Ensemble East and PearsonWidrig DanceTheater
Toshio Funakawa – "Quartet" for Shakuhachi, Two Kotos and Cello
Akira Nishimura – "Threnody" for Solo Cello
James Nyoraku Schlefer – "Sankyoku No. 1" for Shakuhachi, Koto and Bass Koto
James Nyoraku Schlefer – "Oashisu (Oasis)" for Shakuhachi, Koto, Cello and Percussion with PEARSONWIDRIG DANCETHEATER
This work was commissioned by the American Music Center Live Music for Dance Program with additional funding from the O'Donnell Green Music and Dance Foundation
Oashisu (Oasis) is what happened while reuniting after a rough year of injuries and loss and separation, when all were in need of a vacation from themselves and ready to connect to a place as free of habit as possible. The Japanese concepts of "ma" (a creative space in which the essence of artistic relationships are made tangible) and "kansha" (simultaneous gratitude and appreciation) provided the framework for this dance of continual tectonic shifts, seismic surprises and deep calm.
- PearsonWidrig DanceTheater
Ensemble East is a chamber music group that plays Japanese instruments, specifically koto, bass koto, shamisen and shakuhachi. The group has toured throughout the US, South America and the Caribbean, performing on concert series and at festivals, museums, and numerous colleges and universities. Each individual member has a distinguished international performing and recording career. Ensemble East performs the classical music of Japan's Edo period as well as modern and contemporary ensemble music for Japanese instruments. Featuring James Nyoraku Schlefer, shakuhachi, Masayo Ishigure, koto, bass koto and shamisen, Charles Tang, koto.
Founded in 1987, PEARSONWIDRIG DANCETHEATER has an international following for work that transforms the familiar into the mysterious, the subversive, and the intimate. Creating and presenting "American dance theater at its funniest and most compelling" (NZZ, Switzerland), PWDT has toured throughout the US, Europe, Latin America, and Asia. In New York City, their work has been produced by Lincoln Center, the Joyce Theater, the City Center Fall for Dance Festival, DTW, the Kitchen, Central Park SummerStage, Danspace Project, P.S. 122, The 92nd Street Y Harkness Dance Project, and Dancing in the Streets. They are the recipients of generous financial support from the NEA, NYSCA, NYFA, NPN, the Rockefeller, Altria, Harkness, Jerome, Joyce Mertz-Gilmore, O'Donnell-Green, Swiss Center and Sequoia Foundations, the American Music Center, the Asian Cultural Council, and Arts International.
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