An unexpected but exquisite combination tastes unpredictable!

I am awkward to throw such a strange question abruptly, but how do you feel about drinking beer and milk at the same time? To me, it seems an impossibly bad combination. Searching the internet for the combination, however, may find a cocktail mixing dark beer with milk (what a wonderful world...). Now, the idea of the concert series “C×C” presented by Kanagawa Prefectural Hall since 2021 is to pick two composers, one from remarkable current composers in Japan and another from great ones in the past, and then put them in the contraposition.

In the past concert series, an exquisite combination of Akiko Yamane with John Cage drew attention. And this time Masakazu Natsuda with Schoenberg is a bit unexpected. Natsuda gives a strong impression that he belongs to the French tradition as he studied under composers like Griesey, and on the other hand, Schoenberg was burdened with rigorous German music. Putting these two composers together is like drinking a cocktail of beer and milk at first glance. In fact, the music each composer aims at differs a lot. Their music goes entirely in opposite directions; Schoenberg’s austere manner of composition gives priority to contrapuntal constructiveness devised from the twelve-tone music method and on the other Natsuda’s rich sound color employing microtones conveys even a sensual expression.

But that’s why this combination sounds attractive. In this concert program, their compositions of such same instrumentations as piano solos, duos for violin and piano, and vocal music accompanied by the ensemble are to be juxtaposed, and you will hear the difference between each voice of the two composers. The sharper the contrast between composers becomes, the more interesting the idea will be. Because of the sharp contrast, each identity would stand out.

Schoenberg is known for innovations in methods of composition like atonal, and it is interesting to see his Ode to Napoleon on the program which employs the twelve-tone music method with such tonal sound as major triads. Though it is rarely performed, it is interesting because you can find connections with Natsuda’s compositions which effectively incorporate consonance in the atonal context. Regarding the element of a narration part, which is characteristic of Ode to Napoleon, you will see another connection with Natsuda’s composition Shun-Ou. Shun-Ou is the one representing a precise sound replica of the Japanese nightingale’s warble (ho-hokekyo) by three flutes and its transformations, which conveys the musical version of the nightingale’s “narrative” (solo flute performance with the prerecorded sound resource is adopted for this concert).

I am looking forward to what a bit well-thought-out music cocktail of Natsuda and Schoenberg tastes like.


C×C (Sea by Sea) Composer’s Journey to Visit Composer vol. 5
Masakazu Natsuda x Arnold Schoenberg [150th Anniversary of Birth]

January 13 (Sat.), 2024 at the Small Hall, Kanagawa Kenmin Hall, Yokohama
Open / Start: 14:30 / 15:00

Masakazu Natsuda: Wave ~ Dannoura (1997) / Elegy (2022) / Beautiful sunset (2023 / new edition premiered) / Shun-Ou (2013 / flute + pre-recorded flute version premiered) / New work (commissioned work / premier by Kanagawa Kenmin Hall)
A. Schoenberg: Suite op. 25 (1921-23) / Fantasy op. 47 (1949) / Third movement “Litany” from String Quartet No. 2 op. 10 (1907-08) / Ode to Napoleon op. 41 (1942)

■Performing artists
JEONG Inae, flute / ISHIGAMI Mayuko, violin / KAWAMURA Ayane, violin / KAI Fumiko, viola / NISHIYA Makito, Cello / SUDO Chiharu, piano / AKIYAMA Tomoki, piano / KUDO Akane, soprano / MATSUDAIRA Takashi, baritone / ARIMA Sumihisa, electronics

Ticket Kanagawa 0570-015-415 (Reception hours: 10:00-18:00)
*Preschoolers can not be admitted.
*If you are traveling with a wheelchair or assistance dog, please contact Ticket Kanagawa in advance and make a reservation.
*If you need a childcare service, please contact Kanagawa Kemnin Hall in advance and make a reservation.

■For further information about “C×C”