opera.jpg Niibori Guitar Grand Orchestra consisted of 114 members had international goodwill concerts in Sydney Opera House on March 23, 1996 from 7:00 p.m., and in Melbourne Concert Hall on March 24 from 8:00 p.m.

Niibori Guitar Orchestra was formed by Dr. Hiroki Niibori in 1957. This orchestra's distinctive feature is that they use about 20 types of original guitars developed by him. These are; piccolo guitar, sopranino guitar, soprano guitar, alto guitar, bass guitar, contrabass guitar, guitarron and various types of cembalo guitars. Each guitar has 6 courses and perfect intervals, and the ratio of traditional prime guitar. Therefore, these conditions make it easy for everyone to be familiar with the guitars. With the England concert tour in 1974 as a start, Niibori Guitar Orchestra has accomplished international concert tours in France, Spain, Singapore, Taiwan, China, Hawaii and so on, and they were highly evaluated in each country.

In 1992, Niibori Guitar Orchestra was invited by Chinese government and had concerts that com-memorated the 20th anniversary of the normalization of the diplomatic relations between China and Japan. 80 members of orchestra presented a magnificent performance there and was applauded enthusiastically by people in China.

This time, a total of114 players with more than 200 of various types of guitars, 15 Japanese drums, 2 kegs, kyoukan, surigane, timpani, gong, 3 synthesizers, xylophone, 30 keyboard guitars, 30 hand bells and etc. visited Australia and showed a great performance.

Program consisted of two parts. In the first part, Niibori Guitar Orchestra conducted by Yukifumi Murakami presented their standard repertories. Especially, their popular concertos, 'Variations on Sakura' (Michio Miyagi), 'Guitar Concerto A major op.30' (Giuliani), and solo performance by Koohiro Sasozaki 'Passagio & Presto' from Suite No.1 for Lute (Bach) with 12-strings prime cembalo guitar, and "Un Blanc Jour D'un Charton~Tempest" (R.Stolz~Beethoven) by a quintet were favorably received. (See the program on Oct. issue of 1995 or Feb. issue of 1996.)

In the second part, all movements of 'Spring' of a symphonic poem 'The God of SAI' as PLERA was performed by Niibori Guitar Grand Orchestra. Dr. H. Niibori, the composer of this symphonic poem and the originator of the guitar orchestra conducted it.

'The God of SAI' is a musical pageant that wishes humankind's happiness in the coming centuries and describes the beautiful nature of Ohshima-mura in Joetsu. It takes 45 minutes long to play it. Scene 4 (the 4th movement) that makes full use of Japanese drums and guitar orchestra, is the highlight of this musical pageant. Magnificent sounds created by the guitar orchestra and Japanese drums describe the hardships in life and pure sounds by hand bells after the roaring sound announce the coming of peace. He expressed his message that 'Happiness will come to anyone who has done one's best' in it. Though players perform it in Japanese traditional costume, the per-formance by Niibori Method is easy to be understood by people in any countries. (If you are interested in a symphonic poem 'The God of SAI', see Feb. and Mar. issues of 1995.)

PLERA (stands for player's opera) which was originated by Dr. H. Niibori, is a kind of synthetic arts for the 21st century consists of performance, sound and stage effect. In PLERA, players step up onto the stage from the orchestra pit and express the music with their whole bodies in the lights and sounds. Unless lots of specialists in each field unit and make full use of their abilities and passions, it is possible to realize the music.

This time, all preparation of the stage and sound effects were done by the Australian staff except for the chief director. The staff of Opera House spent 2 days for the setting of the concert, and to our surprise, their professional spirits remodeled part of the world famous Opera House. The concert was succeeded in cooperation with the staff in Australia. In this meaning, this event was exactly a goodwill concert for both of us.

And on the day before the concert, the most popular TV station in Australia 'Channel 9' introduced the performance of Niibori Guitar Orchestra.

As the result of lots of people's cooperation, Sydney Opera House (largest hall) was full with about 1,000 audience and the concert closed with a standing ovation and enthusiastic applause.

On the following day of the concert, news papers and radio programs picked up the concert and highly praised it.

Melbourne concert on March 24 was succeeded as great as Opera House's. And lots of guitarists, guitar craftsmen and people concerning music who knew the success of the concert at Opera House visited a musical director, Dr. H. Niibori's dressing room one after another. This concert tour became a historic event that made Niibori Method be the center of music world.

Niibori Guitar Orchestra has been promoting world peace through music. By this concert tour, it surely built a bridge of peace between Australia and Japan, we believe.

In this issue, we picked out the original guitars by Niibori Method as a special feature article. If you are interested in the guitars and need detailed information about them, or planning to purchase it, please contact Niibori Guitar Music Academy, Musical instruments department.

For questions, advice & requests about Monthly Harmony,

Niibori Guitar Music Academy, Editorial Office

143-14 Fujisawa, Fujisawa-shi, Kanagawa-ken,
251-0052 Japan
Phone: +81-466-23-8338 / Fax: +81-466-23-9337

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