Yoko Sata Kothari, pianist
Born in Tokyo, Yoko Sata Kothari began her performing career by winning the Northern Japan Classical Piano Competition at the age of eight. She continued to collect top prizes in Japan, such as in the Machida Piano Competition and the Japan Young Pianist Award. Since moving to the United States, she has continued to earn awards for her performances, including second place in the Bartok-Kabalevsky-Prokofiev International Competition, the Kathleen McGowan Piano Scholarship Award, a prize for her outstanding Bartok performance in the Ibla Grand Prize International Competition in Italy, and was chosen as a finalist in the Simone Belsky International Piano Competition. In 2013, she won second place in the Bradshaw & Buono International Piano Competition in New York.
Ms. Kothari has inspired and captivated audiences on three continents. She has given numerous concert performances in Asia, which include televised broadcasts in China. Her series of performances in Italy was received with high recognition. Her achievement has also been recognized in the artistic community and has earned excellent reviews; Gyorgy Sandor, the world renowned Hungarian pianist, gave a high note on her performance and described it as “Excellent”, and rewarding her second place in the Bradshaw and Buono International Piano Competition, Cosmo Buono, chairman, stated “Ms. Kothari’s playing, both in terms of technical skill and artistry, reflects her intelligence, insight, and musicality.”
She has released 4 CD recordings: “Piano Works of J.S. Bach, Beethoven, and Liszt” (2002), “Ravel and Balakirev: French Impressionism and Russian Romanticism” (2006), “Fantasies – J.S. Bach and Chopin” (2010) and “Dances from France & Russia” (2014). All Music Guide wrote, “One aspect of Kothari’s playing that is appealing is her power; she has a strong, masculine approach that is refreshing in a piano market where delicacy and holding back is considered king. However, when sensitivity is called for, Kothari can deliver it without descending into bathos.” Her latest CD received a review by American Record Guide: “Ms. Kothari is both a sensitive and strong pianist…her performance of Lyapunov’s ‘Lesghinka’ is almost note-perfect and effective.”
As an active chamber performer aside from her solo career, Ms. Kothari has performed with the Boca String Quartet, as well as the Lotus Duo (a piano-violin duo), and currently is a member of the Trillium Piano Trio (piano, violin, and cello). Ms. Kothari holds a performing arts degree from the Kunitachi College of Music in Tokyo. Her teachers include Takako Maeda, Miwako Tsukada, as well as Dr. Roberta Rust and Phillip Evans at the Conservatory of Music at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida. In addition to performing, together with her husband, Dilip, a classical guitarist, Ms. Kothari teaches at her private studio in North Palm Beach, Florida.