Masters of Tradition: Old and New

May 15, 2003
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Performance past event

Tickets are available at the Box Office, open from Monday to Friday, 10 am – 4:45 pm (accepting phone orders as well as walk-ups), and at 6:30 pm (walk-ups, cash or check only) on the day of the performance.

“Fantastic… music of the 21st century.”
Nikkei Shimbun

Kifu Mitsuhashi and Nanae Yoshimura, two of Japan’s most accomplished modern masters, perform a program of legendary traditional works and a program of contemporary pieces by Japan’s acclaimed modern composers. Mitsuhashi, one of the greatest living masters of the Kinko style of shakuhachi, is a recipient of the The Arts Festival Prize awarded by the Agency for Cultural Affairs of Japan (1989). Yoshimura, a disciple of the Ikuta School who also received the The Arts Festival Prize awarded by the Agency for Cultural Affairs of Japan (1992), and is regarded as Japan’s leading virtuoso performer on the 20-string koto.

The shakuhachi is a vertical bamboo flute imported from China with other imperial court instruments in the 7th century–about the same time that Buddhism and many other cultural influences arrived from China. The koto, a 13-stringed plucked zither, modeled on the Chinese zheng, also dates from the 7th century. Together with the revered traditional repertoire, both instruments have inspired contemporary composers from Michio Miyagi to Toru Takemitsu.

These two concerts feature a program of solos as well as duets. The traditional program includes: Tsuru no Sugomori (Crane’s Nesting) from the Buddhist honkyoku repertoire, Midare, Kaede no Hana (Maple Flowers), Shika no Tohne (Deer’s Cries from Far Away), and Zange-tsu (Remaining Moon).  The contemporary program includes Joji Yuasa’s Cosmos Haptic No. 3 — Kokuh; Minao Shibata’s Shimoyo no Kinuta (Mallet of a Frosty Night); Toshi Ichiyanagi’s Stream of Ki Spirit; Somei Satoh’s Kamu-Ogi-Guoto; and Akira Nishimura’s Shakuko (Movements #3, 4 & 5).

The Japan Society gallery, currently featuring Transmitting the Forms of Divinity: Early Buddhist Art from Korea and Japan, will be open until 8 pm for ticket holders of this event.

Special Subscription Offer

Get up to a 30% discount ($25 ticket becomes only $20!) for Spring Performances when you subscribe to three or more.  Get discounts to Workshops, too, when you subscribe to 3 or more. 

Subscription tickets are available through phone, mail or fax only.  Contact the Japan Society Box Office at (212) 752-3015.

  • Thursday, May 15, 2003
  • 8:00 pm