Japanese conductor Kazuki Yamada attended the Tokyo University of the Arts, where he studied with Kenichiro Kobayashi and Yoko Matsuo. Yamada co-founded the TOMATO Philharmonic Orchestra with other students at the university, and was chosen to be its music director; the ensemble changed its name to the Yokohama Sinfonietta and became a professional orchestra in 2011. Yamada won first prize in the Besançon International Conducting Competition in 2009, and in 2012 he won the Akeo Watanabe Music Foundation Award, as well as the Hideo Saito Memorial Fund Award. Among the many orchestras he has guest conducted are the Utah Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI, the Orchestre de Paris, the Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin, the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, and the Tonkünstler-Orchester in Vienna. Yamada has also conducted L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, of which he is the principal guest conductor, and the Monte Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra, of which he is the principal conductor and artistic director. He also holds the positions of permanent conductor of the Japan Philharmonic Orchestra and music partner with the Sendai Philharmonic Orchestra and the Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa. He has recorded with PentaTone Classics, Octavia, Exton, and Avex.