When Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi won the International Casals Competition in Budapest in 1963, the press called him a musician “whose discovery is comparable to that of David Oistrakh in the Brussels Competition in the 1930s”. Born in Tokyo, Mr. Tsutsumi’s early training with Hideo Saito led him to his debut at the young age of 12 with the Tokyo Philharmonic, performing the Saint-Saëns Concerto. Appearances with Japan’s leading orchestras followed, as did several major prizes, including the Japan’s most prestigious; the Mainichi (Japan) Music Competition.
Audiences have since heard Mr. Tsutsmi’s solo appearances with the ORTF in Paris, the Berlin Radio Symphony, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic, London Symphony, London Philharmonia, the Czech and Royal Liverpool Philharmonics, and many others. He has appeared with many great conductors and orchestras such as Seiji Ozawa and the Toho Gakuen Orchestra at the United Nations; at Avery Fisher Hall with the NHK Symphony.
He taught at the University of Illinois before joining the faculty of Indiana University as Professor of Music in the fall of 1988. He was frequently invited to conduct master classes in places like the Talent Education Institute (Japan), Orford Arts Centre (Canada), Lyon Conservatoire (France), Banff Centre (Canada) and Holland Music Sessions (The Netherlands). He has also been invited as a jury member of prestigious international music competitions such as the Grand Prix Emanuel Feuermann, ARD in Munich, M. Rostropovich in Paris, CBC in Ottawa and the Osaka International Competition.
In 2009, he was awarded Japan’s Medal with Purple Ribbon, the highest honor in Japan. He is also a member of the Japan Art Academy since December 2009.
Mr. Tsutsumi has various CD releases with Sony and Meister Music. He is also known as a recipient of the Suntory Award for his contribution to music in Japan and was presented the National Academy of Arts Prize in music by the Emperor. In 1997, he was elected the first President of Japan Cello Society, and in 2000 was elected Music Director of Kirishima International Music Festival and Director General of Suntory Foundation for Arts.
He was also elected the President of Suntory Hall in September 2007 and was the President of the Toho Gakuen School of Music for nine years. Now he is specially appointed professor at the Toho Gakuen School of Music (1976-) and has a visiting professorship at the Korea National University of Arts (2017-).