Since its establishment, Reigakusha has worked on Gagaku works by contemporary composers as well as the revival of obsolete pieces for performance. In a two-part structure comprising revived obsolete works and classical pieces with contemporary Gagaku pieces incorporating new styles, this performance shed light on Gagaku’s diverse appeal. The first part featured “Hyojo Soko-no-kyu,” a modified arrangement by Reigakusha founder SHIBA Sukeyasu of the classical Gagaku masterpiece “Soko-no-kyu,” and a revived version of the obsolete Korai Gakkyoku piece, “Koma-inu.”
The second part showcased the SHIBA compositions “Guwa” and “Bugakuhu-kumikyoku.” “Bugakuhu-kumikyoku” is very rare in that it uses traditional Japanese instruments as well as Gagaku instruments; and since it also entails a large ensemble of performers there are few opportunities for it to be performed.
A Gagaku performance ensemble formed in 1985 by the late Sukeyasu Shiba. Currently led by musical director Mayumi Miyata. Since its launch, the group has not only engaged in the performance of the traditional Gagaku repertoire but has also been proactive in the revival of obsolete numbers, the reproduction of/ performance with millennia-old musical instruments preserved at the ancient Imperial storehouse, Shosoin, and the performance of contemporary compositions. To date, it has commissioned new works from composers including Joji Yuasa, Toshi Ichiyanagi, Shin-ichiro Ikebe, Michio Kitazume, Toshio Hosokawa, Toshiro Saruya, Nao Isaji and Akiko Yamane. Toru Takemitsu’s “In an Autumn Garden” has been an important part of Reigakusha’s repertoire from the beginning, racking up repeat performances in Japan and overseas. In 2002 the group won the Special Prize of Kenzo Nakajima Music Award. “Reigakusha Gagaku Concert – In an Autumn Garden” received the 16th Keizo Saji Prize. In 2020 it won the 50th ENEOS Music Awards – Japanese Traditional Music Division.
General Incorporated Association REIGAKUSHA
Kioi Hall, Chiyoda City, Tokyo