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“The World of Hatsune Miku” by Takuro Susaki


The World of Hatsune Miku

Tell Your World

On Mar. 4th & 5th, we spent two days at NHK Hall in Tokyo appearing in “This is NIPPON Premium Theater Hatsune Miku x Kodo Special Live Performances.”

In behalf of Kodo, I would like to express our gratitude to the many people who made this collaboration possible. Thank you to NHK for hosting this performance, Crypton Future Media for willingly undertaking this collaboration with Kodo, and the Vocaloid producers for their continued efforts to create this wonderful production. Thank you to the band members for incorporating our live performance, with its spontaneous sound and dynamic actions, and for wholeheartedly enjoying creating new sound with Kodo. Thank you to all the staff who created the hardware and software required to support these performances with impeccable attention to detail, and lost sleep and skipped meals to get the job done. Last but not least, thank you to everyone who joined us in the audience for the live performances at NHK Hall.

Kodo performer Mitsuru Ishizuka worked hard as the leader of our side of the project, in charge of overseeing all the collaboration content. My position was to support Ishizuka in this role and I worked alongside him from the programme creation stages right through to the live performances.
As I worked on this project, I had a wide range of thoughts and feelings. I would like to share some of my personal impressions with you all through this blog post.

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“March 23 Named ‘Kodo Day’!” by Yui Kawamoto


Mar. 22, 2017

Our USA tour is currently in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Photo: Yui Kawamoto
Today, we were thrilled to hear that March 23 will be Kodo Day in Santa Fe! We are so grateful for this great honor.

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Our Santa Fe performance tomorrow is sold out. We will pour all the energy we receive from the full house into playing taiko for them!

“DADAN 2017″ –Kodo 35th Anniversary Production– (USA)


“New Compositions for Kodo Special Concert 2017 ‘Michi’: #4 Kani Moon” by Mitsuru Ishizuka


New Compositions for Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi”: #4 Kani Moon

The seaside at night on Sado Island is very quiet.
All you can hear is the sound of waves… or so you may think.
If you listen veeeery carefully, you can hear little commotions all over the place…

Photo: Narumi Matsuda

Well, well, what’s going on then?

I hope you will tune in to find out!

mitsuruishizuka_s

Director:

Mitsuru Ishizuka

Performers:

Motofumi YamaguchiEiichi SaitoTomohiro MitomeYuichiro FunabashiMitsuru IshizukaKenta NakagomeTsuyoshi MaedaMaya MinowaShogo KomatsuzakiKoki MiuraTomoe MiuraMizuki Yoneyama

*Cast is subject to change without notice.

news20170300michi

Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi” (Japan)

  • Mar. 18 (Sat), 2017 [14:00] Fussa Shimin Kaikan Dai-Hall (Mokusei Hall), Fussa, Tokyo
  • Mar. 19 (Sun), 2017 [16:30] Kodaira Citizens Cultural Hall (Rune Kodaira Dai-Hall), Kodaira, Tokyo
  • Mar. 20 (Mon/Public Hol.), 2017 [16:30] Ota Kumin Hall Apricot Dai-Hall, Ota Ward, Tokyo
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [18:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 26 (Sun), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City

About Kodo Special Performance “Michi”


“The 2017 ‘Michi’ Performances Have Begun” by Narumi Matsuda


Mar. 19, 2017

The 2017 “Michi” Performances Have Begun

Photo: Narumi Matsuda

 

Yesterday the 2017 “Michi” performances began with a concert at Fussa Shimin Kaikan in Tokyo.
Today, we have our second performance at Kodaira Citizens Cultural Hall (a.k.a. Rune Kodaira), also in Tokyo.

Photo: Narumi MatsudaPhoto: Narumi Matsuda

This is the third time I have been to this venue. My first time was in 2010 when Kodo performed here on the opening night of my first “One Earth Tour” as a company manager. The second was in 2014 with “Kodo One Earth Tour: Mystery.” Looking back, those were both times in my career when I was really stretched.

Photo: Narumi MatsudaPhoto: Narumi MatsudaPhoto: Narumi Matsuda

There are only six performances of “Michi” this year. Each day, the cast and staff are all working hard against the clock. I want to make each and every performance count. I hope to share theses performances with as many people as possible.

