The TCCF was founded by conductor Marin Alsop in 2002 to encourage women studying or training to be orchestral conductors.
Hotoda also leads a contemporary music ensemble in Chicago called Noamnesia, which focuses on works by living composers. She began her piano studies at age three in Tokyo and holds a doctorate in piano performance from the University of Southern California and a Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music. She has also done graduate work in conducting at the Peabody Institute.
As the winner of the 2006 TCCF, Hotoda will work with Marin Alsop in coaching sessions, rehearsals and performance with the Bournemouth Symphony, Colorado Symphony and Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in 2007. She will have all of her work with the orchestras professionally videotaped and receive travel and accommodation stipends.
Past awardees of the TCCF include conductors Jeri Lynne Johnson (2005), Laura Jackson (2004) and Carolyn Kuan (2002-03). Laura Jackson is now assistant conductor of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and a conducting fellow at the American Symphony Orchestra League; Carolyn Kuan is assistant conductor of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra.
Two other applicants for the 2006 TCCF were given special recognition: Mei-Ann Chen, conductor and music director of the Portland Youth Philharmonic Association, and Alondra de la Parra, founder and artistic director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Americas.
Alsop commented, "It is a privilege to be in a position to impact the lives of aspiring women conductors. Based on personal experience, I can clearly see what is needed to assist emerging conductors in the pursuit of their dreams and I want to make the road easier and more rewarding for them."
The Winnipeg Symphony's music director designate, Alexander Mickelthwate, says, "[Hotoda] combines great musicality, clear technique and a dynamic personality, along with a command of not only classical and contemporary music, but traditional Asian music as well."