traditional culture

"Stillness, Love and Death - A creative stage that combines Noh and opera" Enjoy the fusion of stories that transcend genres in Kanagawa Art Hall

「静、愛と死~能とオペラの融合による創作舞台~」  ジャンルを超えて実現した物語の融合を愉しむ in かながわアートホール

“Silence, Love and Death ~Creative Stage Combining Noh and Opera~” Performance Overview
[Date and time] Saturday, August 7, 2021, 15:00-17:00 (live streaming)
[Distribution URL] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykdgnhWYbTY (Archive distribution)
Part 1
Kamakura Noh Stage Public Interest Incorporated Foundation
Kanta Nakamori (shite) Tomisaka Kara (kokata) Kazuyuki Fukuo (armpit)
Shintaro Sugi (Nohkan) Yotaro Uzawa (Small drum) Hirotada Kamei (Old drum) Akira Sawada (Taiko drum)
Yoshimasa Kanze (Jigashira)
Part 2
Singer affiliated with Japan Opera Association
Ryoko Sunagawa (Sop. Shizuka), Yumiko Mukono (M.Sop. Iso no Zen Master), Ryoichi Nakai (Ten. Yoshitsune),
Kenji Moriguchi (Br. Yoritomo) Akemi Yamada (20-string koto)
Akiko Sakurai (Satsuma Biwa), Kaho Tosha (Kotzumi), Yuko Tanaka (Conductor)
Kanagawa Philharmonic Orchestra (Orchestra)
About sold tickets
Regarding refunds for purchased tickets, please contact the entrusted business operator of this project.
Kanagawa Philharmonic Orchestra, a public interest incorporated foundation, will contact you individually.
[Planned method of holding]
Held with a paid audience at the Kanagawa Prefectural Citizens Hall (3-1 Yamashita-cho, Naka-ku, Yokohama)
[Holding method after change]
We will be streaming live for free on the day of the event. Please note that the distribution schedule is subject to change.
Please check this page for the latest distribution information.

In preparation for the Tokyo 2020 Games, the Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, a public interest incorporated foundation, is organizing the Tokyo 2020 NIPPON Festival, a collaboration between the national and local governments, cultural organizations, etc., to convey the power of Japanese culture and art both domestically and internationally. We plan to implement this nationwide.
As a co-sponsor program of the Tokyo 2020 NIPPON Festival, with Kanagawa Prefecture also playing a leading role, the Kanagawa Philharmonic Orchestra will be holding a comprehensive art project planned and produced by the Kanagawa Philharmonic Orchestra that combines the Japanese classical performing art "Nohgaku" and the Western performing art "opera." We will hold a performance where you can enjoy the charm of

A story based on the ``Minamoto no Yoshitsune legend'' will be performed in two parts, set in the quaint ancient capital of Kamakura, one of Kanagawa Prefecture's leading tourist areas.
One part is a digest version of the Noh play ``Funa Benkei,'' and the second part is a digest version of the opera ``Shizuka to Yoshitsune.''
The biggest highlight is that the ``time'' of the Noh play in the first half and the opera in the second half are connected.
The first half of the play, which depicts the parting between Shizuka Gozen and Yoshitsune, is performed as Noh, and then continues with the opera ``Shizuka and Yoshitsune.''
It is no exaggeration to say that the completely different genres of Noh and opera are brought together on one stage, and the protagonist weaves a story...this is the whole reason why this stage performance is considered to be a ``fusion''.

``The performing art of Noh is pure and hates mixing, so it is a noble world where it is difficult to co-star with other genres.This time, we have collaborated with shite master Kanta Nakamori in the past, so we were careful not to violate the rules of Noh. This was achieved through careful discussions regarding the fusion."
Toru Sakakibara, music director of the Kanagawa Philharmonic Orchestra, who is the producer of this project, says:

``Funa Benkei'' is a story created about 500 years ago based on the Tale of the Heike and Azuma Kagami.
"Shizuka to Yoshitsune" was produced in 1993 for the opening of the Kamakura Art Museum by Rei Nakakashi, Japan's proud lyricist, and Minoru Miki, a composer who is acclaimed around the world and represents not only Japan but Asia. This is a Japanese opera performed.
These two stories are truly ``connected'' in this performance, and I would like to convey to everyone as much as possible, including the highlights, how precious and valuable this is.
Please join us.

The first thing we should talk about is the secret story behind the birth of the Japanese opera "Shizuka to Yoshitsune."
Even if you are not a particular history buff, if you are Japanese, you probably know the tragic love story of Shizuka Gozen. In 1993, Mr. Nakanishi decided to produce the opera ``Shizuka to Yoshitsune'' as a commission to commemorate the opening of the Kamakura Art Center, Kamakura, where this tragic love story takes place. Nakanishi said at the time, ``My intention was to imagine a world that gives life, voice and movement, makes snow fall, and rings bells, so that it can be mistaken for reality.'' The previous year, Mr. Nakanishi collaborated on the opera ``Wakahime'', a major work based on ancient Japan, and fell in love with his talent as a composer. Nominated Minoru Miki.