Photo: Narumi Matsuda

Director:

Mitsuru Ishizuka

Performers:

Motofumi YamaguchiEiichi SaitoTomohiro MitomeYuichiro FunabashiMitsuru IshizukaKenta NakagomeTsuyoshi MaedaMaya MinowaShogo KomatsuzakiKoki MiuraTomoe MiuraMizuki Yoneyama

*Cast is subject to change without notice.

news20170300michi

Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi” (Japan)

  • Mar. 18 (Sat), 2017 [14:00] Fussa Shimin Kaikan Dai-Hall (Mokusei Hall), Fussa, Tokyo
  • Mar. 19 (Sun), 2017 [16:30] Kodaira Citizens Cultural Hall (Rune Kodaira Dai-Hall), Kodaira, Tokyo
  • Mar. 20 (Mon/Public Hol.), 2017 [16:30] Ota Kumin Hall Apricot Dai-Hall, Ota Ward, Tokyo
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [18:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 26 (Sun), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City

About Kodo Special Performance 2017 “Michi”

 


“New Compositions for Kodo Special Concert 2017 ‘Michi’: #3 Kipopo” by Mitsuru Ishizuka


New Compositions for Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi”: #2

Kipopo

Along with Shiun, which I introduced in a previous post, Maya Minowa composed this new piece for “Michi.”
This piece is like Maya: it’s happy with a cheerful, light melody and a strong taiko ensemble.

Photo: Narumi Matsuda

What do you think the mysterious name “Kipopo” means?

What kind of scenery will you imagine when you hear this piece?
Come along to the theater and find out for yourself!

mitsuruishizuka_s

Director:

Mitsuru Ishizuka

Performers:

Motofumi YamaguchiEiichi SaitoTomohiro MitomeYuichiro FunabashiMitsuru IshizukaKenta NakagomeTsuyoshi MaedaMaya MinowaShogo KomatsuzakiKoki MiuraTomoe MiuraMizuki Yoneyama

*Cast is subject to change without notice.

news20170300michi

Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi” (Japan)

  • Mar. 18 (Sat), 2017 [14:00] Fussa Shimin Kaikan Dai-Hall (Mokusei Hall), Fussa, Tokyo
  • Mar. 19 (Sun), 2017 [16:30] Kodaira Citizens Cultural Hall (Rune Kodaira Dai-Hall), Kodaira, Tokyo
  • Mar. 20 (Mon/Public Hol.), 2017 [16:30] Ota Kumin Hall Apricot Dai-Hall, Ota Ward, Tokyo
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [18:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 26 (Sun), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City

About Kodo Special Performance “Michi”


“It’s Freezing Cold in America, but US DADAN Is on Fire!!!” by Koji Miyagi


Mar. 18, 2017

It’s Freezing Cold in America, but US DADAN Is on Fire!!!

Photo: Yui Kawamoto

We are currently in Richmond, Virginia, which is right next to Washington D.C.!!

Photo: Yui Kawamoto

The US DADAN Tour started over a month ago in Yakima, Washington, and we have traveled over 4500km from West to East! This tour has drawn near its end and we were hoping that Spring would draw closer… but instead, it is still freezing cold in mid-March!

Photo: Yui Kawamoto

In front of the theater in Greencastle

For me, it has been about three years since the last time I was in the States. I spent about ten years of my childhood in a town called Ridgewood, New Jersey. After graduating high school, I decided to leave NJ to start a new life in Tokyo and also learn more about taiko. After I graduated university in Tokyo, I decided to apply for Kodo’s Apprentice Centre, hoping to become a member of Kodo. I totally did not expect to come back to the States so soon, as my US resident status ended when I became a Kodo apprentice.
Fortunately, I got to come back to the US this year and reunite with many friends that I haven’t seen for years. It almost felt like having a little reunion after our shows. The most memorable moment of this tour was having my high school music teachers and colleagues come to see our performance in New York. It brought me back many memories from my high school days.

 

Photo: Yui Kawamoto

During the tour, I got to travel many places where it felt like I was back at home, and there were also places that was very new to me. Having the chance to travel to different places like Arizona, Washington, and Illinois, was very new and exciting for me. From this tour, I realized how the culture and people can be so different, depending on where I go. Although the places we visit belong to the same country, each place evokes so many different thoughts and gives me different inspiration.

Photo: Yui Kawamoto

We have not only given performances in theaters but also workshops for students and local taiko groups around the States. Looking at the faces of the participants, I saw their strong love of taiko and motivation, just like the taiko lovers in Japan.

 

Photo: Yui Kawamoto

A special party to celebrate Kodo’s 35th anniversary with San Jose Taiko, KASA, and friends from the North American Taiko Community

I also learned that taiko can be a very powerful communication tool that can facilitate exchange between people, regardless of political conflicts or cultural differences. 

トラックドライバーのドニーさんと

With our US truck driver Donnie in New York

There are only a few performances left, but DADAN members are very excited to bring the heat and rock the stage for the rest of the tour!!

