Japanese pianist Rie Tanaka started playing piano at the age three. By the age of ten, she had won the first place at the Muse Daito Piano Festival in Osaka and has been active in the competition scene ever since. Tanaka was a prize winner of the 8th Rosenstock International Piano Competition, Kyoto Piano Concours and Osaka College of Music Competition. Tanaka moved to the US in 2008 and has since been named the winner of numerous competitions. She came in first for the West Central MTNA Young Artist Competition 2016, Thursday Musical Young Artist Scholarship Competition 2015, the Schubert Club Scholarship Competition 2014, Mechelke Piano Award 2014, the 17th Annual Masters Concerto and Aria Competition at the Kenwood Symphony Orchestra 2014, and the Wisconsin State MTNA Young Artist Competition 2011. Tanaka participated in the 17th Chautauqua International Piano Competition in New York, where she was a finalist, and was awarded “Best Performance of Commissioned Piece.”
As an active soloist and a collaborative pianist, Rie frequently performs in the Twin Cities and Central Wisconsin. She has appeared in venues such as NHK Osaka hall, Phoenix hall in Osaka, Japan, and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra center. Tanaka received her Bachelor of Music from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point where she studied under Raffi Besalyan. She was chosen as the winner of the Outstanding Music Major Award 2013 for her excellence in performance and academia. She received a Master’s degree in Piano Performance at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities and is currently pursuing the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University under the guidance of Alexander Braginsky. Rie also serves as Teaching Assistant of group piano courses for both music majors and non-music majors as well as applied piano lessons for music majors.