Publication Date




Embargo Period


Degree Type

Doctoral Essay

Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)


Keyboard Performance (Music)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

Santiago Rodriguez

Second Committee Member

Naoko Takao

Third Committee Member

Tian Ying

Fourth Committee Member

Nancy Zavac


Despite the plethora of substantial Japanese classical composers, information about their lives and compositions are relatively unknown outside their homeland. Considering the formidable quality of their compositions, these composers deserve a place within the mainstream of classical music scene. Composer Mutsuo Shishido (1929-2007) is one of the most important of these composers, as he left many appealing works and has been garnering increasing attention among classical musicians. A pupil of André Jolivet and Olivier Messiaen, and a contemporary of Toru Takemitsu, Shishido is a unique and captivating composer with the style of synthesizing Western classical contemporary music with traditional Japanese folk music. This thesis aims to introduce and explore the composer Mutsuo Shishido, and promote his piano works to a wider audience, including fellow pianists. A biographical sketch is be compiled, uniting presently-scattered information to make this study the first reliable and extensive source about the composer and his piano works. Along with the biographical sketch, this thesis includes descriptions and analyses of his individual piano works.


Piano; Mutsuo Shishido; Japanese Composer; Classical Music; Piano Music; Japanese Classical Music