This performance focused on the traditional repertoire of solo pieces for shakuhachi called Koten-Honkyoku, considered the starting point for shakuhachi music. Obama performed honkyoku resulting from years of study by the late, great player/teacher Katsuya Yokoyama, using flutes of different lengths in accordance with the motifs. By using three different types of flute (the contemporary shakuhachi, old shakuhachi and jinashi shakuhachi) in different ways, Obama brought even more depth to the pieces and the program. Obama was accompanied by Toshimitsu Ishikawa, who taught Obama for more than twenty years. Obama’s former teacher came up from Kobe to join him on stage, treating the audience to a “teacher and student” joint performance.
Obama trained under Toshimitsu Ishikawa in Kinko-ryū Shakuhachi and the Koten-Honkyoku. He graduated from the NHK Hogaku Gino-sha Ikusei-kai course for hogaku (Japanese music) musicians, and won the Second Annual Shakuhachi Newcomer Competition. Obama had a period of study in New York as a fellow of the Asian Cultural Council (ACC). He has been invited to many international music festivals including the International Shakuhachi Festival, and has performed in over 35 countries. As well as his work as a solo musician with the honkyoku repertoire and his original compositions, Obama participates in various ensembles including “TAKiO BAND” led by Takio Ito. He has also released six CDs including LOTUS POSITION with Yosuke YAMASHITA. Obama is a part-time lecturer at Gakushuin University
MUSICASA, Shibuya City, Tokyo