Photo: Akiko Umegaki

kojimiyagi_s


“DADAN 2017″ –Kodo 35th Anniversary Production– (USA)

Jan.–Mar. 2017
Production Details

打男 DADAN 2017 アメリカツアー

PastedGraphic-1

ANA DADAN 2017

 


“New Compositions for Kodo Special Concert 2017 ‘Michi’: #2 Gunjo” by Mitsuru Ishizuka


New Compositions for Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi”: #2 
Gunjo

Techincally speaking, this is not a new piece. However, it has only been performed twice at Earth Celebration, so it will be performed outside Sado Island for the first time in “Michi.”

Photo: Narumi Matsuda

Gunjo means ultramarine blue.
Imagine the sparkling ultramarine blue of the summer sea stretching out in front of you.
This piece was created to depict the exhilarating feeling of wanting to run out to sea and the sensation of sprinting.

It’s only March, but this piece will make you feel like it’s mid-summer on Sado Island!
I hope you’ll look forward to hearing it!

mitsuruishizuka_s

Director:

Mitsuru Ishizuka

Performers:

Motofumi YamaguchiEiichi SaitoTomohiro MitomeYuichiro FunabashiMitsuru IshizukaKenta NakagomeTsuyoshi MaedaMaya MinowaShogo KomatsuzakiKoki MiuraTomoe MiuraMizuki Yoneyama

*Cast is subject to change without notice.

news20170300michi

Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi” (Japan)

  • Mar. 18 (Sat), 2017 [14:00] Fussa Shimin Kaikan Dai-Hall (Mokusei Hall), Fussa, Tokyo
  • Mar. 19 (Sun), 2017 [16:30] Kodaira Citizens Cultural Hall (Rune Kodaira Dai-Hall), Kodaira, Tokyo
  • Mar. 20 (Mon/Public Hol.), 2017 [16:30] Ota Kumin Hall Apricot Dai-Hall, Ota Ward, Tokyo
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [18:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 26 (Sun), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City

About Kodo Special Performance “Michi”

 

 


“New Compositions for Kodo Special Concert 2017 ‘Michi’: #1 Shiun” by Mitsuru Ishizuka


New Compositions “Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi”: #1 
Shiun

As well as classic powerful pieces from Kodo’s repertoire, we will share some brand new compositions created by current Kodo members in the upcoming “Michi” performances.

Photo: Mariko Sumiyoshi

Shiun was composed by petite powerful drummer Maya Minowa. Breaking free from Kodo’s firmly-rooted image of gentle, elaborate female performers, this piece arose from a discussion where I said I’d like to hear women playing taiko that is awe-inspiring, powerful, and uses all their willpower and physical power.

“Fighter Minowa” called on every fibre of her being to create this piece, and in “Michi” it will be performed by three young female performers: Maya, Mizuki, and Tomoe. They will drum with all their might! Come along to see how this new piece has turned out!

Don’t miss it!

mitsuruishizuka_s

Director:

Mitsuru Ishizuka

Performers:

Motofumi YamaguchiEiichi SaitoTomohiro MitomeYuichiro FunabashiMitsuru IshizukaKenta NakagomeTsuyoshi MaedaMaya MinowaShogo KomatsuzakiKoki MiuraTomoe MiuraMizuki Yoneyama

*Cast is subject to change without notice.

news20170300michi

Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi” (Japan)

  • Mar. 18 (Sat), 2017 [14:00] Fussa Shimin Kaikan Dai-Hall (Mokusei Hall), Fussa, Tokyo
  • Mar. 19 (Sun), 2017 [16:30] Kodaira Citizens Cultural Hall (Rune Kodaira Dai-Hall), Kodaira, Tokyo
  • Mar. 20 (Mon/Public Hol.), 2017 [16:30] Ota Kumin Hall Apricot Dai-Hall, Ota Ward, Tokyo
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [18:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 26 (Sun), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City

About Kodo Special Performance “Michi”

 


“Six Years on from the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake & Tsunami” by Yuichiro Funabashi


Mar. 11, 2017

Six Years on from the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake & Tsunami

Six years have passed since the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake & Tsunami occured.
I would like to express my sympathy once more to all the victims of this disaster. Furthermore, I would like to send my heartfelt condolences to the many people who are still struggling today in the wake of the disaster. I continue to pray for the recovery of the entire area.

Performing arts are our livelihood and when the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake & Tsunami struck, it gave us an opportunity to really reflect on our activities.

At times like that, what on earth can we do… what can Kodo do?

