After graduating from the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts, pianist Aki Kuroda went on to further her studies in Italy with Bruno Mezzena, receiving a degree in twentieth-century piano music with distinction from the Accademia Musicale Pescarese. Aki performs extensively as a soloist and a chamber musician both in Japan and in Europe, especially in Italy.
She won first prizes in the 1993 French Music Competition and the 1997 Contemporary Music Competition. In 1995, she was awarded the Xavier Montsalvage Prize for Performance of Contemporary Piano Music in Spain. Besides the classical repertoire, Kuroda has performed pieces by many contemporary composers, such as Ligeti, Xenakis, Donatoni, Boulez, Campo, Mochizuki and Takemitsu. In 2003 she gave a brilliant performance in the Teatro Regio di Parma, playing Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition and a composition dedicated to her by Maurizio Pisati. She subsequently performed Michael Jarrell’s Modifications at the Ticino Musica Festival.
In 2004, Kuroda gave a wonderful performance of Schoenberg’s Kammersymphonie Op. 9 in its piano solo version in Tokyo and Osaka. At present Kuroda is working with renowned musicians such as the clarinettist Alessandro Carbonare and the Prometheus Quartet. She has devoted special attention to Astor Piazzolla’s works, to whom her first solo albums are dedicated (Japan Victor). Kuroda is acclaimed not only as a classical and contemporary music pianist, but also as a tango and jazz music performer.
Her videogame music recording Final Fantasy X. XIII, Piano Collection has been universally praised. In 2004, she released the album Tarkus and Pictures at an Exhibition, dedicated to the works of Keith Emerson. In 2008, she performed Sylvano Bussotti’s new composition The Poetic Keyboard at the Cagliari Spaziomusica Festival. Aki Kuroda’s 2014 disc ‘Firebird’, released by the Ordradek label, has also earned her considerable critical acclaim, receiving 5 stars from the BBC Music Magazine among various other distinctions.
Kuroda is also a member of the Tokyo Gen’On project and the commission of the Piano Teachers’ National Association of Japan (PTNA).