− Collaboration between the same generation in Japan and Ireland −
Article by Riko Matsuoka (Harpist & Organizer of the concerts)
I would like to introduce the Kinjo Gakuin Harp Ensemble today.
There are only a few high schools which have the clubs consisting of only harps like the Kinjo Gakuin Harp Ensemble in Japan.
The students of the Kinjo Gakuin Harp Ensemble and the Music Generation Laois Harp Ensemble are the same generation.
What the Irish musicians look forward to the most during the tour is the collaboration between them.
The fiddle player Dai Komatsu, the Irish harpists Shima Ohashi and Riko Matsuoka visited the Kinjo Gakuin last November.
The cheerful students of harp ensemble and the array of Irish harps welcomed us in their classroom.
Dai played the fiddle and explained the features of Irish music and the way of playing for the students.
Shima and Riko practiced the two pieces given by the Irish musicians with the students together.
The students learned Irish music and the way of playing with shining eyes. Time with them passed so quickly.
Please look forward to the collaborative concerts in Nagoya (Date: 18th of August, Venue: Higashi Cultural Playhouse) !
<Profile of the Kinjo Gakuin Harp Ensemble>
The Kinjo Gakuin Harp Ensemble was founded in 1975 by missionary M.I. Kelley, Mr. Eiji Kawai and Ms. Taeko Okajima and has become a pillar of Kinjo’s Christian education. In the 44 years since then, the spirit in which it was created has been joyously passed down from member to member to the current generation. Since 2014 we have welcomed graduate Yuriko Miyake as instructor/ coach. We have been practicing hard under her watchful guidance. At present there are 23 students in the Ensemble.
Our major performances take place at school for the Freshman Entrance Ceremony, the Culture Festival, the Christmas Service, as well as outside school at churches and hospitals and local area events and festivals. The Kinjo Gakuin Harp Ensemble remains one of only a few of its kind in all of Japan.