BBC Symphony Orchestra’s Total Immersion Series Expands to Focus on a Whole Country: Japan

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For the first time the BBC Symphony Orchestra expands its highly successful Total Immersion series beyond a single composer to focus on a whole country in Total Immersion: Sounds from Japan

For the first time the BBC Symphony Orchestra expands its highly successful Total Immersion series beyond a single composer to focus on a whole country in http:// Total Immersion: Sounds from Japan. On Saturday 2 February, acclaimed Japanese conductor Kazushi Ono will explore Japanese music focusing on the work of Takemitsu and taking in works by Nishimura, Mochizuki, Fujikura, Hosokawa and Miyoshi.

The day will culminate in the UK premieres of Dai Fujikura’s Atom and Toshio Hosokawa’s Woven Dreams alongside Takemitsu’s November Steps for shakuhachi, biwa and orchestra, with soloists Kifu Mitsuhashi and Kumiko Shutou and the BBC Symphony Orchestra under Kazushi Ono.

In the lunchtime concert, Sian Edwards conducts the Guildhall Chamber Ensemble, in a programme of chamber music by Takemitsu, Jo Kondo and Dai Fujikura. At 5.00pm the Okeanos ensemble will perform traditional Japanese music alongside movements from Dai Fujikura’s Okeanos Cycle written especially for the group. In addition, musicians from the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Okeanos will work with Dai Fujikura to create a new work fusing Eastern and Western contemporary classical music.

Prior to the main evening concert the Barbican foyer will host the culmination of a week-long BBC SO Learning project Diverse Orchestras Japan. In partnership with the British Council, the project sees the BBC SO exploring the contemporary and traditional music of Japan in a series of creative workshops led by Natasha Zielazinski and Detta Danford of Jetsam, bringing together over 60 young and adult amateur musicians and composers. On the 31 January as part of the Diverse Orchestras Japan week, Kifu Mitsuhashi (shakuhachi) and Kumiko Shuto (biwa) perform traditional Japanese music in a free concert at Maida Vale Studios.

The Total Immersion day will also explore the life of legendary Japanese composer Takemitsu with two film screenings; Music for the Movies, a documentary about Takemitsu’s film music directed by Charlotte Zwerin, and Thirteen Steps Around Takemitsu, a portrait by director Barrie Gavin, filmed at the composer’s home in Tokyo, which includes the composer in conversation and performances of his music.
Total Immersion days feature talks, films and discussion as well a range of performances – from small scale chamber works to full blown orchestral concerts - designed to give an insight into the new musical writing from the countries and composers explored.

For further information please contact:                                                    
Camilla Dervan, camilla(dot)dervan(at)bbc(dot)co(dot)uk

Listings Information
Saturday 2 February 2013, Barbican
Total Immersion: Sounds from Japan
Takemitsu and the new generation

10.30am, Film & Discussion, Barbican Cinemas
Music for the Movies: Tōru Takemitsu
US, 1994, Dir: Charlotte Zwerin
Plus an introduction to music in Japan today.

1.00pm, Concert, LSO St Luke’s
Takemitsu Rain Spell
Takemitsu Tree Line
Jo Kondo Surface, Depth and Colour
Dai Fujikura Secret Forest

Sian Edwards conductor
Guildhall Chamber Ensemble

3.00pm, Film, Barbican Cinemas
Thirteen Steps Around Takemitsu
UK, 1986, Dir: Barrie Gavin

5.00pm, Concert, Barbican Hall
Traditional Japanese music for sho, koto and shakuhachi
Dai Fujikura Movements from Okeanos Cycle: Touch of Breeze, Breathing Tides, Cutting Sky and Okeanos Breeze
New work created by musicians from the BBC SO, Okeanos and composer Dai Fujikura

Robin Thompson sho
Melissa Holding koto
Clive Bell shakuhachi
Musicians from the BBC Symphony Orchestra

7.00pm, Free Performance, Barbican Foyer
The culmination of a BBC SO Learning’s Diverse Orchestras Week project.

7.30pm, Concert, Barbican Hall
Akira Nishimura Bird Heterophony
Misato Mochizuki Musubi
Takemitsu November Steps, for shakuhachi, biwa and orchestra
Dai Fujikura Atom (UK premiere)
Toshio Hosokawa Woven Dreams (UK premiere)
Akira Miyoshi Litania pour Fuji

BBC Symphony Orchestra
Kazushi Ono conductor
Kifu Mitsuhashi shakuhachi
Kumiko Shutou biwa

Recorded by BBC Radio 3 for future broadcast in Hear and Now:

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Camilla Dervan
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