The Garage International @ NACC, Fri Feb 24
This concert is introduced as a requiem and dedicated to the tsunami-affected people of the Tohoku region. Etsuko Kawaguchi expertly plucks and scrapes her koto – a 13-string Japanese lute – drawing forth its exquisite texture and tones.
Etsuko also sings in traditional Japanese style in some of the pieces.
Special guest, Teiko Kikuchi, joins Etsuko on the 17-string bass koto, adding a haunting richness and resonating bottom end. The final piece, Rapids , is rhythmic and more dynamic, and the repetitive, echoing phrases achieve a blissfully hypnotic effect, climaxing with dissonance and emotional momentum.
This concert would feel easily at home on any WOMAD stage, and the masterful manipulation of so many strings appears deceivingly simple in the hands of these highly experienced exponents of the Koto.
Watch the screens filled with beautiful images or simply close your eyes and journey to the land and people of Japan .
Final Word: Transporting!