Hong Kong, 16 August 2006 – Be prepared for an earth-shattering experience at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall! Returning to Hong Kong after two extremely successful performances in March, premier Taiko drummer Eitetsu Hayashi will share the stage with organist Ryuta Suzuki and the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HKPO) for two nights in September. The pair will collaborate in a work by Tokuhide Niimi, Fujin-Raijin, which attempts to mimic the gods of wind (organ) and thunder (Taiko). This contemporary Japanese work will be contrasted with the delicate Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune by Debussy and On hearing the first cuckoo in spring by Delius, as well as Elgar's Enigma Variations. Edo de Waart will raise the baton at 8pm on 27 and 28 September in the Cultural Centre Concert Hall.
About Tokuhide Niimi and Fujin-Raijin
Born in 1947 in Nagoya, Japan, Tokuhide Niimi's award-winning works have been performed by such orchestras as Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France. He is currently professor at the Music Department of the Toho Gakuen Graduate School.
Fujin-Raijin was awarded the Grand Prix in the Records Division at the Arts Festival 2004 by the Agency for Cultural Affairs in Japan. It was first written for Japanese drum (Taiko) and organ in 1995 and rewritten with orchestration in 1997. According to the composer, he wrote this piece imaging the organ as Fujin (the god of wind) and the Japanese drum as Raijin (the god of thunder). The piece comprises three sections, which are played without break.
About Eitetsu Hayashi
“The fire of his music magically pulled us into a world of nature and art…The entire hall was vibrating… A trance gave way to a standing ovation.” Die Welt
Eitetsu Hayashi is the first Taiko soloist of his kind, and made his Carnegie Hall début in 1984. Since then he has performed throughout Japan and the world. As a soloist, Hayashi has performed with the world's top orchestras, including the Boston Symphony Orchestra conducted by Seiji Ozawa (1976, 1999) and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Kent Nagano (2000). The latter was broadcast around the world, and attended by an audience of more than 20,000, who erupted to a standing ovation. In the 20th anniversary year of his work as a solo performer, Hayashi gave a U.S. tour "The Wings of Flightless Birds 2002," to great acclaim. Hayashi created a new method of soloing O-Daiko performance requiring techniques and physical stamina previously unknown in traditional Japanese "Taiko" playing. Official Website: www.eitetsu.net
About Ryuta Suzuki
The multi-talented Ryuta Suzuki was trained in piano, organ, percussion, composing and conducting in Japan, US, and France. Since returning to Japan in 1986, he has worked as a keyboard player, an arranger and a composer, crossing over the boundaries of classical, jazz and popular music. As a pianist and organist, Suzuki has performed with New Japan Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, Vienna Philharmonic, and Mostly Mozart Festival orchestras among others.
27&28 | 9 | 2006 (Wednesday and Thursday)
HK Cultural Centre Concert Hall
$300, $240, $160, $100
Available from URBTIX from 16 August 2006
Reservations: 2734 9009
Credit Card booking: 2111 5999
Enquiries: 2721 2030
Edo de Waart conductor
Eitetsu Hayashi taiko drums
Ryuta Suzuki organ
Delius On hearing the first cuckoo in spring
Elgar Enigma Variations
Debussy Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune
The concerts are sponsored by Japan Airlines.
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ABOUT THE HONG KONG PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA
The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra is rapidly emerging as Asia's leading orchestra, since internationally renowned Edo de Waart joined as Artistic Director and Chief Conductor in the 2004/05 Season. Throughout the last three decades, the Orchestra has grown into a formidable ensemble of Chinese and international talents, attracting world-class artists to perform on the same stage. It gives over a hundred performances annually, many of which are highly anticipated events in the city's cultural calendar. The Hong Kong Philharmonic reaches out to the community with such diverse activities as a comprehensive music-in-education programme for primary and secondary school students, performances at university campuses, an annual project with the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts to help nurture aspiring professionals, free pre-concert talks that provides in-depth knowledge of music and musicians and an open-air concert that gives the public free access to classical music.
The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra is subvented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department.
SWIRE is the Principal Patron of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra.