Oct. 21 & Oct. 22, 2023
past event image


UPDATE – Additional performance of Ryoanji newly added on Sunday, October 22 at 2:00 PM!

Playbill (PDF) →

Saturday, October 21, 8:30 pm—Pre-concert lecture at 7:30 pm
Sunday, October 22, 2 pm—This matinee performance will feature an alternate configuration. Musicians will be joined by Tomomi Adachi (voice).

Inspired by the Zen rock garden of the renowned Ryoanji Temple in Kyoto, which John Cage personally visited in 1962, he composed Ryoanji (1983) using a non-ordinal graphical notation. Embracing Cage’s free-spirited approach to the score, composer/musician/vocal performer Tomomi Adachi brings his composition to life in a cutting-edge concert that connects two cities remotely. New York’s International Contemporary Ensemble will perform alongside musicians in Kanazawa City, Japan–Hitomi Nakamura on the ancient hichiriki woodwind and Maki Ota on vocals–streaming live from a tea house. Immerse yourself in the hypnotic 3D visuals depicting the raked sand of the Zen garden created by Dr. Tsutomu Fujinami, a researcher at the prestigious Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, as a captivating backdrop for this one-of-a-kind concert.

A lecture on the origins of John Cage’s fascination with Japanese culture, led by Cage scholar Dr. James Pritchett, precedes the concert.

For this concert, International Contemporary Ensemble members include Michael Lormand (trombone), Lizzie Burns (double bass) and Clara Warnaar (percussion).

Tomomi Adachi
Hitomi Nakamura
Maki Ota
Mike Lormand
Lizzie Burns
Clara Warnaar

Tomomi Adachi on John Cage’s influence and Ryoanji

Part of the John Cage’s Japan Series
September—December, 2023

Save 20% when you purchase a ticket to any 2 programs in the John Cage’s Japan Series. Offer only valid for tickets purchased in the same transaction.

For tickets to the performance of Ryoanji at the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa in Japan, please visit: https://www.confetti-web.com/detail.php?tid=74430&

Your ticket also includes complimentary, same-day admission for one person to Out of Bounds: Japanese Women Artists in Fluxus, on view at Japan Society Gallery through January 21, 2024. To view the exhibition please show your ticket/receipt to the Welcome Desk for free admission before the performance.

Images: Ryoanji © Image is AI-generated; Tomomi Adachi © Takayuki Imai; John Cage’s Japan Series © Photo by Yasuhiro Yoshioka, Courtesy of Sogetsu Foundation; Mike Lormand © Mike Gurfield; Lizzie Burns © Brandon Llaw; Clara Warnaar © Da Ping Luo.

Support for John Cage’s Japan is generously provided by Doug and Teresa Peterson and the National Endowment for the Arts, with additional support from Nancy and Joe Walker, and the Nomura Foundation.

Support for the international travel for Tomomi Adachi for Ryoanji is provided by The Japan Foundation.

2023-24 Performing Arts Season Support

The season is made possible, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.

Major support is generously provided by Doug and Teresa Peterson and Hisamitsu America, Inc. Endowment support is provided by the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Endowment Fund, the John and Miyoko Davey Endowment Fund, and the Endowment for the Performing Arts, established with a leadership gift from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.

Additional support is provided by The Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, Nancy and Joe Walker, Dr. and Mrs. Carl F. Taeusch II, Dr. Jeanette C. Takamura, Estate of Alan M. Suhonen, and Friends of the Performing Arts. All Nippon Airways Co., Ltd. is the official airline of the Japan Society Performing Arts Program. Yamaha is the official piano provider of Japan Society.

Japan Society programs are made possible by leadership support from Booth Ferris Foundation and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.

  • October 21, 2023 October 22, 2023
  • 8:30 pm
  • In-Person Event
  • Reserved Tickets
  • $40 Nonmembers
  • $32 Members
  • $32 Person with Disability

There is an additional $2.00 service charge for all non-member ticket types purchased during Japan Society Performing Arts’ 2023-24 Season.