This month, we'll report the Niibori Guitar Orchestra Concert '99. It took place in Joetsu Bunka Kaikan in Joetsu on July 28, Nirayama Jidai Gekijo in Izu on August 1, Yokohama Minato Mirai Hall in Yokohama on August 3, and Tokyo Opera City Concert Hall in Tokyo on August 4, 1999.

This time, we invited Ms. Kerstin Eisenbarth from Germany and Niibori Guitar Orchestra expected to have a joint concert with her. But she was suddenly taken ill one week before the concert and couldn't come to Japan. It was a big problem, because lots of audience and members of the guitar orchestra looked forward to her performance and the program had been printed and published already... The orchestra changed the program in hurry and decided to carry out the concert tour. Solo of the main performance, 'Concerto in A-major Op.30 for guitars' was played by Mitsuji Nishikawa and Kazuyuki Terada instead of her. This double solo was praised highly in Niibori Guitar Orchestra concert tour in Australia (Sydney & Melbourne) in 1996. Also this time, their performance was well received by the audience. In the questionnaire after the concert, we could hear the impressions of the audience like 'When I was noticed that Ms. Eisenbarth won't appear on the stage, I was so disappointed. But I was so satisfied by today's concert' and 'At the ending of the concert, I forgot about Ms. Eisenbarth and I sent the orchestra off with a big hand'. The key of this success was everyone's understanding and we all appreciate your kindness from the bottom of our hearts.

Well, let's talk about this time's most popular number 'Chaconne' (BWV1004) played for the first time. It is a masterpiece of J. S. Bach and originally solo music for the violin, but since the great guitarist Andres Segovia played it, it became to be highly estimated as a guitar solo music. Arrangement for the guitar orchestra was done by Mitsuji Nishikawa based on F. Busoni's arrangement (1886-1924, composer and pianist) for the piano solo. In Japan, 'Chaconne' is known as a music for guitar solo, but except for enthusiastic guitar fans, it is popular as the most boring and longest number in a classical concert. But this guitar orchestra version caused a great sensation and was applauded by even audience who watched a classical concert for the first time. What Bach wanted to convey to audience was expressed brilliantly by our Niibori Method original guitars. Also Mitsuji Nishikawa's conducting was excellent and well expressed the spiritual message of the number. Dr. Hiroki Niibori who instructed him said 'It's miracle that he could master such difficult conducting perfectly in a short time'.

Niibori Guitar Orchestra has a great repertories peculiar to it, for example, an original symphonic poem 'The God of SAI' (H. Niibori), 'Concerto grosso Op.6-10' (G. F. Handel), 'Guitar concerto D-major' (A. Vivaldi), 'Concerto for flute and harp' (W. A. Mozart), 'Variations on Sakura' (M. Miyagi), 'Geschichte aus dem Wiener Wald' (J. Strauss), 'Toccata & Fuga' (J. S. Bach) and so on. 'Chaconne' may be a match or better repertory for them. The score was carried on September issue of this magazine, so please try it if you have a guitar orchestra.

Well, the story of 'Chaconne' became very long though, well received number was not only 'Chaconne'. 'Concerto in A-major Op.30 for guitars' (M. Giuliani), and 'Remembrance of Alhambra' (F. Tarrega, arr. H. Niibori, concerto version) played as an encore were also well received. Niibori Guitar Ensemble recorded 'Remembrance of Alhambra' guitar ensemble version (arr. H. Niibori) when they visited Spain for the concert tour, and the performance was contained as the first number in a cassette tape 'Typical music in Spain' that is sold in a souvenir shop in the Alhambra palace. Although it was arranged like a concerto grosso, the arrangement made full use of both solo and the orchestra's attractions. Soloists were Mitsuji Nishikawa and Kazuyuki Terada. This score will be carried on this magazine before long.

'Baion de Gude' (P. Bellinati, arr. M. Taruishi) played by Niibori Guitar Men's Sextet consisted of young top players was very sharp and rhythmical and their action was so enjoyable, and was highly applauded by the audience. Also, 'Concerto for Electrical Guitar' based on a theme of 'Simphony Nr.9' (Beethoven, arr. & solo Kengo Momose) played in Joetsu was well received. It was first time for the orchestra to have a full orchestra concert in Joetsu.

Concerts in Yokohama and Tokyo were held in great halls that have excellent acoustics, and the second movement of 'Concert for harp' (G. F. Handel) fascinated audience with the beautiful sound.

Again we do appreciate your warm support and applause in spite of the sudden accident.

Now, our PLERA project is producing CD & video tape of these concerts. As soon as they are completed, we'll announce you on this page.
(Refer to the color lead article from page 2)

For questions, advice & requests about Monthly Harmony,

Niibori Guitar Music Academy, Editorial Office

143-14 Fujisawa, Fujisawa-shi, Kanagawa, 251-0052 Japan
Tel: +81-466-23-8338

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