The debut concerts for winners of last year’s Tokyo International Music Competition for Conducting were held on May 18 (Sat) at Aichi Prefectural Art Theater Concert Hall, and on May 22 (Wed) at Tokyo Opera City Concert Hall. Third-place winner Masaru Kumakura, second-place winner Kanade Yokoyama and first-place winner Nodoka Okisawa all conducted, while Yuzo Toyama, the head of the judging committee, gave opening remarks.
The Nagoya Philharmonic was the orchestra for the Aichi performance. For members of their generation, all three conductors have a wealth of experience. However, this was the first time any of them conducted together, and the mood on the first day of rehearsals was tense. With help from the orchestra, the tension gradually dissolved, and by the end of rehearsals the atmosphere was friendly. The concert itself was a rousing success, with each conductor fully displaying his or her own unique style.
The Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra was featured in the Tokyo performance. The concert attracted many people deeply connected to the world of music and the packed venue was rife with excitement. The orchestra responded to each conductor’s baton with magnificent performances, and the concert was a great success.
At final curtain call, the three conductors took the stage together, holding hands. This was a suggestion from the performers, conscious of the fact that this concert was made possible by all three competition winners. The three conductors prepared diligently for this performance, and as they joined hands in closing on stage the venue erupted in applause.
Please look forward to the future achievements of all three conductors.
Nagoya Performance Pieces
Brahms: The Tragic Overture, Op. 81 (Masaru Kumakura)
Hindemith: Symphonic Metamorphosis of Themes by Carl Maria von Weber (Kanade Yokoyama)
Prokofiev: Excerpts from Suites No. 1 and No. 2 of the ballet Romeo and Juliet (Nodoka Okisawa)
Tokyo Performance Pieces
Tchaikovsky: Overture-Fantasy “Romeo and Juliet” (Masaru Kumakura)
Kodály: Variations on a Hungarian Folksong (The Peacock) (Kanade Yokoyama)
Mendelssohn: Symphony No. 3 in A minor “Scottish” Op. 56 (Nodoka Okisawa)