During the time that Tomoko majored in Music at Tokyo National University, she studied with Austrian piano composer Max Egger, who was ending his musical career at that time, dying in 1962.
Max Egger was born in 1863, and was known as a mentor for professional piano performers and composers, such as Jean-Jacques Hauser, Peter Feuchtwanger, Yuko Ninomiya, and Kiyoko Takeuti.
He was also a performer and composer in his own right. His first opera was “Frau Holda” in 1908. The main character is a Teutonic mythological character who rides the winter science, shakes out her featherbed to make show fall, and watches over women at their spinner. Other operas written by Egger included “Der Trentajer,” “Der Pathe des Todes,” and “Hexenliebe.” He also performed as part of Sad Sillertaler Trio Mayrhofen, which produced several albums. His most famous recording is the 2018 Max Egger Memorial album.
The Japanese music scene appreciated European music as part of their effort to cull the best from Western culture, and encouraged European musicians and composers such as Max Egger to perform and teach in-country. Germanic musicians were particularly in favor.
Tomoko carries on that love of European piano compositions, be it Schumann or Mozart. She also married an Hungarian and has visited Europe several times.