Mr. Miki declares that creating operas set in Japan is his ``life's work,'' based on the belief that Japanese history and culture itself has an international character and will prove that it has value that can be accepted overseas. , has continued to lead Japanese opera. As his ``life's work'' suggests, Mr. Miki spent 37 years tracing back over 1,000 years of Japanese history, exploring the zeitgeist of each era, and creating a magnificent ``Nine Series of Japanese History Operas'' that perfectly expresses its unique beauty. ” has been completed.
Among them, ``Shunkinsho'', which was the debut work from the Japan Opera Association, and ``Ada'' and ``Joururi'', which were collaborated with a famous British director and made Japanese opera known and established around the world, were screened as part of the early modern trilogy. His many works are still loved and highly acclaimed around the world.
In addition, ``Ai-en'' (Ai-en) at the New National Theater, which is popular in English-speaking countries and commissioned from overseas, was the first time in the 110-year history of Japanese opera that a foreigner performed the Japanese language performance. He has accomplished the amazing feat of being named to the Heidelberg Opera House.

Mr. Miki also participated in the formation of the Japanese musical instrument ensemble ``Japan Music Group'' in 1964, composed many compositions for Japanese musical instruments, and is a leading figure in reviving the charm of so-called folk instruments in modern Japanese music.
His focus on Japanese musical instruments goes beyond composing, and extends to the development of the 20-string koto, which has 20 strings (later 21 strings), instead of 13 strings, as a koto with expressive power suitable for contemporary music.
This development was an extremely ground-breaking event that brought about a new trend in the history of Japanese music and revolutionized Japanese musical instrument performance techniques.
Mr. Miki's works are not limited to Western sounds, but also skillfully incorporate Japanese sounds such as the koto and various Japanese instruments, and are highly acclaimed both domestically and internationally as his uniquely established style.

What do you think of the opera ``Shizuka and Yoshitsune'' created by these two giants? It is a work of great value that makes me shiver just thinking about it.

Finally, 26 years after its premiere in 1993, the long-awaited revival of this masterpiece in 2019 was completed by Aiko Koori, who served as the general director. Mr. Gun, who played Iso no Zenji in the first production, was able to perform this beloved masterpiece two years ago.
The three performers Yoshitsune, Iso no Zenji, and Yoritomo in the main performance in August are repeat performances from two years ago.
Ryoichi Nakai as Yoshitsune Minamoto Kenji Moriguchi as Yoritomo Minamoto

The leading role, Shizuka, will be played by Kyoko Sunagawa, a Japan Opera Association prima and one of Japan's leading soprano singers. It is a must-see to see her dramatically dance and sing about how she is a shirabyoshi and a woman who continues to think of her beloved.
Akemi Yamada, who plays the twenty-string koto, has also been a performer since the first performance. The performance of the koto, which perfectly overlaps and blends in with other Western instruments, creates a uniquely Japanese worldview.

Shizuka Soprano Ryoko Sunagawa

As Mr. Nakanishi said above, the love story between Shizuka and Yoshitsune is a work that is ultimately tragic, yet delicate and full of life, with beautiful and sophisticated Japanese and music.

A creative stage show that combines the two themes of "love and death" in one stage.

In the first half, ``Funa Benkei'', Yoshitsune goes on a love escapade with his mistress Shizuka Gozen in order to get away from his older brother, Minamoto no Yoritomo, with whom he had a rift. This journey is extremely difficult, but they are unable to overcome it and are faced with the prospect of parting ways at Omotsuura. A powerful yet fleeting farewell dance that expresses the love and sadness of two people who have to part. This dance connects time to the second part, and this is the highlight. What kind of performance do you use to connect them?

At the beginning, I mentioned that this connection, the ``fusion'' so to speak, is the biggest appeal of this performance. If I were to talk about all the charms here, it would probably cut the fun in half, so I'll just give you a hint.
What connects the two worlds is Shirabyoshi, which was inherited from Shizuka's mother, the Zen master Iso, and which became the reason for her love affair with Yoshitsune. This is Shizuka's identity in another world.

We hope you will enjoy the first part, the last farewell dance, and the second part, Hachimangu Shizuka's dance.
Furthermore, the charm of this stage is that it is full of ingenuity that anyone can enjoy, such as this connection and the inclusion of a biwa player playing the role of a ``storyteller'' who effectively conveys the scenes of the digest version.

The performers are shown on a sub-screen, and subtitles complement the story to make it easier to understand the changes in the main character's state of mind. Even the highlight performances in the large hall are designed to be easy to understand.
Twenty-string koto Akemi Yamada Kotsuzumi Tosha Kaho

And finally the lighting. It is a very important element that gives time and light to the stage and expresses the space and characters more emotionally.

``The full lighting design from the first part is not the classic solemn Noh, but modern, and the lighting is witty and designed to match this drama.Especially in the second part, the winter Yoshino Mountains '', the spring-like Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, and the beauty of the stillness of Yoshitsune ascending to heaven in the midst of falling snow,'' said Mr. Sakakibara.

This stage production transcends genres, countries, and eras with the theme of "love and death," which are the most universal and eternal themes for humans, especially those of us living today.
In times like these, why not stop by and give your soul some wonderful nourishment?

A press announcement was made on June 1, 2021 (Tuesday) about ``Stillness, Love and Death - A creative stage that combines Noh and opera'' (scheduled to be held on August 7, 2021). In order to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus infection and to conduct the event in a safer and more secure environment, the event will be held without spectators and will be streamed live (free of charge).

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