International Piano Festival and Summer Academy, where she will receive masterclasses with artists such as Menahem Pressler and Sergei Babayan. Rieko is currently a senior at Tamalpais High School in Mill Valley. In the fall she will continue her studies at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, studying with Boris Slutsky.


©2010 Rieko Tsuchida, Riekotsuchida.com, Piano Sisters  Piano Sisters™, pianosisters™