World-renowned London-based pianist Noriko Ogawa wowed her audience in a recent mini-concert hosted by Japan Ambassador Koji Haneda at his residence.
Among those in attendance were Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. and his wife Louie Locsin.
Ogawa’s characteristic eloquence and mastery was showcased in her performance of a curated selection of famous classics: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Turkish March,” Frederic Chopin’s “Waltz Op. 18,” Robert Schumann’s “Traumerei (from Kinderszenen),” Franz Liszt’s “La Campanella,” Toru Takemitsu’s “Rain Tree Sketch,” Edward Elgar’s “Salut d’Amour,” George Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue,” and an encore performance of Erik Satie’s “Je Te Veux.”
A friend of Ambassador Haneda for over two decades, Ogawa has an illustrious career that includes multiple performances with the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra of Moscow Radio, Nagoya Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, and the BBC Concert Orchestra, among many others. Apart from being an accomplished musician, Ogawa is also a radio and television presenter for programs aired on NHK, Nippon Television and BBC Worldwide, most notably in BBC3’s coverage of the Leeds Piano Competition.
A regular judge in competitions, she is presently the jury chair of the prestigious Hamamatsu International Piano Competition.
Ogawa is an advocate for children with autism. In 2014, she was appointed cultural ambassador of the United Kingdom’s National Autistic Society in recognition of her tireless dedication to Jamie’s Concerts, a project that caters to families of children with autism.
Upon the invitation of maestro Yoshikazu Fukumura, Ogawa has shared her brilliance by playing Sergei Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto no. 3 as guest soloist for the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra’s 37th season opening concert held at the Cultural Center of the Philippines Main Theater.—CONTRIBUTED