poster for concert by Mao Omura and Erika TazawaWORKS BY FRENCH AND JAPANESE COMPOSERS

The University at Albany Department of Music is pleased to present violinist Mao Omura and pianist Erika Tazawa on Wednesday, October 17, 2012 at 7:30pm at the UAlbany Performing Arts Center on the uptown campus.

Entitled Emerging Colors, the program to be performed by these guest artistsisan exploration of the French-Japanese connection in chamber music and will include works by Claude Debussy, Toru Takemitsu, Olivier Messiaen, Sadao Bekku, Lili Boulanger and Sonoh Terauchi.  In selecting the pieces for the program, the artists chose works for their significance as examples of merging cultures.  The three Japanese composers whose works will be performed all had close connections to and were deeply influenced by French music.

A native of Japan, Mao Omura started playing violin at the age of three and since has performed in Japan, Europe and the United States. In 2008, she earned a Master’s degree in Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music where she studied with Mikhail Kopelman. While there, Omura won the school concerto competition and performed with the Eastman School Symphony Orchestra.  After graduating, Omura became a member of the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra’s first violin section. She has also played with the New World Symphony, Binghamton Philharmonic and Rochester Lyric Opera as a substitute violinist. Omura has performed as a soloist with such orchestras as Japan Philharmonic Orchestra and Tokyo Metropolitan Orchestra. 

Since Erika Tazawa’s arrival to the U.S. in 2004, she has been sought after as a soloist and chamber musician across the country.  Tazawa has appeared in the Classical Pianists of the Future concert series in both 2009 and 2010 and, in the latter year, she was selected to join the Chopin Bicentennial celebration tour in the northeastern U.S. Her performances have been featured in radio programs such as NPR’s Performance Today, BBC London and WSKG New York. Frequent engagements include chamber recital appearances with members of symphony orchestras worldwide and as a duo with saxophonist Michael Mortarotti. Tazawa has premiered both solo and chamber works by such contemporary composers as Gregory Wanamaker, Williams Susman, Paul Siskind, Joseph Lyszczarz and David Liptak.

Both artists hold top prizes in numerous competitions -- Omura in the International String Festival Concerto Competition, Eastman Concerto Competition and Toshiya Eto Violin Concerto Competition and Tazawa in the Chopin Society of Thousand Islands International Competition, Empire State Piano Competition, Julia Crane Concerto Competition, Tochigi Piano Competition and PTNA Japan National Piano Competition.

Tickets are $10 for the general public and $5 for students, seniors & UAlbany faculty/staff and may be purchased through the Performing Arts Center Box Office.  For further information, contact the Box Office at (518) 442-3997.