Lisa Nakazono-Węgłowska

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Lisa Nakazono-Węgłowska (中園ヴェングォフスカ理沙 Nakazono Venguofusuka Risa?), born 15 February 1984, is a Japanese classically trained professional pianist. She is signed with the label Sony Music, and JESC (Japan-Exchange-Seminar-Concerts foundation, JESC Ongaku Bunka Shinkōkai) is her acting agency.[1]

Née Risa Nakazono, the Westernized "Lisa" spelling appeared on her first CD release.[2] She is married to a Polish diplomat, and since 2013 has styled herself "Lisa Nakazono-Węgłowska". She lives in Tokyo.


Born in Kanagawa, Japan in 1984, Lisa Nakazono started piano lessons at age four, and continued her training. In 2005, she applied for the "master class" program (piano division), sponsored by the Tokyo International Association of Artists (TIAA), and qualified with the top score, winning full scholarship to study at the Moscow Conservatory.[1][3]

In February 2008 she took first place in the 1st annual Elena Richter International Piano Competition held in Tokyo,[4][a] named in honor of the piano professor at the Moscow Conservatory. That same year, while still attending college at the Toho Gakuen School of Music (in Chōfu, Tokyo) she made her professional performance debut with the concert series "Lisa's twinkling classics,"[b] which was backed by the Yamaha Corporation.[1][5][6]

Around this time, as a senior in college, she signed with the record label (Aniplex/Sony Music) and in March 2009 when she graduated from Toho Gakuen, released her first CD entitled Chopin de Ghibli.[1] This recording features piano solo versions of songs and music from the animation of Hayao Miyazaki's Studio Ghibli, such as "Day of the River"[c] from Spirited Away and the title track from Ponyo, arranged in the style of Polish composer Frédéric Chopin.[2][7] She was selected to perform at the Yokosuka Arts Theatre in September 23, 2009 as par of the "Fresh Artists from Yokosuka" series,[8] and in the catch copy she was touted as a "richly expressive and attention-grabbing young female talent".[9]

In January 2010, her second album "Chopin de Hoshi ni negai o"' was released. It features a Chopanesque rendition of the title track "When You Wish upon a Star" as well as other tunes from Disney studio's animated works, musicals and entertainment films.[10][d] Her concert tour "Fantastic Chopin 2010" that year commemorated the 200th anniversary of the birth of Chopin. Also the anime series Occult Academy (世紀末オカルト学院 Seikimatsu Okaruto Gakuin?) had a run this year, for which she recorded as background music her performances of Liszt's "La Campanella" and Beethoven's Piano Sonata no. 21, "Waldstein".[11]

In 2011, she gave another commemorative tour, this time paying homage to the bicentennial of the other great Polish composer, Franz Liszt.[dubious ][12][e] She also co-participated in "Bravo! Piano 2011" tour across the Japan, alongside artists such as Ai Kawashima.[12][f]

In 2012, she gave a tour commemorating the 150th birthday anniversary of Debussy,[13][g] and took part in the Japanese music festival "7th Sendai Classic Festival 2012."[14]

From 2010~11, she wrote a series of essays/travelogue that ran in four issues of the Gokujō no piano magazine, published by Yamaha Music Media Corporation (ja).[15][h]

She has studied piano under Masashi Kawasome (川染雅嗣?), Kōji Shimoda (下田幸二?), and Koo Ryeong Park (朴久玲?), and received solfège training from Makoto Ishihara (石原真?).[1]


  • Chopin de GHIBLI (2009.03.18)
Music from the animation of Studio Ghibli, in Chopin-style arrangement.  
  • Chopin de Hoshi ni negai o (2010.01.27)
"When You Wish Upon A Star, in Chopin-style arrangement


Explanatory notes[edit]

  1. ^ A more complete listing of her award history at: Sony Music. "中園理沙:プロフィール". 
  2. ^ "Lisa's twinkling classics" (リサのきらめきクラシックス♪ Risa no kirameki kurasikkusu?)
  3. ^ "Day of the River" (あの日の川 Ano Hi no Kawa?)
  4. ^ For corresponding English titles to the tunes in this CD, see "discography" page on the artist's official website[11]
  5. ^ The 2011 Liszt commemorative tour was entitled "Graceful piano! A concert of adored classic tunes" (華麗なるピアノ!憧れの名曲コンサート Karei naru piano! Akogare no meikyoku konsāto?)
  6. ^ Other performers in the "Bravo! Piano 2011" tour: Kohshi Kishitja (ja), Erena Terakubo (ja), and Masahiro Sayama (ja). It was sponsored by J-WAVE and supported by House Foods Company.
  7. ^ 2012 tribute to Debussy entitled Welcome to the soirée musicale in Paris (パリの音楽会へようこそ! Pari no ongakukai e yōkoso!?)
  8. ^ The essay series were entitled Nakazono Risa no konsāto zenkoku tabi nikki - piano ga kureta deai tachi- (中園理沙のコンサート全国旅日記〜ピアノがくれた出逢いたち〜?) "Lisa Nakazono's national concert [tour] travelogue: the encounters that piano gave me"


  1. ^ a b c d e Nakazono, Lisa. "official webpage". 
  2. ^ a b Sony Music. "ショパンdeジブリ". 
  3. ^ JESC foundation. "Lisa Nakazono-Weglowska / Piano". 
  4. ^ TIAA, Lisa (2014). "エレーナ・リヒテル国際ピアノコンクール (Elena Richter International Piano Concours)". 
  5. ^ "TOPICS:中園理沙♪リサのきらめきクラシックス♪ 始動!". ショパン (Chopin) (ハンナ): 30–32. 2008-11-18. 
  6. ^ Yamaha (2008-09-28). "リサのきらめきクラシックスI". 
  7. ^ Itogakki Co., Ltd. (2009). "中園理沙 CD発売記念コンサート". 
  8. ^ "フレッシュ・アーティスツ from ヨコスカ シリーズ32中園理沙ピアノ・リサイタル". 2009. 
  9. ^ "フレッシュ・アーティスツfromヨコスカ『中園理沙ピアノ・リサイタル』本日よりチケット発売開始". 2009-06-02.  (blog). Announcement on the date of the start of ticket sales on 6/2/2006. Catch copy reads: 豊かな表現力で注目を集める若き才媛 (yutaka na hyōgenryoku de chūmoku wo atsumeru wakaki saien?)
  10. ^ Sony Music. "ショパン de 星に願いを". 
  11. ^ a b Nakazono, Lisa. "official webpage: discography". 
  12. ^ a b Nakazono, Lisa. "official webpage: concert 2011". 
  13. ^ Nakazono, Lisa. "official webpage: concert 2012". 
  14. ^ Sendai Cultural Foundation. "仙台クラシックフェステイバル (Sendai Classic[al] Festival/SENCLA)" (in Japanese). Retrieved April 2014. 
  15. ^ Nakazono, Lisa. "official webpage: media". 

External links[edit]