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June 20, 2005

...Midori in Asia

is a two-week blog (June 22-July 3) conversation between violinist Midori and ArtsJournal editor Douglas McLennan while Midori is on tour performing and teaching in Asia...

About Midori's Tour
In the last two weeks of June, I will be hopping around in Asia--Hong Kong, Macau, Singapore, and Japan. In addition to recitals in five cities, I will be working with young violinists in Singapore, with music industry/music management students in two Japanese universities, and with school children and youth orchestras exploring musical imagination.

My collaboration with the university students is part of an on-going project called Total Experience, which I initiated in 2002, during my 20th anniversary year.

My objective was to challenge the generic concert presentation style by working closely with presenters to create a concert that would be a personal experience for all involved: the audience, performers, presenters, and local community. Another objective was to engage as many as possible of the senses of those taking part in the hope that the memory of the theme-related activities would remain in their minds for a long time afterwards.

My recital is only one of many activities where the theme is alive. This year's theme, "Wa," means a wheel or a circle. How will the students come up with ideas for all of us to experience "Wa?" I eagerly await their input.

My work with school children and youth orchestras is part of Music Sharing, an organization formerly known as Midori and Friends Tokyo Office, which changed names, developed new programs and was granted non-profit status by the Japanese government in 2002. This year, Music Sharing has chosen the theme "imagination." I am amazed and inspired by children's imagination in how they respond to music and musicians. Our interaction gives me great pleasure.

Posted by mclennan at June 20, 2005 12:38 PM