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“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”


“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”

 


“Spiral” by Maya Minowa


Aug. 8, 2016

Spiral

Photo: Erika Ueda

Photo: Erika UedaPhoto: Erika Ueda

We are rehearsing for our new production, “Kodo One Earth Tour: Spiral” at Kodo Village. The programme weaves both classic Kodo pieces and brand new pieces together. I think our audiences will really enjoy this performance.

Photo: Erika Ueda

 

One of my favorite pieces is “Yuyami,” which almost drifts through a dark landscape on stage.

I look forward to seeing you all at Suntory Hall for the premiere of “Spiral” on Aug. 19.

“Spiral” will tour throughout Japan from Sep. through Dec. this year, so I am also excited to share this programme all over Japan soon!

Photo: Takashi Okamoto

 

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news20160818kodo35th

Kodo 35th Anniversary Commemorative Concerts

http://www.kodo.or.jp/news/20150917kodo35th_en.html

The next generation of Kodo will take a bold step forward into new frontiers with three mid-summer night concerts in Tokyo. 
*Tickets on sale now for Aug. 18 & 19.
*Aug. 20 performance is SOLD OUT
*Commemorative Concert Sponsors: Suntory Beer Limited, Onkyo & Pioneer Innovations Corporation, POLA INC.


For ticket orders in English, call Ticket Space Tel. 03-3234-9999 (Mon–Sat 10:00–12:00, 13:00–18:00)


======================
Aug. 18 (Thu) First Night ‒Deai‒ (Encounters)
Featuring: Kodo, New Japan Philharmonic
Conductor: Tatsuya Shimono
======================
Aug. 19 (Fri) Second Night ‒Spiral‒
Director: Tamasaburo Bando
Featuring: Kodo
======================
Aug. 20 (Sat) Third Night ‒Hisho‒ (Soaring) <<SOLD OUT>>
Director: Tamasaburo Bando
Featuring: Kodo with guest artists Blue Tokyo & Dazzle
======================
Preview on YouTube https://youtu.be/i091hksFsbs

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“On Tour with ‘DADAN’ in Brazil” by Maya Minowa


On Tour with ‘DADAN’ in Brazil

Kodo is back in Brazil for the first time in eight years. The opening night of the “DADAN 2016″ tour was held at Teatro Alfa in Sao Paulo.

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Eight years ago I saw Kodo here and it was that performance that led me to join Kodo. It was at this very theater and on the same stage. When the “DADAN” performance began, I slipped back in time to eight years ago and I couldn’t take my eyes off the stage.

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The reaction of the Brazilian audience was just like last time. Kodo received a full standing ovation and everyone was so excited.

Photo: Takuro SusakiPhoto: Takuro Susaki

Before the opening night of “DADAN,” we gave a smaller-scale performance in Rio de Janeiro with a cast of five, including myself. We presented a programme that shared Kodo with the audience in a clear way by featuring introductions about Kodo and the Kodo Apprentice Centre, as well as some information about traditional Japanese culture.

Photo: Takuro SusakiPhoto: Takuro Susaki

I took on the challenge of speaking Portugese as the MC! The whole cast did their best to introduce themselves in Portugese, too, which I think brought us much closer to the audience. The one hour performance flew by!

Photo: Yui Kawamoto

Taiko is really popular in Sao Paulo and I led a workshop there for experienced taiko players. The participants had such a pure, eager look in their eyes. I was reminded of the passion that people in Brazil have for taiko, all the way over here on the other side of the world from Japan. What I was able to share with them was the importance of the sound of every single beat and how fun it is to create a groove with others. It was a very bountiful four-hour workshop.

Photo: Yui Kawamoto

Surrounded by the sound of Brazilian taiko for the first time in eight years, I could feel our “common language,” beyond any language barrier, and the unique timing we share when we reunite and play taiko as a team, as one. I recalled my original intentions and felt the significance of continuing on my path with taiko.

When I was in my second year as a Kodo apprentice, Yoohey Kaito from Sao Paulo was a first year in the Apprentice Programme. Yoohey is helping Kodo as an interpreter on the 2016 tour and he is such a huge help with so many other things related to our performances in Brazil this year, too.

