Yuzuru Hiranaka(born in Sapporo, Japan) got basic musical education at Yamaha Music Institution in Sapporo from the age of 6. At the age of 15 he won “ Prize for Excellency” in Junior division for Electric Organ in the 13th of “ Yamaha Music Festival Hokkaido “ and following year he received the Certificate of Instructor at Yamaha Music Institution for Electric Organ. In the same year he begun studying at “ Sapporo Shiroishi High School”, one of the most famous public high school for brass-band music in Japan and begun classical music lessons (Piano and Solfège).
From the age of 18 he studied at Tamagawa University Tokyo at Music department (organ with Aiko Fukuyama, Tetsuro Tominaga and Shigeru Ito, piano with Masaki Yoda, cello with Jyuro Aoki and drama with Akira Okada). During his 3rd year at theUniversity, he was the finalist in the 3rd Japanese Domestic Organ Competition. In 1984 he Graduated from Tamagawa University Tokyo and received the“ Bachelor of Arts Degree for Organ” and the “National Licence of Music Educator” from the Ministry of Culture and Education. Following studying organ with Tsuguo Hirono privately in Tokyo , he made “Debut Concert” at International Christian University, Tokyo organized by The Japan Organist Association, then he went to Europe to study in the same year
He first studied Organ at Sweelinck Concervatorium Amsterdam with Piet Kee (1984-1985), then with Bert Matter and Theo Jellema at Hoogschool voor de Kunsten at Arnhem (1985-1991). In 1985 he began studying historical performance practice on organ and harpsichord with Ton Koopman and Tini Mathot at the Royal Dutch Conservatory, the Hague. There, he pursued in depth studies of performance practice, historical keyborard techniques, baroque styles and aesthetics, basso continuo and chamber music.
In 1990 he obtained the certificate of baroque organ (playing at Waalse Kerk in Amsterdam) and the diploma of organ (playing at St. Stevens Kerk in Nijmegen and St.Walburgs Kerk in Zutphen), in 1991 the diploma of harpsichord as well as the organ soloist diploma (playing in Norden, Germany).
Later, he continued organ study with Xavier Darasse in Paris and Toulouse, France (concentrated on French baroque and French romantic repertoire), with Zsigmond Szathmàry at Staatliche Hochschule für Musik, Freiburg (`Kontaktstudium Hauptfach Orgel- concentrating on German romantic and Modern periods music), and organ and Danish Chuch Music study with Hans Fagius, Lasse Ewerlöf (organ), Frans Rasmussen (direction), Lars Bisgaard (harmony and counterpoint) and Eva Maille (liturgy) at the Royal Danish Academy of Music. There, he obtained the Danish state church music diploma (DOKS- Kirchenmiker A), and the organ soloist diploma with official debut concert as soloist organized by the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen with a programme of all range of organ music incl. a `Harpsichord concert´ with Baroque orchestra and a Clavichord solo. In 2002 he obtained the Danish state organ pedagogic diploma.
Later on, he has been studying organ improvisation with Bert Matter and Anton Pauw, supported by the Danish State Church Fond and The Church Ministry in DenmarkYuzuru Hiranaka is a prize winner in the 3rd international organ competition in Odense, Denmark, in 1990, and the 5th international organ competition in Toulouse, France, 1991, and he received the `Honorary´ Diploma in several international organ competitions; In 1988 Semi Finalist in the 9th of "Festival van Vlaanderen" in Brgge, Bach Organ Competition he was placed as the best 4 out of 84 competitors, and he received “Honorary Diploma” in the 17th International Organ Competition Lahti. Junko Linjama, the Composer of the piece for the competition nominatedYuzuru Hiranaka as "The most musical and fantastic performer in the competition".
In 1998 he was appointed for demonstration of the Compenius- Organ in the Frederiksborg Castle for the Japanese Emperor, Empress and Danish Queen and Royal family during the official visit of Japanese Emperor and Empress to Denmark.
He was selected the first Japenese Musician living abroad as a Japan-Foundation dispatch musician in 1998, and gave recitals at the Cervantino Music festival, the largest music festival in America/Mexico.In 2002 he was nominated for "The Culture Prize of the year 2002" from the City of Vaerloese, DenmarkA TV program which Yuzuru Hiranaka and his church choir performed on DR (The Danish National Broadcasting) in January 2006, and was nominated as the 2nd best sacred television program in EU.
