Roger Turner x Koichi Makigami x Yumiko Tanaka: Live at the Hara Museum
On Saturday 7 December 2019 Roger Turner, the internationally renowned improvisational drummer and percussionist from the UK, performed at the Hara Museum for the first time in six years alongside visionary vocalist Koichi Makigami and shamisen maestro Yumiko Tanaka. Mac, a Friend of the Hara Museum, was there to support and reports back with photos and video!
Roger Turner has been working as an improvising percussionist since the early 1970’s, collaborating in numerous established and ad hoc assemblies in a remarkable range of activities, from solo performances to collaborations with contemporary artists in fields as varied as experimental rock, open-form song, avant-garde dance, film and other creative endeavours. He has engaged in solo work, work with electro-acoustic ensembles and open-form song, extensive work with dance and visual artists and has collaborated with a who’s who of European and International musicians and performers including Annette Peacock, Phil Minton, Cecil Taylor, Masahiko Satoh, Charles Gayle, Lol Coxhill, Derek Bailey, Alan Silva, Keith Rowe, Evan Parker, Josef Nadj, Min Tanaka, Toshinori Kondo and Axel Dorner. He has toured and played concerts worldwide from Sydney to the Arctic, Tokyo to Belfast, New York to Beirut.
Koichi Makigami was the lead singer of Japan’s critically acclaimed rock group HIKASHU which was formed in 1978. He is Japan’s foremost practitioner of Tuvan throat-singing. For the last 20 years, he has served as a jurist for the Traditional category of the International Khoomei Contest and was the winner in the Contemporary category in 2017. Makigami is a maestro on the theremin, the world’s first electronic musical instrument. He studied under the instrument’s inventor, Robert B. Zagrezinov of the Republic of Bashkortostan. Makigami is also a producer of festivals and performance series.
Yumiko Tanaka studied gidayu recitation with the gidayu recitation artist and Living National Treasure Komanosuke Takemoto and was a disciple of the late Kinshi Nozawa, the bunraku (Japanese puppet theater) gidayu shamisen master who was also a Living National Treasure. As a disciple to the Showa-era master, the late fourth-generation Takemoto Koshijidayu, she received the name Tomi Tsuruzawa and became a performer within the world of classical performing arts. She would later diversify her repertoire to include diverse and experimental activities ranging from improvisational and contemporary music performances in Japan and abroad mainly playing the shamisen to the scoring of music for the theatre and movies. Her past collaborations with Japanese and foreign musicians include Carl Stone, Ned Rosenberg, John Russell, Accel Donor, Yuji Takahashi, Akira Sakata, Keiji Haino, Yoshihide Otomo, Kazuhisa Uchihashi, Seiichi Yamamoto, Motoharu Yoshizawa, Sabu Toyozumi and Yoshimitsu Ichiraku.
The concert began with a collaborative performance between Turner and Makigami, then one by Turner and Tanaka followed by a playful performance by Makigami and Tanaka. After a brief interval during which I got a chance to talk to Roger, the three of them returned to the stage for a final, 25 minute extravaganza of delightful, avant-garde . Roger gave me permission to film and the spectacle and share it with the world, and that is the video we present to you below. Enjoy!