Saori Ohno was born in Tokyo and raised in Germany, where she received her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst in Stuttgart. She continued her studies at Indiana University, where she was awarded an Artist Diploma in 1994, and completed a graduate Chamber Music Program at the Institute of Chamber Music at the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee in 1996. In 2005, she received her doctoral degree piano performance (DMA) at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Her doctoral dissertation is titled “The Piano Chamber Music of Maurice Ravel.”
She studied with artists including Lieselotte Gierth, Gerd Lohmeyer, Menahem Pressler, Rita Sloan, Lev Natochenny and Joseph Kalichstein, and has participated in master classes with György Sebok and the Guarneri Quartet, among others. Her chamber music teachers include pianists Menahem Pressler, Rita Sloan, clarinetist James Campbell, the Fine Arts Quartet, violinists Wilhelm Melcher, Rostislav Dubinsky, Efim Boico, Daniel Phillips, and cellist Wolfgang Laufer.
She has participated in solo and chamber music master classes with György Sebok, the Guarneri and Fine Arts Quartets among others.
Saori Ohno was the winner of the German National Youth Competition in 1986, the E. Nakamichi Piano Competition at the Aspen Music Festival in 1992, and the Indiana University Piano Competition in 1994, and was awarded top prizes at the Fischoff and Coleman Chamber Music Competitions in 1994.
As a soloist, recitalist and chamber musician, she has performed extensively throughout Europe, the United States and Japan. She has appeared on the Dame Myra Hess Concert Series, the Aspen Music Festival Winter Concerts and at the Gubbio Festival in Italy to name a few. She has appeared as soloist with the Chamber Orchestra of Albuquerque, the Aspen Concert Orchestra, the Indiana Philharmonic Orchestra, the Southfield Symphony, the Glen Ellyn New Philharmonic and has toured Germany with the German Youth Orchestra. Saori Ohno has been heard on NHK National Radio in Japan, as well as WFMT Chicago and SDR, SR, BR, HR in Germany.
Saori Ohno was the first recipient of the piano teaching fellowship at the Aspen Music Festival, where she served on the chamber music faculty. She has taught at music schools in Germany and the United States, and has served as an Associate instructor at Indiana University. Upon her return to Japan in 2005, she accepted teaching positions at Shobi University and Shobi Music College, where she teaches solo piano, chamber music and collaborative arts.
She has recorded piano works by Maurice Ravel and Robert Schumann. Her most recent CD of Franz Schubert’s late piano sonatas D. 959 and D. 960 was released in 2021.