Since 1994 he has been working as an organist in the Danish state church, first in the Kirke Saaby/Kisserup parish, then in Værløse parish and in august 2007 he was appointed organist and music director at the Sankt Johannes Church, in one of the largest parishes in the centre of Copenhagen.
Yuzuru Hiranaka teaches organ at the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen and at the State Academy of Church Musicin Roskilde, and harpsichord at the Malmö Academy of Music for the baroque department at the State University of Lund in Sweden. In 2009 Hiranaka taught at the State Music Academy of Norway, and in 2014 at St. Petersborg Rimsky-Korsakov State Conservatory, Russia as a guest professor.In 2014 he was appointed as a guest instructor for Italian organ academy in North Sjælland, Denmark and giving Master classes through the year in Søborg.
In his native country Japan he has been a guest teacher for organ and church Music at the Summer Academy of Japan Reformed Church Association and giving lecture concerts and Master classes at Hokkaido University, the Sapporo Organ Academy, Tokyo Women´s University, Keisen University, Tohoku Gakuin University, Hokusei University, Seitoko University and International Christian University in Tokyo
His concerts can regularly be enjoyed in Europe, Japan, USA, Mexico, Uruguay, and Brazil. He has been playing recitals in major music festival - the Bolzano music festival, Swiss Organ festival, European organ festival, Musée des Augustins, Kunst station Kölen, Firenze Duomo, Venezian organ festival, Odense Bach week, St.John in San Fransisco, Catalan organ festival, Swedish baroque festival, Cathedral in Copenhagen, Roskilde, Milano, Stavanger, Arnhem, Rotterdam, Breda, Antwerpen, Bari, Olso, Hamburg, Frederiksborg slot, Selsø slot, Haarlem St. Bavo, De Oude Kerk Amsterdam, Rochester Museum, St. Marachy´s New York- NY, St. Johns´in San Francisco, Oaxaca baroque festival, Music festival in Aidaho, Organ festival in Rio de Janeiro and Montevideo, Tokorozawa-Muse, Kawasaki-Muza, Tokyo Metropolitan Opera, Opera city Tokyo, Akita Atorion hall, Yokohama Minatomirai…..etc.
As chamber music player he has played together with many famous musicians such as Horacio Franco, Anders Ljungar-Chapelon, Sigiswald Kuijken, Hiroko Koda and played as soloist with many ensembles and orchestra including Tokyo Symphony Orchestra and European Baroque Orchestra. The Händel year he has performed “Händel Organ Concerto” with Austrian chamber orchestra.Unusual as a classic musician, he was asked to perform organ at Copenhagen Fashion Week in 2008 and performed Bach on organ in the DR-Concert hall for the show.In February 2012 he has been to Yale University and Eastman School of Music to give concerts in USA, and also at the Merida Cathedral, Mexico, the oldest Cathedral in America for giving concert and Master class.
He has made recording for various television and radio networks, such as Radio France, NCRV-Radio 4, Danmarks Radio, TV-Mexico, Greek TV, Tokyo Broadcasting Service(TBS), Sapporo-television (STV), and Metronome DK.
He has performed the complete Buxtehude organ works during 2007 during Buxtehude´s 300 year anniversary and the complete Mendelssohn organ works during Mendelssohn´s 200 year anniversary in 2009 and he gave a lecture concert at Kanagawa Kenmin Hall in Yokohama.
His new CD recorded on the Christian Müller Organ in St. Bavo, Haarlem, NL will soon be released (music including F. Liszt´s ”Ad nos, ad salutarem undam”).
Yuzuru Hiranaka has received prizes from Ascoli Piceno for the inauguration CD of the historical organ, and at Tokyo Music Festival regarding the TV programme he performed for Tokyo Broadcasting Service in 2007, as well as fund from the "Competence Foundation", the Danish Church Ministry (2003), and the "Gramex Foundation” (2004 & 2006) as well as from the “Danish Soloists' Association“ (2009).
Yuzuru Hiranaka was a jury member for international organ competitions in Italy and Holland in 2011, 2012, 2013 , 2014 and 2015
Yuzuru Hiranaka is a permanent resident of Copenhagen since 1991.