Now we are off to Rio de Janeiro for “DADAN” performances there. The “DADAN” team will do their best to leave the sound of Kodo resonating here in Brazil, on the other side of the world from Japan.

Photo: Yui Kawamoto

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news20160317dadan

March 2016
Kodo “DADAN 2016″ Brazil Tour
http://www.kodo.or.jp/news/20160317dadan_en.html


“‘Chaos’ Finale in Tokyo” by Maya Minowa


Thank You for Attending the “Chaos” Tokyo Performances

Photo: Takashi Okamoto

Thank you very much to everyone who came along to see our “Chaos” performances in Tokyo at the end of last year.

Our concerts at the Bunkyo Civic Center were the last ones of our month-long tour, which started on Sado Island in late November.

In this programme we drum on tires for some pieces. Towards the end of the tour, the covers on the tyres were getting softer so we re-covered them in Tokyo.

 

Photo: Takashi Okamoto

These tires are featured as instruments and the new covers gave them a new lease on life. I had to think about their durability while trying to get the sound I wanted from them, so I played the tires by trial and error everyday.

In “Chaos” we play Japanese drums and various other instruments, so we have to consider the best sound to make with each instrument to fit in with the other sounds. This meant we couldn’t just play taiko in our usual manner. Instead, we sometimes mute the reverberations and weave delicate sounds together.

Photo: Takashi Okamoto

While it was chaotic, somehow it was indeed a feel-good performance for us. There was no plan to create sound in time or make sure you were in time or in sync with someone or something else. So even if someone came along with an unusual element, we would meld together just by feeling and being in that moment.

Photo: Takashi Okamoto

We want to hear each other’s sound in the best way, so naturally, I feel that we all head towards harmony together.

We gave five performances in a row at Bunkyo Civic Center as the tour finale. Thank you very much for coming. I am truly grateful to have been able to perform in front of so many people everyday.

Photo: Takashi Okamoto


Special Feature in the Financial Times, UK “Japan’s Kodo drummers”
http://on.ft.com/1n8pnQ6

“Chaos is aptly named, but this is chaos of the most scrupulously organised kind. It is an exhilarating performance that leaves both drummers and audience breathless and a reminder that there is simply no substitute for the visceral thrill of experiencing the powerful cumulative resonance of these drums played in person.”



ILL-OET混沌-A4-150526

▶ About “Kodo One Earth Tour: Chaos”

Kodo Blog | Chaos

“Chaos” will tour throughout Japan in June and July 2016. Details will be announced on our website in early February.


“Performance at ‘Russia-Japan Cultural Festival for Peace and Friendship’” by Takuro Susaki


Sep. 7, 2015

Performance at “Russia-Japan Cultural Festival for Peace and Friendship”

 

On September 3, Kodo’s Eiichi Saito, Maya Minowa and Mizuki Yoneyama performed at the “Russia-Japan Cultural Festival for Peace and Friendship” in Ulan-Ude, Republic of Buryatia, Russia.

Photo: Hiroshi Abe

This opportunity came about thanks to an invitation to perform from the artistic director of the Buryat National Academic House of Ballet, Mr. Morihiro Iwata. Kodo appeared in the first act of the concert in a work that he choreographed called “Tamashii (Spirit),” which premiered in 2008 and was created to accompany Kodo recordings. This 2015 collaboration was the first time for the ballet to be danced to live Kodo music.

The Buryat National Ballet and invited guests from Moscow’s Bolshoi Theater Ballet danced with such liveliness and portrayed an array of emotions on stage with such subtle details. Their performance seemed to truly inspire and invigorate the Kodo members who shared the stage with them.

Photo: Takuro Susaki

During our short yet enriching stay, we also got taken to see Ivolginsky Datsan Temple and Lake Baikal. We are already looking forward to the day when we can collaborate with Mr. Iwata again.

 

Kodo Collaboration with Morihiro Iwata at “Russia-Japan Cultural Festival for Peace and Friendship”
http://www.kodo.or.jp/news/20150903peace&friendship_en.html


“Upon Arrival in Ulan-Ude” by Maya Minowa


Sep. 1, 2015

Upon Arrival in Ulan-Ude, Republic of Buryatia, Russia

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Before the buzz from Earth Celebration had faded away, we set off for Ulan-Ude in the Republic of Buryatia, Russia, traveling via Mongolia into Siberia.

