Final Weeks of Summer in Japan
On Sunday I attended the 48th annual Osaka prefectural wind band competition (48回大阪府吹奏楽コンクール) in Minoh, Japan. As expected, the bands there were outstanding, and I think the adjudicators also did an excellent job. Particularly memorable were performances of Jun Nagao’s Reminiscence by the Miki Wind Philharmonie and of Masamichi Amano’s The Sea’s Aurora by the Minoh Youth Band. The bands that received the highest awards at this contest will advance to the regional competition, and those who receive the highest awards at that event will advance to the national level. Since the end of 2004, my research has suggested that the All-Japan Band Association's annual national contest is probably the world's largest music competition in terms of the number of contestants (over 14,000 bands, with a recently estimated total of 800,000 competing musicians). Nowadays, many music scholars in Japan and abroad seem to agree that there appear to be no larger music competitions in the world.
Here is a link to the final results from the Osaka-level event:
Next week I am visiting the headquarters of Yamaha, Kawai, the Keishicho Museum, Showakan Reading Room, Finnish Institute in Japan (at the Embassy of Finland in Tokyo), and Professors at Tokyo Gakugei University and Yokohama National University.
It is a pretty busy schedule, but I expect to acquire some interesting new information and make progress on planning for future research projects.