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Meet Daniel Matsukawa

To hear Mr. Matsukawa play the bassoon, click here.
To listen to students interview Mr. Matsukawa, click here.

Daniel Matsukawa was appointed to the National Symphony Orchestra as principal bassoonist in 1997 by its music director, Leonard Slatkin. He was born in Argentina to Japanese parents and his family moved to New York City where he grew up from the age of 3. He began studying the bassoon at age 13. The following year, he won his first competition and was featured as a soloist performing the Mozart Bassoon Concerto with a professional orchestra in New York. He was a scholarship student of the Pre-College divisions of both the Juilliard School and the Manhatten School of Music, where he studied with Harold Goltzer and Alan Futterman, respectively. He went on to study at the Juilliard College with Mr. Goltzer for two years, then attended the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia where he was a pupil of Bernard Garfield. While a student, Mr. Matsukawa was the recipient of numerous awards including the Heckscher Foundation award, the Performing Arts Memorial Association award, the Albert E. Bernstein Scholarship, and a grant from the Presser Foundation. In 1987, he was the top prize winner of the McGraw Hill Concerto Competition and made his solo debut in Carnegie Hall at the age of 18. He was also featured in a Young Artist's Schowcase on a New York Classical radio station. Since then, he has appeared as a soloist on two more occasions in Carnegie Hall under the direction of Alexander Schneider and Otto Werner Mueller. In 1992, Mr. Matsukawa was critically acclaimed for his solo recital debut in Japan. He is also an active chamber musician and has performed at the Marlboro Music Festival for three summers. Participation in other festivals include Tanglewood, Aspen, Blossom, and the Pacific Music Festival. He is on the faculty at the University of Maryland and the National Orchestral Institute. Prior to his post with the National Symphony Orchestra, Mr. Matsukawa was principal bassoonist of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra and has served as acting principal with the Saint Louis Symphony and the Memphis Symphony Orchestra. Last May, he was asked to play principal with the New York Philharmonic for a subscription week where he performed and recorded Shostakovich's Symphony No. 7 under its Music Director, Kurt Masur.


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