Wednesday, May 25, 2016

June 9th, 2016: Duo YUMENO perform "Send off at Yellow Crane Tower / 黄鶴楼"


If you love the sound of the cello and the koto, come and enjoy the Duo Yumeno concert at Densho Hall on June 9. This concert will surprise and excite you. Combining traditional pieces with new compositions commissioned just for them, you will discover a new world of music. 

Proceeds from the Duo Yumeno concert will be donated by Cantabile Kojimachi to CWAJ Scholarships & Education programs and Fukushima Relief Projects.

WHEN: June 9, Thursday, Time: 7:00 pm (doors open 6:30 pm)
WHERE: Densho Hall, Shibuya Cultural Center Owada

Ticket price:
3,000 yen (in advance), 3,500 yen (at door)、1,000 yen (students)

CWAJ members can purchase tickets at the May luncheon, or contact CWAJ member Jeannie Ohmae.

For further information, please contact Cantabile Kojimachi:
          Tel: 080-5694-5797, or 03-6753-2822
          Email: cantabile-k@keb.biglobe.ne.jp

Program notes:

Send off at Yellow Crane Tower is based on a Japanese translation of a poem by Li Bai (705-762), widely proclaimed as one of China’s most influential poets. The Yellow Crane Tower, known as Huáng Hè Lóu in Chinese, was built in 223 AD and reconstructed in 1981. It stands on Sheshan (Snake Hill), at the bank of the Yangtze River in the Wuchang District of Hubei province. The poem was written on the occasion of Li Bai parting with his friend and poetic colleague Meng Haoron.

It is cast in a large-scale ABA1 form that echoes a musical architecture known as tegotomono, which is found in sankyoku (chamber music for a trio of Japanese instruments that flourished in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries) repertoire. This form consists of a mae-uta (opening song), tegoto (virtuosic instrumental interlude), and ato-uta (ending song). Set quite low in the range, the vocal line employs characteristic musical gestures found in a traditional Japanese singing style known as jiuta. The opening measures presents a pensive, somehow nostalgic melody in the koto, providing the primary melodic material that reappears throughout the work in a variety of guises.

Text and English translation

故人西のかた、黄鶴楼を辞し
烟花三月揚州に下る
孤帆の遠泳碧空に月
唯だ見る長江の天祭
流るるを

At Yellow Tower in the west 
My old friend says farewell;
In the mist and flowers of spring 
He goes down to Yangzhou;
Lonely sail, distant shadow,
Vanish in blue emptiness;
All I see is the great river 
Flowing into the far horizon.

– translated by Yang Xianyi


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