Chicago based violinist, Azusa Tashiro enjoys her active and diverse career as an orchestra player, chamber musician and a teacher. She is a Concertmaster of the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra, and holds positions at the South Bend Symphony Orchestra as an Assistant Concertmaster, and the Rockford Symphony Orchestra as a Principal Second Violinist. She has regularly performed with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, and has performed with the Minnesota Orchestra, Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, Fort Wayne Philharmonic, Chicago Philharmonic, Joffrey Ballet, and the Civic Orchestra of Chicago which she served as a Concertmaster in their 2009-10 season. She has also appeared as a Guest Concertmaster in the Orchestra Iowa for their 2018-19 season.
Azusa is the winner of the first place and audience prize from the Plowman Chamber Music Competition. She was extremely fortunate to have studied chamber music with Shmuel Ashkenasi, Mathias Tacke (Vermeer Quartet), Oliver Wille (Kuss Quartet), Rainer Schmidt (Hagen Quartet), and Eberhard Feltz. Azusa is currently a violinist of the International Chamber Artists, Chicago based chamber music ensemble.
Her passion for chamber music isn't only limited to traditional classical music repertoire. She was on the roster for the Fifth House Ensemble's 2020-21 season artist and has served as a faculty for the Fresh Inc Festival. With them, she enjoyed the collaborative spirit of chamber music to reach beyond the traditionally-perceived limits of classical music. She has also been the violinist of the Petar Jankovic Ensemble which is a unique chamber ensemble group, made up of a string quartet led by a classical guitar, and widely toured in the US and abroad and released a CD "(Com) Passionate" in 2014. She has also frequently performed with Corky Siegel's Chamber Blues, led by the legendary blues harmonica master/singer/composer, Corky Siegel.
Her performances have been heard numerous times on WFMT, Chicago's classical music radio, including their Impromptu series and Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert series. She has appeared as a soloist with the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra, College of DuPage Chamber Orchestra, and Northwestern University Orchestra. Azusa has participated in music festivals such as the Internationale Sommerakademie für Kammermusik in Frenswegen, Spoleto Festival USA and the Pacific Music Festival in Sapporo which she spent three summers and led the orchestra as a concertmaster.
A native of Chiba, Japan, Azusa Tashiro began her violin studies at the age of four. She earned her Bachelor of Music degree from Toho Gakuen School of Music. In 2008, Azusa came to United States and attended Chicago College of the Performing Arts as a student of Nathan Cole. She went on to receive her Master of Music degree at DePaul University School of Music, where she studied with Ilya Kaler.