~ One unique pianist with a compelling life story ~
Fujiko (Ingrid Fujiko Hemming) was born in Berlin to a Japanese pianist mother and a Swedish father. When Fujiko was a child, her family relocated to Tokyo. By the age of 10, she was taking lessons from Leonid Kreutzer. By 16, she was hailed a child prodigy and made her concert debut at 17. She won numerous prestigious competitions and prizes. Her musicianship was praised by the industry "elite" for her extraordinary interpretation of Chopin and Liszt.
Fujiko moved to Vienna and worked with the likes of Ukrainian piano great Shura Cherkassky, famed Italian-German conductor Bruno Maderna, and legendary conductor and composer Leonard Bernstein.
However, prior to making her recital debut under Bernstein's guidance in Vienna, Fujiko lost all hearing in her left ear. At 16, she already lost her hearing in her right ear due to illness. Completely deaf for 2 years, and 40% of her left hearing was returned in her left ear but it was not so easy to get back her brilliant career. She spent years teaching music in Sweden.
In 1999, Japanese National Television aired her documentary of Fujiko's life and suddenly she became a superstar. She has received the Classical Album of the Year award at the Japan Gold Disc Awards four times, a feat never before accomplished.
In 2009, she debuted in the U.S. with the release of five albums which have sold between 350,000 and 2 million albums in Japan.