Ryukyuan Fantasy for Euphonium and Tuba Quartet
ItoMusic / Brain
Premiered in July 2016
For Euphonium 1,2 and Tuba 1,2
Notes from composer
Ryoichi Wago is a Japanese poet who currently resides in Fukushima, where the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake had hit hard. He has since been the voice for the people of Fukushima, and the online publications of his works were a great sensation. In response, I have composed nearly forty songs as well as a cantata for chorus and an opera, “Ki-sho-ten-ten”. In my personal opinion, I think the power embedded in the words of Wago’s poetry has served as a torch for many souls right after the earthquake in 2011, and will still continue to light the paths of many hereafter.
Like a collage, I wove Wago’s poetry, the very words, and the spirit engraved in the words as well, into this composition. It is a piece about despair, hope, the future, love, the things we hold dear to our hearts, and the breath of life. The richness and delicacy of the wind orchestra, contrasts heavily with the voice’s imposing, yet tender presence.
It is neither an opera, nor a piece with a specific story to tell, but a composition that somewhat resembles a monodrama.
On another note, I would also like to express my heartfelt gratitude and delight for this opportunity, to write a piece which showcases the two genres I have long been engaged in ? wind orchestra music, and vocal music.
30 years has passed since “Festal Scenes”, a piece I have composed in lyrical style, by the request of Ominato Band of the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force. That piece can also be said to have been my debut masterpiece, and I cannot express how deep my emotions are when I think of how this piece serves as the fruit I have bore through a long journey.
Finally, in a bid to show my appreciation, this piece is dedicated to the Tokyo Band of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, Yukari Miyake, and Hiroyuki Tedzuka, with whom I have shared a long association with.