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Cellist Jing Zhao was born in Beijing and began cello lessons at the age of five. While studying at the Beijing Central Conservatory of Music, she was noticed by Ryosuke Hori, a Japanese cellist who, impressed by her talent, invited her to further develop her skills by studying the prestigious Tokyo College of Music, where she commenced in 1996. Three years later, thanks to the support of Maestro Seiji Ozawa, she left for Europe where she attended the Karajan Academy and took private lessons with Mstsislav Rostropovitch and Yo-Yo Ma.
In 2005, Jing Zhao won first prize at the prestigious ARD International Competition in Munich, where she also received the audience prize. This marked the beginning of a brilliant career leading to Jing Zhao playing under the baton of great conductors such as Seiji Ozawa, Myung-Whung Chung or Riccardo Muti, and alongside talented colleagues including Emmanuel Pahud, Eric Le Sage, Trevor Pinnock and Martha Argerich.
Jing Zhao plays on Giovanni Grancino Cello from 1690.