Music Teacher Nasu Honored by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe
• Longtime piano teacher Mieko Nasu was
bestowed an award from Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for her longevity.
The award presentation ceremony was held on October 3rd at the official
residence of Consul General Masaharu Yoshida, and he presented the award
to Ms. Nasu with a silver cup.
• The Prime Minister’s award is given to 100 years old Japanese who have
official family registry in Japan. Nasu had her 100th birthday on September
11 last year, and received Consul-General’s Commendation for her many
years of contributions to promote US-Japan friendship. Thanks to the Consulate
General’s office at Chicago, Deputy Consul Keiko Yanai and Consul Yukihiro
Noyori, the Prime Minister’s award was sent to Chicago this year.
• Mieko Nasu was born in Los Angeles
and returned to Kobe, Japan when she was nine years old. Her father was
a renowned Shakespeare researcher and published a Japanese paper on the
West Coast in the 1900s. Her mother was selected by the Japanese Government
and sent to the United Kingdom to promote Japanese culture before she
• Mieko thought that she would major in English literature, but decided
to study music, especially, piano. After graduated from Kobe College’s
graduate school, she taught piano at the college for 13 years. She also
taught piano to foreign children because she could speak fluent English.
• After WWII ended Mieko and her younger sister Yuko came to Chicago to
have further music education. Mieko studied piano at the graduate school
of Northwestern University while Yuko studied violin at the Roosevelt
University’s Music conservatory.
• The sisters opened Nasu Music School and taught countless students from
69 countries until around 2010. They often gave lessons to 50 students
a day, and some of them became internationally acclaimed pianists and
• Beside the music school, Mieko
served as a trustee for Kobe College Corporation for many years. The non-profit
organization has long promoted and deepened the friendship, such as student
and teacher exchanges, between the two countries.
• In 2008, Mieko and Yuko hosted a concert where three young musicians
from Kobe College performed and celebrated the College’s 100th anniversary.
The concert day was hit by heavy rain, and road closures were everywhere.
Despite the bad weather, the concert hall had a full audience due to their
respects for Mieko and Yuko.
• Moreover, the sisters helped for many years to hold “Christmas Around
the World” at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago.
• Mieko said in a previous interview, “Teaching requires patience. I’m
very pleased when my students say, ‘I became fond of music because you
taught me.’” The sisters also taught them good manners through music lesson