Who: The Fukushima Youth Sinfonietta: more than fifty students from ten high schools in Fukushima, Japan
Who else: Musicians from Boston-area orchestras and schools. Soloists include Panos Karan (piano), Zach Tarpagos (flute), and Tetsuji Honna (conductor)
Repertoire: Barber: Adagio for Strings; Mozart: Flute Concerto in D major K314; Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor Op. 18; and other works.
What is significant about this project: This is a two-week project, with rehearsals and international music workshops in Fukushima and Boston, culminating in a concert in Boston’s Symphony Hall, one of the world’s most renowned music venues. It is a very special opportunity for a group of young Japanese people who have suffered all the problems and dangers of Fukushima since the disasters of 2011 to show how music has been their lifeline, helping them to survive catastrophe, to recover through courage and determination, and ultimately to thrive. The Fukushima Youth Sinfonietta was established essentially by the students themselves, determined to overcome the challenges of their post-tsunami lives through the strength of music and communal activity. Their leadership skills have already been demonstrated in impressive ways. Using the unique transformative power of music, they have taken command of their lives and have led their communities in international initiatives that will no doubt bring ongoing benefit both to themselves and to their communities for many years to come.
The Fukushima Youth Sinfonietta has been a model of resilience, strengthening the communal resolve of their city, and inspiring other disaster victims throughout Japan and the world. The experience of these young Japanese musicians will touch the hearts of American young people and wider audiences everywhere, and will demonstrate the power of music to heal and empower people in need.
About the TOMODACHI Initiative" :
The TOMODACHI Initiative is a public-private partnership between the U.S.Japan Council and the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo. Born out of support for Japan’s recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake, TOMODACHI invests in the next generation of Japanese and American leaders through educational and cultural exchanges as well as leadership programs.
We seek to foster a “TOMODACHI Generation” of young American and Japanese leaders who are committed to and engaged in strengthening U.S.-Japan relations, appreciate each other’s countries and cultures, and possess the global skills and mindsets needed to contribute to and thrive in a more cooperative, prosperous, and secure world.
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About the TOMODACHI Fund for Exchanges:
This program is partially funded by TOMODACHI’s Fund for Exchanges through generous contributions from Toyota Motor Corporation, Mitsubishi Corporation, and Hitachi, Ltd.