• Principal Guest Conductor

    The Mariinsky Theatre, Primorsky Stage


    First Place Winner

    Sir George Solti International Conducting Competition


    “He has a huge expressive power and vigorous energy.”

    “Kuwahara created the most brilliant sound

    and brought orchestra come to life.”

    “The performance was simply electrifying!”

  • Media

    Shizuo Z Kuwahara, conductor

    Harriet Krijgh, cello

    The final performance of the Malko International Conducting Competition.

    The semi-final stage of the Malko International Conducting Competition.

    2019 The Mariinsky Theatre - 4th Far East International Music Festival

    Celebrate Asia program with Seattle Symphony Orchestra.

    News segment from WRDW of a benefit concert put together by SOA for Japan earthquake and tsunami.

  • Discography

    Click on the image for more details

  • Newsletters

    Second Prize at Ionel Perlea International Conducting Competition with Performance Engagements

    About Shizuo Z Kuwahara

    Opera Brașov

    Filarmonica de Stat Sibiu

    Photos from The Competition
    Keep Connected!​

    The Netherland Debut Online Concert with Phion Orkest
    Dutch Viola Concerti Recording Project

    U.S. Performance with Virginia Symphony
    Performances at The Mariinsky Theatre
    Truth Hidden within the Score
    Photos from Previous Performances
    Keep Connected!

    Projects in time of Quarantine
    Orchestras Around the World
    Editing Shostakovich's Symphony No. 10
    U.S. Performance 2021 with VSO
    Photos and Video Clips
    Become a Fan! Patreon Membership
    Documentary: Conduct! Every Move Count
    Keep Connected!

    February & March Performances
    Ballet - Ravel: Daphnis et Chloé (Premiere Performances)
    Opera - Puccini: Tosca
    The Mariinsky Orchestra
    Panda Wind Orchestra
    Photos from Previous Performances
    Become a Fan! Patreon Membership
    Documentary: Conduct! Every Move Count
    Keep Connected!

    NEW! Patreon Membership
    December Concerts

    The Russia-Japan Cultural Bridge
    Sergei Babayan and The Mariinsky Orchestra
    Verdi: Macbeth
    Photos from Previous Performances
    Keep Connected!

    Principal Guest Conductor - Mariinsky Theatre, Primorsky Stage
    Inaugural Performances as the Principal Guest Conductor
    New Representation in North and South America
    Documentary: Conduct! Every Move Count
    Keep Connected!​

    The Mariinsky Theatre - Verdi: La Traviata
    The Mariinsky Theatre - Verdi: Macbeth
    Philharmonic Winds Osaka with Chris Martin
    Documentary: Conduct! Every Move Count
    Keep Connected!​

    The Mariinsky Theatre - Tchaikovsky: Eugene Onegin
    Osaka Symphony - Beethoven: Symphony No. 9
    The Mariinsky Orchestra - Bach - Brahms Program
    Documentary: Conduct! Every Move Count
    Keep Connected!​

  • Shizuo Z Kuwahara


    The First Prize winner of the prestigious Georg Solti International Conductors’ Competition in Frankfurt, Germany, Shizuo Z Kuwahara is a principal guest conductor of The Mariinsky Theatre, Russia. His conducting career ascended rapidly after winning the Solti Competition, leading to conducting invitations from Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchesters Saarbrücken, Polish Chamber Orchestra, L’Orchestre Philharmonique de Nice, and Frankfurt Museumsorchester. With the invitation from Valery Gergiev, Kuwahara made a sensational debut at The Mariinsky Theatre with the production of Verdi’s La Traviata in 2018, which resulted in a long term relationship with the company. He was immediately invited back to conduct Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, Puccini’s Tosca, Verdi’s Macbeth and several orchestral programs. He has recently made a debut with The Mariinsky Ballet Company, conducting the premiere production of Ravel’s Daphnis et Chloé. This season, he is scheduled to conduct Bizet’s Carmen, Puccini’s Turandot and several other opera, ballet and orchestral productions.


    A Japanese-American residing in Amsterdam, Netherlands, Mr. Kuwahara has led performances throughout Europe, North & South America, and Asia, including performances with Frankfurt Museum Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Seattle Symphony, Orquesta Sinfonica de Salta, Japan Philharmonic, Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, Osaka Symphony Osaka, Denmark National Symphony Orchestra, and Wrocław Philharmonic. He was also an assistant and cover conductor with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony and Orchestra de Paris.


    Mr. Kuwahara was with the Philadelphia Orchestra as a staff conductor and the League of American Orchestras conducting fellow, covering and leading numerous concerts as an apprentice to Christoph Eschenbach. Other past positions include assistant conductor to Seiji Ozawa at the Saito Kinen Festival, conducting the Ozawa Jyuku Orchestra. He also served as an assistant conductor to Valery Gergiev at the Pacific Music Festival. At the beginning of his career, Mr. Kuwahara served as Professor of Music and Director of Orchestral Activities at the College of William & Mary and American University, as well as an associate conductor of the Virginia Symphony. He has served as the music director of Augusta Symphony in Georgia, USA.


    In addition to winning the first prize at the Solti Competition, he received additional prizes from the Malko International Conducting Competition, Ionel Perlea International Conducting Competition, Tokyo International Music Competition for Conducting, the Prokofiev International Conducting Competition and Fitelberg International Competition. He is also a recipient of Georg Solti Foundation U.S. Career Assistance Award, Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans, Georgia Trend 2011 40 Under 40, Augusta Region’s Top Ten in Ten Young Professionals, 2011 Greater Augusta Arts Council Art Professional Award, and 2011 S&R Washington Award. Since 2016, he serves as the Ambassador of Tourism of the City of Yokkaichi, Japan, a city where Mr. Kuwahara grew up.


    Born in Tokyo, Japan, Mr. Kuwahara received Master’s Degree of conducting at Yale University, where he was awarded the Charles Ives Full Scholarship and the Eleazar de Carvalho Prize. He has Bachelor’s Degree from Eastman School of Music, and awarded Arts Leadership Program Certificate, Performer's Certificate and the George Eastman Scholarship. In addition to studying with David Effron and Lawrence Leighton Smith at these conservatories, Mr. Kuwahara has also studied with Leonard Slatkin, David Zinman, Timothy Muffitt and Michael Jinbo at various conducting institutions, including Aspen Music Festival National Conducting Institute, Pierre Monteux School, and Chautauqua Music Institute.

  • Representation

    North and South America

  • Contact