Japan Society marks the second anniversary of the March 11, 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, with a multifaceted live music concert, part of the commemorative programming series Hope, Struggle & Rebirth in the Shadow of 3/11 taking place at the Society March 10-12.
Nocturne: Reemergence Through Music features the U.S. premiere of pianist and visual artist Tomoko Mukaiyama’s Nocturne, which combines scintillating and sonorous classical and contemporary pieces with soundscapes and video footage from the effected Tohoku region. Taking place Monday, March 11, at 7:30 pm, the concert opens with up-and-coming violinist Erika Mitsui performing classical works on a violin made from tsunami debris.
Created in the immediate aftermath of 3/11, Nocturne is acclaimed Amsterdam-based pianist and visual artist Tomoko Mukaiyama’s powerful multimedia project that takes audiences from the dark night (“nocturne”) into the light of a new day. Originally consisting of a live piano concert and a gallery installation comprised of two pianos destroyed by the tsunami, Mukaiyama remounts the work–a sonic tapestry that seamlessly weaves music by Chopin and contemporary works by Rzewski, Sciarrino, Ligeti, Somei Satoh, with an original composition by Mukaiyama herself. Recorded samples of a children’s choir from the area of the tsunami singing school songs are threaded throughout, and the entire piece unfolds against striking video images captured from the devastated region.
The evening also includes violinist Erika Mitsui performing on an instrument crafted by master Japanese luthier Muneyuki Nakazawa from driftwood found in the tsunami disaster areas. Once the flooring and beams of a house, this material now has a second life as a beautifully articulate stringed instrument.
Commemorating the two-year anniversary of the March 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake disasters, Japan Society’s Hope, Struggle & Rebirth in the Shadow of 3/11: Film, Concert & Lecture series underscores the spirit of hope and recovery. In addition to the concert, on Sunday, March 10, the Society screens the New York Premiere of The Land of Hope, famed Japanese director Sion Sono‘s fictional fantasia on the human and emotional toll from the Fukushima nuclear plant meltdown that occurred immediately following the tsunami. On Tuesday, March 12, MIT’s Richard Samuels discusses his book 3.11: Disaster and Change in Japan, the first broad assessment of the effects of the disaster on Japan’s government, society and on the U.S.-Japan alliance.
Motoatsu Sakurai, president of Japan Society noted, “With these special events around the second anniversary of the disasters, we take a moment to reflect on the resilience of the Japanese peopleand the long road of recovery still ahead. Through programming like this and our efforts through the Japan Earthquake Relief Fund, Japan Society is committed to providing support over the long term.”
Ticket holders to any event in the 3/11 series receive complimentary admission to Japan Society Gallery’s major spring exhibition, Edo Pop: The Graphic Impact of Japanese Prints, opening March 9. From the timeless, turbulent beauty of Hokusai’s Under the Wave off Kanagawa (1831-34) to the ominous, drowning destruction of Kazama Sachiko’s mammoth 2012 woodblock print Alas! Heisoku-kan (Raging Battle-Ship the Dead-End), Edo Pop juxtaposes classic ukiyo-e prints from masters of Japan’s Edo Period with contemporary artists inspired by these works.
Japan Society is located at 333 East 47th Street, between First and Second Avenues. The venue is easily accessible by the 4 / 5 / 6 trains via the 42nd Street-Grand Central Station or the E / V at Lexington Avenue and 53rd Street.
Tickets for performances and related events at Japan Society can be purchased by calling the Box Office at 212-715-1258 or in person at Japan Society (M-F 11:00am – 6:00pm and Sat-Sun 11:00am – 5:00pm).
For more information about shows, questions about the venue, or to learn more about the entire Performing Arts season at Japan Society, please call 212-715-1258 or visit us on the web at http://www.japansociety.org/performingarts
- Infographic Design: The Earthquake & Tsunami disaster in Japan (digitalsurgeons.com)
- Infographic: Visualising the Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami (epiphanysearch.co.uk)