UMS Concert Program, January 15, 1988: Kodo --
Power Center For The Performing Arts Ann Arbor, Michigan
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
"One Earth" Tour '88 YOSHIAKI OI, Director
Leonard Mitsutada Eto Yoshikazu Fujimoto Hiroyuki Hayashida Ryutaro Kaneko Yasukazu Kano
Chieko Kqjima Eiko Kubota Kazuhiro Masubuchi Tatsuro Matsuzaki
Eiichi Saito Ryuji Sato Shinichi Sogo Kazuaki Tomida Motofumi Yamaguchi
Friday Evening, January 15, 1988, at 8:00
Power Center for the Performing Arts
Ann Arbor, Michigan
A message from Kodo . . .
We have now spent sixteen years on this, our island home of Sado in the Sea ofjapan. For eleven of those years we have traveled extensively in an effort to reach out and touch a chord of understand?ing among people around the world, and equally within ourselves.
Our next major step on this journey is to create a unique environment to which people from the four corners of the globe can be invited to our island, our home, attracted by a common desire to share in cultural and personal exchange at festivals, symposia, and regular workshops. We have acquired 25 acres of forested land on the southern peninsula of Sado, where we will build our new home, now in the final stages of planning. With Sado's rugged and endlessly varied landscape as a stage, we will continue our creation of original music and dance inspired by the traditional perform?ing arts.
The centerpiece for the village will be two superb, traditional farmhouses rescued from the wrecker's hammer and transported to the site. Also planned are a performance and workshop center, housing for Kodo's members tucked away in the woods, as well as facilities for research and documentation of the traditional performing arts. Underlying the goals of our village are the promotion of understanding among different cultures with the encouragement of cross-cultural work, and harmony with nature, the main source of inspiration in Japanese culture.
To celebrate the official August 1988 opening of Kodo Village, we will hold the first annual "Earth Celebration" festival. For the theme of the first festival we have chosen the Japanese word "tataku" (to beat), surely the most primal of man's cultural expressions. Concerts, lectures, and workshops will be offered over the seven-day celebration scheduled from the 15th to the 22nd of August 1988. Proposed participants arc: the traditional drumming of "Lcs Tambours du Burundi "; American jazz great, Elvin Jones; the traditionally-based drumming of Korea's "Samu Nori"; the traditional Chinese percussion ensemble; and from Japan, along with Kodo, will be jazz pianist Yosuke Yamashita.
Cameras and recording devices are not allowed in the auditorium. Twenty-sixth Concert of the 109th Season Seventeenth Annual Choice Series
(performed without intermission)
Dyu-Ha, composed by Maki Ishii
This composition of Maki Ishii expresses changes and transitions in nature and life and celebrates the new beginning of Kodo. Using hyoshigi (wooden clackers) and gongs, a new world of percussive sounds has been created. It was premiered in 1981 at the Berlin Music Festival.
On the island of Bali, Tjanang-Sari is an offering of flowers and rice to the gods. Music and dance in Bali is still essentially performed as an offering to the gods. In this program, we want to plant the seed we brought back from Bali into the garden of the Japanese performing arts. The tinglick is the name of the bamboo xylophone used in this piece.
This is an arrangement of a fishing village taiko piece performed every November in the Pacific coast of Izu. The drums used in this piece -miyadaiko -arc hollowed out from a single zelkova tree, and the drum sticks are of an unusual conical shape. Three miyadaiko drums are set on the stage, and the players will drum in a unique standing position.
A unique style of shamisen strumming is found in the Tsugaru district of the northern Tohoku region of Aomori. It is played on the large and sturdy futozao shamisen and is characterized by strong, fast, and intricate fingering techniques and by long passages of improvisation.
Chonlima, composed by Roetsu Tosha
This piece features four drummers using okedo and shime daiko, and two drummers on the larger miyadaiko. The players pass the sounds from one to another, playing at a frenetic speed. The mood created vacillates from one of pitched excitement to that of humor. This piece mixes traditional Japanese rhythms with those of a more modern feeling. The title, Chonlima (One Thousand League Horse), refers to an old Korean story of a famous horse that was capable of running at tremendous speed over great distances without tiring. Featured in this composi?tion are the okedodaiko, which trace their origins to Korea. Can the drummers of Kodo run true to the pace of the Chonlima
This piece takes its name from Miyake Island, one of the Seven Islands of Izu found in the Pacific Ocean, south of Tokyo. The drum is set very low to the ground, requiring an unusual and strenuous drumming position. This flamboyant technique, which displays the youthful-ness and power of the drummers, is as exciting to watch as to hear.
