The recent Soundscapes of Japan performance at Lone Tree Arts Center featured a rare performance by Kakizakai Kaoru, who is a master of the shakuhachi — a wooden flute that dates back to the seventh century. Back then, Zen priests used the instrument as a path to enlightenment. For the evening, Brazilian shakuhachi disciple
Rather than control the rhythm using the tongue, shakuhachi players use the back of the throat, making Kaoru's tonal acrobatics all the more impressive. Kaoru mostly played
As entrancing and as powerful as the music really was in the way that only sounds imitating birds and the flow of wind can be, the sky seen through the windows behind the performers gave a different kind of show that shifted subtly yet dramatically, as though accompanying the music. In the beginning, the grey-green clouds of tornado weather dominated the sky, with flashes of lightning striking seemingly horizontally and the following sound of distant thunder.
Tornado weather gave way to dark cloud formations one would expect from an afternoon rainstorm, with ragged
Bias: Having grown up for a bit in Okinawa I have a certain affection for Japanese classical music.
Random Detail: Found out about this show from the guys in Animal / object.
By the Way: Kakizakai Kaoru has several albums out including many in a more contemporary style of music.
If you'd like to contact me, Tom Murphy, on Twitter, my handle is @simianthinker.
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