This native of France, now 38, has been playing the piano since the tender age of six. And it’s more than just a hobby for him, because a few years ago he began giving concerts, although he limits them to a maximum of six a year. Why so few? Because Yuuki’s main profession is something quite different: He’s a product engineer at the Powertrain division in Regensburg.
The strong parallels between Yuuki Oba’s piano playing and his work at the Sensors & Actuators business unit are plain to see, he says: Both involve intense concentration, single-mindedness and interacting with other people. Employed in a Customer Center for the passenger car segment in Regensburg, his job is modifying nitrogen oxide sensors to meet special customer wishes. Yuuki’s musical career also revolves around people and their wishes, dreams and desires. This is especially apparent when he plans his performances. He thoughtfully chooses which pieces to play and in what order, as well as an overarching theme to hold everything together. Everything is carefully considered and crafted from start to finish – something that also applies to the products he designs in line with prescribed processes as a system and product engineer.
Yuuki Oba was born in Paris in 1980. His mother was from Cambodia and his father is Japanese. He was educated in German and French and had the opportunity to try out a variety of musical instruments at an early age. Yuuki quickly developed a strong affinity for the piano, and that passion still endures today. “Music has opened up a whole new world for me,” he enthuses. “It offers endless possibilities for expression and interpretation. I really enjoy playing the piano – it’s fun, effortless and exhilarating.”
Yuuki has lived and worked in Regensburg since 2005, initially for Siemens VDO and then for Continental. The two corporate values he identifies with most strongly, both professionally and in his private life, are Passion To Win and Trust. It wasn’t easy for him to launch a musical career alongside his regular job. Yuuki had to develop trust in himself and his abilities. And he had to learn to market himself.
Which is exactly what he did. “At first I only played for small groups of friends and coworkers,” he recalls. Today he performs for larger audiences. In Regensburg, Leipzig or Paris, playing for close to a hundred people is no longer a rarity. Yuuki also enjoys interacting and sharing with his audiences. “I open myself when I play, and members of the audience return the favor. They talk about themselves, their lives and the things they like most. It’s nice.” His father and brother also occasionally show up at his concerts – sadly his mother has already passed away. “But I know she would be proud of me,” he says, with a note in his voice that is reminiscent of the small boy who sat down at a piano more than 30 years ago, full of talent and zeal.