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Sawako Hyodo Jazz pianist / Composer / Arranger

Winner of 11 reputable awards including the title for international songwriting awards in the jazz category, Sawako is highly regarded for her original compositions and has released 8 albums as a lead artist. Rooted in authentic jazz, her energetic yet melodious songs captivate listeners and audiences, resonating gently and comfortably, while evoking nostalgic scenes and memories. Her albums have successfully made it in the top tiers of music charts on iTunes Store and Apple Store.

Sawako began playing classical piano at the age of 5. During studying at Musashino Academia Musicae for 4 years and Tokyo Gakugei University for 2 years, she was inspired by the Jazz performance and studied Jazz under Bruce Barth in New York and had collaborative sessions with renowned musicians at local music clubs. Upon finishing graduate school, she began to perform professionally, followed by a record debut with the album “Brand New Melody” in 2008. Sawako is highly regarded for her original compositions and has released 8 albums as a lead artist. Apart from piano solos and piano trios, she also engages in arranging for string and winds instruments, showcasing her distinct musical perspective.

The track ‘Nostalgic Night’ from the 3rd album “My Wish” (2011), earned the second prize in the jazz category at the ‘John Lennon Songwriting Contest.’ With the song ‘Blue Flame’ from the 5th album and first music video “Naturally” (2013), Sawako became the first ever Japanese musician to receive the Lennon Award (grand prize of the year) in the jazz category at the ‘2013 John Lennon Songwriting Contest.’ Throughout her musical career, she has received a total of 11 international composition awards.

Her 7th album, “Beyond the Light” (2020), appeared in top positions on international charts on iTunes and Apple store: No.1 in Thailand, No.5 in Macau, No.7 in Singapore, No.12 in Japan, No.13 in Panama, No.14 in Armenia, No.19 in Hungary, and No.20 in South Korea. In August 2023, Sawako celebrated her 15th anniversary of her album debut with a live performance at ‘Marunouchi Cotton Club,’ a sister venue of Blue Note Tokyo.

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