Kazuki Sawa graduated from the Tokyo Geidai (Tokyo University of the Arts) with a Master of Arts degree and the Premier Prix 'Ataka Award', before studying with György Pauk and Béla Katona in London. He has won a number of prizes at international competitions with his pianist wife, Emiko Tadenuma, as well as the Ysaÿe Medal from the Ysaÿe Foundation of Belgium, and a Gold Medal at the 1979 Bordeaux Festival.
In 1984-88 he worked in Japan before returning later to study on a research fellowship at the Royal Academy of Music with members of the Amadeus Quartet, who inspired him to form the Sawa Quartet. In 2000/01 it performed the Beethoven string quartet cycle to celebrate its 10th anniversary.
Kazuki Sawa has been invited to various music festivals and to be a jury member of international competitions such as the Tibor Varga (Sion), the Long-Thibaud, the London String Quartet and the RNCM Manchester. He is currently the president of the Tokyo Geidai, an honorary professor of the RAM and a fellow of the RNCM. Since 1996 he has extended his career as a conductor, initially with the Hibiki Strings, Tokyo Strings and more recently with the Tokyo and Japan Philharmonic orchestras. As a violist, he has played with internationally-acclaimed artists such as members of the Amadeus Quartet, Henschel Quartet, Kuss Quartet and Gustav Mahler Quartet.
Kazuki Sawa plays on a 1732 Joseph Guarnerius del Gesu violin known as the 'Arkwright'. He has been a regular guest at LDSM since 2001.
*See the panel on the right for details of his duo recital and ensemble directing in the 2016 LDSM festival.