After this great disaster, each member of the Kodo Group was troubled by this question and discussed it many times. The result was the launch of “Heartbeat Project,” which is centered on bringing cheer to people through our performances, supporting the recovery of performing arts in the disaster area, and using Kodo’s network to share news of the disaster area and its recovery with people throughout Japan and around the world.

While our efforts may seem small, we believe that if continuing our efforts gives them more strength.

Heartbeat Project channels the power of performing arts to cheer on recovery efforts following the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake & Tsunami. But natural disasters continue to occur in other places, so we now feel the necessity to use the valuable networks that we have cultivated to date to broaden the scope of the Project.

We will continue to dedicate ourselves to our work and hope that our activities and the sound of Kodo’s taiko will be a valuable source of energy for everyone who experiences times of need.

At the end of March 2017, long-serving Kodo Cultural Foundation staff member Michiko Chida will leave the Kodo Group. She has been at the heart of the Project since the beginning and has supported all of its activities with great passion. When I was an apprentice, Michiko was a kind yet strict instructor to our class, and has been ever since. I pledge to uphold her passion moving forward with Heartbeat Project.

Yuichiro Funabashi, Kodo Ensemble Leader

yuichirofunabashi_s


Heartbeat Project

http://www.kodo.or.jp/heartbeatproject/index_en.html


Heartbeat Project Logo Design: Haruna Kino

In the wake of the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake, Kodo launched the “Heartbeat Project,” a multifaceted undertaking designed to help relief efforts and the people of the affected regions. We will continue to support the restoration of these areas with our music, in particular through charity concerts and fund-raising events, sharing news of Japan’s recovery with our own networks throughout Japan and around the world. Our hearts remain with everyone affected by this disaster, every step of the way.

Kodo


“The 2017 ‘Michi’ Programme” by Narumi Matsuda


The 2017 “Michi” Programme

At Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi”, we will present a selection signature numbers that Kodo has treasured for many years. We look forward to sharing these classics with you live!

The programme will feature Miyake, Monochrome, Mine no Kaze, Zoku, Irodori, O-daiko, Yatai-bayashi, and more!

Here is a brief introduction to some of the pieces on the lineup:

Photo: Takashi Okamoto

Miyake (Arranged by Kodo)

This piece is based on the unique style of drumming played at local festivals in the Kamitsuki Region of Miyake Island, one of the seven volcanic islands of Izu south of Tokyo. The drums are set very low to the ground, requiring a strenuous stance, and the performers drum with relentless power, like ocean waves beating upon the island shore.

Photo: Takashi Okamoto

Monochrome (Composed by Maki Ishii)

Weaving constant rhythmic patterns together with highly irregular ones, Monochrome develops spirally to an exciting climax. The listener might interpret the sounds as those of the changing of the seasons, or perhaps even the progression of life itself. The ambitious pace greatly expands the range and power of expression of the roped shime-daiko.

Photo: Takashi Okamoto

O-daiko (Arranged by Kodo)

This great drum, carved from a single tree, measures about 4 feet across and produces intense sounds that possess a deep tranquility. Lose yourself in the vibrations created when the power of the ancient drum and the pure drive of the drummer become one.

Photo: Takashi Okamoto

Yatai-bayashi (Arranged by Kodo)

Every year on December 3rd in Saitama Prefecture, an all-night festival is held featuring richly decorated two story ‘yatai’ (carts) pulled from village to village. The people hauling the yatai are urged on by the powerful beating of the taiko, concealed in the cramped first story of the carts. This gave rise to a technique of drumming while seated. Our version of the traditional Yataibayashi is played at a faster tempo, giving it a unique and fervent flavor.

Director:

Mitsuru Ishizuka

Performers:

Motofumi YamaguchiEiichi SaitoTomohiro MitomeYuichiro FunabashiMitsuru IshizukaKenta NakagomeTsuyoshi MaedaMaya MinowaShogo KomatsuzakiKoki MiuraTomoe MiuraMizuki Yoneyama

*Cast is subject to change without notice.

news20170300michi

Kodo Special Concert 2017 “Michi” (Japan)

  • Mar. 18 (Sat), 2017 [14:00] Fussa Shimin Kaikan Dai-Hall (Mokusei Hall), Fussa, Tokyo
  • Mar. 19 (Sun), 2017 [16:30] Kodaira Citizens Cultural Hall (Rune Kodaira Dai-Hall), Kodaira, Tokyo
  • Mar. 20 (Mon/Public Hol.), 2017 [16:30] Ota Kumin Hall Apricot Dai-Hall, Ota Ward, Tokyo
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 25 (Sat), 2017 [18:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City
  • Mar. 26 (Sun), 2017 [13:30] Shin-Kabukiza Theater, Osaka City

About Kodo Special Performance “Michi”


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