Akiko Otao
Akiko Otao

Akiko Otao

“…a tour de force”-Straits Times

“…commanding presence with powerful feelings and a voice to match.”-Opera Magazine

Singapore based Japanese-American soprano Akiko is an arts practitioner, educator, and the co-artistic director of L’arietta Productions, a chamber opera company focused on bringing contemporary operas that are bite-sized, relevant, and in English. 

She debuted in Singapore as the leading role of Nora in John Sharpley’s world premiere of Fences. Selected credits include the title role in Alice in Wonderland, Kannagi, Drusilla in L’incoronazione di Poppea, Musetta in La Boheme, Mable in The Pirates of Penzance, and Crystal in Little Shop of Horrors. No stranger to contemporary work, her performance in the monodrama Diary of Anne Frank directed by Samantha Scott-Blackhall received Straits Times’ Best of 2015 in the opera category. In 2018 she also won in the same category for Chen Zhangyi’s A Singapore Trilogy, where she played the Daughter in the newly commissioned Kopi for One. 

As a vocal coach, she has worked extensively in musical theatre as well as commercial studio recordings internationally, collaborating with Sony Japan, Avex, Gap Japan, and Youmeishu. Selected vocal coaching credit: Pippin, Once Upon a Mattress, Little Shop of Horrors, The Wiz, Aida, and Urinetown. She holds B. M. Ed with vocal emphasis from the Hartt School, and she has recently completed the Practical Voice Science for Singers and Teachers course from San Francisco Conservatory of Music Continuing Education as she believes in anatomically and scientifically forward approach to vocal pedagogy. She is a frequent guest clinician, at VOS (Voices of Singapore), CDAS (Choral Directors Association Singapore), American Chamber of Commerce Japan, Kathmandu Jazz Conservatory to name a few. 

Her musical versatility continues to bring her an eclectic collection of projects. She is currently on the voice faculty at SOTA and Musical Theatre faculty at Lasalle College of the Arts.