Brussels Philharmonic | Akiko Suwanai, violin

Akiko Suwanai, violin

Akiko Suwanai, a tall, imposing violinist of striking stage presence, raised her bow for a sombre, intense descent of notes at the start: this was big-boned, noble playing, with its rhythmic life taut and rigorous.
The Times

Praised by The Times for her ​“noble playing, with its rhythmic life, taut and rigorous,” Japanese violinist Akiko Suwanai was the youngest ever winner of the International Tchaikovsky Competition in 1990. Since then she has enjoyed a flourishing international career and appears regularly with celebrated maestros and foremost orchestras across the globe.

In 2019/20, Akiko Suwanai returns to Washington’s National Symphony Orchestra for a series of concerts with its music director Gianandrea Noseda both at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C and on tour in Japan. Other highlights of the season include debuts with Camerata Salzburg at the Enescu Festival in Bucharest, as well as with Sydney Symphony Orchestra and Vladimir Ashkenazy, Brussels Philharmonic and Jun Märkl, and New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and Andrey Boreyko.

An extremely keen chamber musician, Akiko Suwanai enjoys fruitful and longstanding collaborations with several artistic partners. In 2019/20 she tours Japan with Nicholas Angelich presenting a brand-new all-Beethoven programme commemorating composer’s 250th anniversary. She also returns for recitals in China, where she appears at Guangzhou Opera House, as well as in Shanghai Concert Hall with Markus Groh. Prestigious Stresa Festival in Italy will see Akiko Suwanai in two solo recitals juxtaposing music by J.S. Bach and 20th century composers. Most recently, Akiko Suwanai has been invited to the Martha Argerich Festival in Hamburg and Leif Ove Andsnes’ Festival in Rosendal, Norway.

Universally acclaimed for her performances of key violin repertoire works, Akiko Suwanai is also widely recognised for her master interpretations of lesser-performed works and passion for new music. In 2007, she premiered Peter Eötvös’ violin concerto Seven at Lucerne Festival under Pierre Boulez, and in the following year she took this work to the BBC Proms where she appeared alongside Susanna Mälkki and Philharmonia Orchestra. She also gave Japanese premieres to important new works such as violin concertos by James MacMillan and Esa-Pekka Salonen.