Silk and Bamboo – Performance of Shamisen, Koto and Shakuhachi

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4:00 pm

Orvis Auditorium

Silk and Bamboo – Performance of Shamisen, Koto and Shakuhachi

with special guest performers Satomi Fukami, koto & shamisen, and Christopher Yohmei Blasdel, shakuhachi

This event is part of the 2020 celebration for the 100th birthday of Professor Emerita Barbara B. Smith and is sponsored by the East West Center.

Join us for a presentation of music played on traditional Japanese instruments, ranging from the highly refined ensemble and solo music of the Edo period (1603-1868), to koto music by the famous early 20th century Japanese composer Miyagi Michio, to compositions of the late 20th century. Although the music from each of these periods differs in structure, form and instrumental technique, we hope to demonstrate how the traditional music of a culture remains alive while transforming itself into new forms.

The instruments featured are the shamisen (three-stringed lute), the koto (13-string zither), and the shakuhachi (bamboo vertical flute). The voice is also an integral part of Japanese music. Koto and shamisen strings are traditionally made from silk, and the shakuhachi is the signature bamboo flute of Japan—hence the concert title: Silk and Bamboo.

Satomi Fukami (koto & shamisen) is a master of the traditional repertoire and continues to commission and perform contemporary works for the koto. A graduate and recently retired instructor of Tokyo University of the Arts (Geidai), she has been awarded several prestigious prizes for her musical talent. She has performed around the world as well as to an appreciative audience in Japan.

Christopher Yohmei Blasdel (shakuhachi) is a shakuhachi performer, ethnomusicologist, educator and writer. A graduate of Tokyo University of the Arts, he has performed in Japan and around the world, maintaining a balance between traditional shakuhachi music, modern compositions and cross-genre work with musicians, dancers, poets and visual artists. He is currently an adjunct lecturer in Japanese music at UH Mānoa.

Tickets: $20 / $15 / $10