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Japanese quartet fluent in traditional, western styles

Japanese quartet fluent in traditional, western styles A quartet led by Japanese artist Karin Nakagawa will perform a programme of original songs on traditional instruments at Ha Noi's Tuoi Tre (Youth) Theatre on December 8-9. Nakagawa plays a 25-stringed koto (Japanese harp), and has developed her performance style, a unique way of performing the rhythm with her feet.

Among the other members of her group, Akihito Obama performs shakuhachi (Japanese bamboo flute), displaying a combination of traditional techniques with a fluency in Western styles, while rounding out the quartet are pianist Mami Ishizuka and percussionist Akira Sunrise, who plays a variety of self-made and other instruments from around the world.

Local guest artists will also join in the performance, including Vanessa Vo Van Anh on dan tranh (16-chord zither) and cheo (traditional opera) singer Thu Huyen.

Van Anh started playing the zither at the age of four at the Viet Nam Academy of Music and co-composed and recorded the 2009 Emmy Award-winning soundtrack for the documentary Bolinao 52.

Huyen studied at the Ha Noi College of Art. She won first prize at the Young Talent Competition of Traditional Arts in 2000 and received the honour of Meritorious Artist from the Vietnamese Government in 2007.

The Japan Foundation Centre for Cultural Exchange is presenting the concert, and free free tickets are available at the Japan Foundation Centre, 27 Quang Trung Street in Ha Noi, beginning on November 26. (Source: VNS)

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