​I founded the Tokyo International Piano Association (TIPA) with a dream of creating a Festival Academy where children, students and artists would all be able to come together to study, perform, enjoy concerts and sharing in the joy of music-making while also exploring culture, arts, cuisine and scenery.

In 2016 TIPA launched our first ‘Tokyo International Piano Festival’, offering an inspiring five-day piano academy in Kyoto, Osaka, Shiga, Yokohama and Tokyo with the highlight of a grand gala recital with world-class concert pianist Peter Jablonski at the Kioi Hall in Tokyo. This successful event led to the perfect opportunity and privilege of hosting the festival in collaboration with Serbia’s most popular piano duo – ‘LP DUO’ at the Kolarac Hall and the Old Palace in Belgrade. In 2019, TIPA has co-directed the Montecatini Piano Festival in the historical opera town of Montecatini Terme in Italy. Our celebrity artists included Sofya Gulyak (described as a Rach Star Pianist by The Washington Post), Emanuel Salvador (Concertmaster of the Baltic Neopolis Orchestra) and Martin Tillman (EMMY nominated Hollywood film composer). Our wonderful resident artists offered an attractive series of individual lessons, masterclasses and chamber music coaching sessions which allowed an audience to enjoy both an outstanding concert and a post-concert cocktail reception – all offered in beautiful Tuscan style. It is especially noteworthy that, during the festival, participants are given the opportunity to perform in the concert hall on a superb Steinway concert grand piano, participate in chamber music and also take part in a competition. The winners’ prizes offer young talented artists a concert opportunity as an important steppingstone towards a professional concert career. Since 2018, TIPA has been the official Japanese management for the Royal College of Music (RCM) and we have so far co-presented an annual RCM Audition, concert and masterclass by Director Prof. Colin Lawson and Head of Keyboard Prof. Vanessa Latarche at the Steinway Hall in Tokyo.

TIPA now operates our festival in three countries; Japan, Italy and Serbia. In 2020, we have launched our new digital platform of TIPA Live Show, featuring violin superstar Vasko Vassilev, the Concertmaster of the Royal Opera House in London and the Montecatini International Piano Competition (Online Edition) which attracted 110 talented pianists from over 38 countries. 

In 2022, I was appointed the Artistic Director by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Serbia to celebrate the 140th Anniversary of the Diplomatic Friendship between Japan and Serbia. I’ll be co-directing the International Piano Festival in Serbia ‘Aisa & Friends’ in collaboration with Hanami Association, which event will take place at the Belgrade Philharmonie, the Kolarac Hall in Belgarde and the Millennium Centre in Vršac from 23rd to 31st October. 

I hope our visiting musicians and participants will consider our festival & competition a home in which they can feel united in a shared journey of discovery. I look forward to welcoming many of you to our worldwide musical odyssey!

Aisa Ijiri