Ryogoku Art Festival 2019 – Artistic director: Akemi Naito

RAF2019_P1_web  1内藤明美(明るめ)



The year 2019 is the 30th anniversary of the Monten Hall and the 5th anniversary of the Ryogoku Art Festival. For this commemorative year, I planned a program of piano works that I encountered in New York City, as well as a mono-opera production scored for mezzo and piano, which was created and premiered in New York City. This will be an opportunity to listen to works that are seldom heard live in Japan.

The program consists of three parts: The program “A” presents the Japanese premiere of the poetic mono-opera, Emily Brontë – Through Life and Death, A Chainless Soul, based on poems by Emily Brontë. It was written for the celebration of her bicentennial year 2018. Jessica Bowers, mezzo, who performed the role of Emily for the premiere will join this performance.

In addition to the concert, on program “B”, Hisae Ashizawa, an authority on Brontë studies and a scholar of English literature, will give a talk. It will be a special occasion to hear about the essence of the creativity of Emily Brontë.

The last program, “C”, includes the symbolic theme of the festival – two pianos. The works were selected from American composers, such as Annea Lockwood and Eleanor Hovda, who created powerful works using the inside of the piano, George Crumb, with his work for two amplified pianos with his characteristic usage of the inside of the piano, Richard Carrick from the younger generation, Eric Richards who expresses his score as if drawing art, and Steve Reich and Elliott Carter who demonstrated the concept of the composition so vividly. I hope that the program evokes thoughts about originality and I hope to share the program with a large audience.



Akemi Naito, Artistic Director





Program A:

Emily Brontë – Through Life and Death, A Chainless Soul (2017) J.P.

Poetic mono-opera based on selected poems of Emily Brontë [with Japanese subtitles]

Sunday, 07/28/19, 16:00 (doors open at 15:30)

Tuesday, 07/30/19, 19:00 (doors open at 18:30)


Japanese premiere performance of poetic mono-opera, Emily Brontë, scored for mezzo and piano, which was premiered in 2018 in New York City. Jessica Bowers, mezzo and Toshihiro Sakuma, installation artist who participated to the premiere, will collaborate

with the leading pianist of contemporary music, Satoko Inoue.


Text: Emily Brontë

Music: Akemi Naito

Installation Art: Toshihiro Sakuma

Jessica Bowers, mezzo-soprano

Satoko Inoue, piano


* There is a video screening of a reading of the seven poems by Robert Ian Mackenzie

before the performance. [with Japanese subtitles]




Program B:

Lecture by Hisae Ashizawa: Time and space in the poetry of Emily Brontë

Monday, 07/29/19, 18:30 – 20:30 (doors open at 18:00)


Hisae Ashizawa, a scholar of English literature and a specialist of Brontë sisters, will give a talk about the vision of the universe of Emily Brontë, focusing on the seven poems used for the mono-opera.


Hisae Ashizawa, lecturer

Akemi Naito, moderator



Program C:

Concert: Creative spirit in America

Sunday, 08/04/19, 19:00 (doors open at 18:30)

Monday, 08/05/19, 19:00 (doors open at 18:30)


The program presents distinctive works for piano solo and duo in America selected by Akemi Naito.


Richard Carrick: la touche sonore pour deux pianos (2015)

Steve Reich: Piano phase (1967)

Elliott Carter: Two Thoughts About the Piano

II. Caténaires (2006)

Eric Richards: The Unravelling of the Field (1988)

Annea Lockwood: RCSC (2001)

Eleanor Hovda: Spring Music with Wind (1973)

George Crumb: Zeitgeist: six tableaux for two amplified piano (1989)


Satoko Inoue; Masanobu Shinoda; Shizuka Kuretani, pianos



*   *   *



ProgramA, C

-Advance: ¥3000-, members & students: ¥2500-

-Door: +¥500 for each

Program B

-Advance: ¥1000-, members & students: ¥800-

-Door: +¥500 for each

Open house 30 minutes before the start.


Reservation & Information:

Ryogoku Monten Hall: ticket@monten.jp


*No one 6 years old and under admitted.

*ID card required for students ticket.


Presented by Monten Co.

Grants: Japan Arts Counsil & Asahi Group Arts Foundation

Co-sponsor: Kawai Musical Instruments Mfg. Co., Ltd. Kawai Musical Instruments Mfg. Co., Ltd.

Cooperation: Naya Collective Ltd.






ACT_logo_web  GeibunshinLOGO_Black_a   kawai



  • もんてんコミュニティ
  • 門天日記