This dance is performed in Akita Prefecture in the late summer during Obon Matsuri (a festival in remembrance of the departed). The dancer wears a patchwork kimono and a large woven straw hat tilted so low as to completely mask the face, leaving only the nape of the neck exposed to view. This, combined with the coquettish movements of the hat, creates an atmosphere of mystery and shadow that seems in keeping with the mood of the Obon Matsuri.
This dance is based upon a well-known painting which survives from around 900 A.n. known as Chojugida and featuring a variety of frolicking animals and birds in strange attire. Kodo satirizes this painting by appearing in the form of an assortment of animals and spirits all drawn inexorably toward the drum. The drumming rhythm is derived from "Gojinjo daiko" of Ishikawa Prefecture.
Between 1800 and 1900, a ship known as the Kitamaesen, carrying rice and herring, regularly made the round trip from Osaka to Hokkaido via the Japan Sea. That ship served as a means for transporting culture as well. "Mago Uta" (The Horseman's Song) from Shinshu, Magono, is known as "Yama Uta" (Mountain Song) in Tsugaru, Aomori, and also as "Oiwake" (Fisherman's Song) in Hokkaido. Kodo performs "Yama Uta" on the shinobue, a horizontal bamboo flute.
The story is told of a baby, who, upon hearing the thunderous sound of the odaiko, dropped off into a peaceful slumber. The vibrations of the odaiko are powerful, but one can also sense a tranquility in the sound as well. Might that not be the same tranquility felt when embraced within the arms of one's mother
The rhythm of the odaiko is simple. The drummer on one side beats out a basic rhythm, over which the main player improvises freely. When they become "one" with the sound and the rhythm, both the drummers and the listeners find themselves wrapped within the embrace of the odaiko. The miyadaiko measures approximately four feet across the head and weighs 900 pounds.
Every year on December 3rd in the Saitama Prefecture in an area known as Chichibu, an all-night festival is held at which highly decorated, two-storied yatai (carts) are pulled from every town and village. The people hauling the yatai are urged on by the powerful beating of the taiko, the sound of Yatai Bayashi. In this performance, the drummers are in full view, but the seated and cramped drumming technique has developed as a result of their traditional concealment in the first story of the yatai.
About the Artists
Kodo, the Japanese performing company whose appearances have become a modern phenomenon, has created its own vital and living sound, drawing from the rich tradition of Japanese music and centered on the "taiko" (traditional Japanese drum). Kodo's recent North American tours have produced soldout houses from coast-to-coast, this season including performances in New York, Chicago, Detroit, Boston, Los Angeles, San Antonio, St. Paul, and Ann Arbor, where the group is making its third appearance.
Kodo members have lived communally on Sado Island in the Sea of Japan since 1971, practicing the traditional performing arts and training rigorously to develop and maintain the physical strength, energy, and stamina demanded in their performances. In 1981 the company adopted the name Kodo, which embodies two meanings: the first is "Heartbeat," the sound of the great taiko resembling a mother's heartbeat as heard and felt from within the womb; and the second, "Children of the Drum," the desire to play the drums purely, with the heart of a child. In ancient Japan, the taiko was the symbol of the rural community, and it is said that the village limits were not determined solely by geography, but by the farthest distance at which the taiko could be heard. A Kodo performance uses drums of several sizes, the most majestic being the odaiko -a huge, decorated drum weighing 900 pounds, mounted on a platform and played by two men. Other instruments include the shamisen, shinobue, koto, rin, and gong.
Since their 1975 United States debut, when they ran the Boston Marathon and then played a concert at the finish line, Kodo members have performed throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. In 1981 they appeared at the Berlin Festival, where the audience called for encores for one hour, the longest ever at the Berlin Symphony Hall. In 1984 they performed at the World's Fair in New Orleans and at the Olympic Arts Festival in Los Angeles, where they had to add an extra week of performances to accommodate audience demand. In 1985 the group participated in the Edinburgh International Festival, followed by two weeks of soldout per?formances at London's Queen Elizabeth Hall. Kodo has also been seen on National Public Television stations and was the subject of a cover story in GEO Magazine.
Masafumi Kazama, Stage Manager Teuky Crack, Technical Director
Takashi Akamine, Manager Dan Woods, Assistant Manager
Shinpei Harada, Lighting Designer
Takao Aoki and Atsushi Sugano, Administrators
Mark Ross, Associate to the Director
Sheffield Lab Recordings
Kodo wishes to thank Kodo America for support and gratejiilly acknowledges the assistance of the Cultural Council Foundation, New York.
