A Yamaha Young Performing Artist, Mariko Shimasaki began playing the violin at five years of age. She is an undergraduate at the Juilliard School, studying with Mr. Masao Kawasaki. For seven years, she was a pre-collegiate of the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where she studied with Dr. Won- Bin Yim. Throughout her entire high school career, Shimasaki was enrolled in the Starling Preparatory String Project under the directions of Prof. Kurt Sassmannshaus. She toured with the Starling Chamber Orchestra to Salzburg, Austria in 2010 and to the American String Teachers Association Convention in Atlanta, Georgia in 2012.
Shimasaki has appeared as a soloist with the Miami Valley Symphony Orchestra, Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, the New Albany Symphony Orchestra, the Suburban Symphony Orchestra, CCM Artaria Orchestra, and the Starling Chamber Orchestra.
Additionally, her awards include 1st place in the Mary Lane Memorial Violin Competition, Columbus Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition, David L. Pierson Concerto Competition, Clark J. Haines Memorial Concerto Competition, 2nd place in the George Gershwin Brooklyn International Music Competition, and many others.
In 2011, Shimasaki formed a string quartet, Ensemble Ohio, with Ken Matsuda, a violist from the Columbus Symphony Orchestra; Ruruko Makino, cellist from Japan; and her sister, Kanako, violinist at CCM. The quartet held a series of benefit concerts in Ohio for the victims of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. 2014 marks it's debut in Kyoto, Japan.
During the summers, she has participated in Carnegie Hall's inaugural National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America, Aspen Music Festival, and the National Symphony Orchestra's Summer Music Institute.