School of Music

Yoshiko Arahata


A sensitive and versatile pianist in styles ranging from Baroque to Contemporary, Yoshiko Arahata maintains a multifaceted musical career across the United States, Europe, and Asia. Top prize winner of national and international competitions including the Bradshaw & Buono International Competition and the Los Angeles International Liszt Competition, Arahata has had solo performances at the Amalfi International Piano Festival (Italy), Gijon International Piano Festival (Spain), International Piano Academy Moulin d’Andé (France), Ritos Project (Greece), AmiCa Associazione musicale internazionale de Calatinoin in Sicily (Italy), Preston Bradley Hall (Chicago), Roppongi Concert Hall (Japan), and Hong Kong Cultural Centre (Hong Kong). She has performed as a soloist with traditional orchestras as well as contemporary ensembles featuring living composers Wolfgang Rihm, Steve Reich, and Aaron Jay Kernis.

A sought-after collaborative and chamber musician, Arahata has performed with numerous instrumentalists and vocalists, including the renowned violinist Charles Castleman at the Quartet Program and musicians from Toronto Symphony Orchestra and Rochester Philharmonic. Highlights from her chamber music engagements include performances at the Garth Newel Music Center Chamber Music Festival, Music Teachers Association of California International Chamber Music Series, and Sunset Concert Series. As a founding member of Elgin trio, she has performed and taught around Texas as an Ensemble-in-Residence of Music Bus Tour. Arahata has also appeared on several radio broadcasts including k-Mozart 105.1FM, k-USC 91.5 FM, and Live from Hochstein WXXI-FM 91.5. As a winner of the Luminarts Foundation Grant, Arahata recently presented "Music after 2000" recital tour for piano-percussion duo with percussionist Joshua Graham in the greater Chicago area. Moreover, she has significant experiences in a variety of styles including historical performance practice, jazz, musical theater, dance, cabaret.

Dedicated to paving the new music path, Arahata actively performs contemporary music and improvises and composes in a variety of styles and contexts. Most recently, she presented her lecture on “Pedagogical Methods to Improvise for Classically Trained Musicians through Variations” at the 2019 International Society for Improvised Music conference. She also composed for choreography by the University of Rochester dance faculty Mariah Steele for the dance show “S.E.E.D.,” and they performed their new dance-composition collaboration “Time to Change” at the 2019 Rochester KeyBank Fringe Festival. Continuously seeking artistic growth and ways to connect with her audience, Arahata has actively performed in diverse musical and interdisciplinary collaborations in settings such as schools, hospitals, and a prison.

Equally committed to education, Arahata has taught non-majors and collegiate pianists at Northwestern University, University of Rochester, and the Eastman School of Music, where her teaching was recognized with the Excellence in Teaching Assistant Award. In addition, Arahata served as a studio and class piano instructor at the Eastman Community Music School for five years and maintained a full studio for both collegiate and community divisions. She has also been a piano faculty member at the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Michigan, and in master classes at various colleges and piano festivals in the US, most recently at the 2019 Texas State International Piano Festival. Arahata has held piano, collaborative piano, and vocal coach faculty positions at Nazareth College, University of Rochester, SUNY Geneseo, Hochstein School of Music and serves on the improvisation committee for the National Conference of Keyboard Pedagogy.

Arahata holds degrees in Piano Performance at the Eastman School of Music (B.M., D.M.A.) and Northwestern University (M.M.) under the guidance and mentorship of Barry Snyder, Alan Chow, Enrico Elisi, and Dariusz Terefenko. She also has a degree in Brain and Cognitive Sciences (B.S.) and Take Five Scholar Certificate on her research topic “Health and Community: Influence of Society on Individual Psyche” from the University of Rochester. Her multicultural upbringing in Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Hong Kong has fostered her love of traveling and photography.

School of Music Responsibilities

  • Class Piano
  • Collaborative Pianist


  • Eastman School of Music  D.M.A.
  • Northwestern University M.M.
  • Eastman School of Music B.M.