Empire Brass Quintet ....................................... Mon. Jan. 25
Empire Brass & Douglas Major, Organist .................... Tues. Jan. 26
New York City Opera National Company ................ Thurs. Feb. 4
Rossini's "The Barber of Seville" Camerata Musica ............................................Mon. Feb. 8
Music of Corelli, Marcello, Telemann, Vivaldi, Torelli, and
Respighi's Ancient Airs and Dances III Lynn Harrell, Cellist; Igor Kipnis, Harpsichordist .............. Sun. Feb. 14
All-Bach: Sonatas, Nos. 1, 2, and 3; Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue
(harpsichord alone); Suite No. 3 (cello alone)
Bayanihan Philippine Dance Company ..................... Mon. Feb. 29
English Chamber OrchestraJeffrey Tate .................. Mon. Mar. 7
Frank Peter Zimmermann, Violinist
Mozart: "Marriage of Figaro" Overture; Mozart: Violin Concerto in
A major, K. 216; Gordon Jacob: Mini-Concerto for Clarinet; Haydn:
Symphony No. 101 ("Clock")
Hubbard Street Dance Company .................. Sat., Sun. Mar. 12, 13
Belgrade State Folk Ensemble ............................. Sun. Mar. 13
Christopher Parkening, Guitarist ..............................Fri. Mar. 18
Music of Bach, Mozart, Granados, Albeniz, Torroba, Sanz,
Villa-Lobos, Rodrigo, and Falla Faculty Artists Concert (free admission, 3:00 p.m.) ......... Sun. Mar. 20
Schumann: Song cycle, "Dichterliebe," Leslie Guinn, baritone,
Martin Katz, pianist; Schubert: "Trout" Quintet, D. 667 Andre Watts, Pianist ........................................... Sat. Apr. 2
Haydn: Sonata No. 58, Hob. XV148; Mozart: Sonata in F, K. 332;
Brahms: Piano Pieces, Op. 119; Schubert: Sonata, D. 784 (Op. 143),
and "Wanderer" Fantasy
Bonn Woodwind Quintet .................................... Fri. Apr. 8
Steven Masi, Pianist
Haydn: Divertimento No. 1; Reicha: Quintet, Op. 88, No. 2;
Beethoven: Piano Quintet, Op. 16; Mozart: Quintet, K. 406;
Hindemith: "Kleine Kammermusik"; Poulenc: Piano Sextet
Monte Carlo PhilharmonicLawrence Foster ............... Fri. Apr. 22
Katia & Marielle Labeque, Duo-pianists
Berlioz: Overture to "Bcnvcnuto Cellini"; Bruch: Concerto for Two
Pianos, Op. 88; Paul Cooper: Double Concerto (violin and viola);
Roussel: Bacchus et Ariane, Suite No. 2 95th Annual May Festival .......................... Wed.-Sat. Apr. 27-30
Complement your concertgoing with these presentations designed to enhance your musical experience via the expertise of the following speakers. The place is the Rackham Building at 7:00 p. m., open to the public at $3, tickets at the door; complimentary admission for Encore and Cheers! members and faculty and students with valid I.D. For further information, call 764-8489.
Monday, Jan. 25, preceding Empire Brass Quintet -A History of Brass Instruments: From the Forest to the Concert Hall Louis Stout, Professor of Music, U-M
Thursday, Feb. 4, preceding "The Barber of Seville," N. Y.C. Opera National Company Rossini in Seville Jay Lesenger, Stage Director, U-M Opera Theater
Saturday, Mar. 12, preceding Hubbard Street Dance Company -The Dance of Theater and Cinema: Making Entertainment Art Peter Sparling, Associate Professor of Dance, U-M
Saturday, Apr. 2, preceding Andre Watts -Being Critical: Observations on the Role of the Music Critic Paul Boylan, ProfessorDean, U-M School of Music
University Musical Society Board of Directors
JOHN W. REED, President DAVID B. KENNEDY, Vice President
JOHN D. PAUL, Treasurer NORMAN G. HERBERT, Secretary
?ROBERT G. ALDRICH ROBBEN W. FLEMING ?THOMAS E. KAUPER
RICHARD L. KENNEDY PATRICK B. LONG JUDYTHE R. MAUGH
ANN S. SCHRIBER HERBERT E. SLOAN JERRY A. WEISBACH
KENNETH C. FISCHER, Executive Director First term began January 1, 1988.
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
Burton Memorial Tower, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1270 Telephone: (313) 764-2538
University Musical Society