Toku attended the University of Central Arkansas where he received his B.M. Piano Performance. He then obtained his M.M.E. in Music Education from University of North Texas and his D.M.A. in Piano Performance from the University of Colorado Boulder. Additionally, Toku has a Graduate Performance Certificate from the University of Denver and received the Aspen Music Festival and School, Louis & Harold Price Foundation Fellowship.
Performance and Teaching Experience
Toku performed the Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 2 and Mozart Piano Concerto No. 20 K. 466 with the Boulder Symphony. As the first prize winner of the Shining Stars International Concerto Competition, he performed Beethoven 4th Piano Concerto with the New York Concerti Sinfonietta. The performance was acclaimed for “a brisk and vivacious account, distinguished by its clearly articulated keyboard figurations.” He also won first prize in the Bradshaw & Buono International Piano Competition and was a prize winner in the Jefferson City Concerto Competition, Beethoven Club Young Artist Competition, and University of Central Arkansas Solo Piano Competition. In 2010, he made solo debuts at Carnegie Hall, Harris Hall, Narashino Bunka Hall and other venues.
After winning the Eleanor B. Weiler and Mildred B. Fame Piano Scholarship, Toku spent time in Paris, France, conducting research at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique and the Bibliothèque Nationale de France for his doctoral work.
Before coming to Levine, Toku taught private and group piano lessons at the University of Colorado Boulder through the Continuing Education and Youth Program. He also taught string instruments and orchestra at Lynn Public Schools in Massachusetts.
Toku began teaching piano in fall 2016 as a private instructor.
One of his favorite aspects about being a part of Levine is that, “there are many different types of music instruction offered at the school. I enjoy seeing students’ musical and personal growth over time as well as their determination to be better musicians each day.”