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We came to perform the music for a ballet production by Morihiro Iwata called “Tamashii” (Spirit). Mr. Iwata is currently the artistic director of the Buryat National Academic House of Ballet. “Tamashii” was created using recordings of Kodo music and for this performance he invited us to come and play the music live. Our rehearsals have begun and I am really looking forward to seeing how this work evolves with the addition of our live music!

 

Russia-Japan Cultural Festival for Peace and Friendship

Sep. 3 (Thu), 2015 Buryat State National Theatre of Song and Dance “Baikal,” Ulan-Ude, Republic of Buryatia, Russia

http://www.kodo.or.jp/news/20150903peace&friendship_en.html

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“EC Rehearsals are Underway!” by Maya Minowa


We began our rehearsals for Earth Celebration on Aug. 8. Today we are practicing for the “Kodo Night” performance that will be held on Aug. 21.

Photo: Erika Ueda
Photo: Erika UedaPhoto: Erika Ueda

With so many Kodo members in the rehearsal hall at once it got very lively in seconds.

We hope you’re all looking forward to EC as much as we are!

Photo: Erika Ueda
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http://www.kodo.or.jp/ec/

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“A 15mm World” by Maya Minowa


The rehearsals for Kodo 2015 Special Concert “Michi” are well underway.

At this performance, I will become the first-ever female Kodo performer to play Monochrome on stage.

Photo: Mitsunaga Matsuura

We have to use such precision when we practice Monochrome… you could cut through the tension in the rehearsal hall with a knife.

Photo: Erika Ueda

The pianissimo parts in this composition are played in a tiny 15mm world. We have to control our drumsticks to make strokes within this minute range. Eiichi Saito says, “Don’t move your sticks up and down, just let them fall from your tanden (core/abdomen).” But this drumming technique is far more difficult than I had ever imagined. (Apparently, in the old days, Kodo members would light a candle and practice drumming like this until it had burned down completely.)

Photo: Erika Ueda

My practice for this piece is rather stoic and subtle and it makes me connect an array of nerves that I never had to think about before.
I hope you will join us for Kodo 2015 Special Concert “Michi” next month.

mitsuru_s

▶Watch on YouTube  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r1N2ME9rH4E

news20150319michi
Kodo 2015 Special Concert “Michi”

Mar. 19 (Thu)–20 (Fri), 2015 Yokohama, Kanagawa
http://www.kodo.or.jp/news/20150319michi_en.html

Director: Motofumi Yamaguchi
Performers: Eiichi Saito, Tomohiro Mitome, Yuichiro Funabashi, Mitsuru Ishizuka, Kenta Nakagome, Tsuyoshi Maeda, Rai Tateishi, Maya Minowa, Ryosuke Inada, Yuki Kajiro, Masaya Koike and Mizuki Yoneyama (Cast subject to change)
Programme (TBC): Zoku, Jang-Gwara, Chonlima, Michi, Shamisen, Monochrome, Miyake, Sankan Shion, Yamauta, O-daiko, Yatai-bayashi

 


“Performance in Doha, Qatar” by Jun Akimoto


Dec. 7 Special Ensemble Performance in Doha, Qatar
Kodo’s First Appearance in Qatar Marks the 47th Country Kodo Has Visited! 

Photo: Jun Akimoto

On Dec. 7, a special Kodo cast performed at “Golden Jubilee: The TOYOTA Gala Event presented by Abdullah AbdulGhani & Bros. Company” in Doha, Qatar.

This trip was Kodo’s first ever visit to the Arab world. A traditional music and dance group from Qatar performed with Kodo at this commemorative event.

Photo: Jun Akimoto
It was a valuable opportunity for us to experience the rapidly changing nation and region right now, as well as Islamic culture and the daily life and views of the people there.

 

 

Kodo Cast: Eiichi Saito, Tomohiro Mitome, Kenzo Abe, Maya Minowa

 


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