Koto, Electronics, Voice
A virtuoso of the traditional Japanese zither known as koto, Michiyo Yagi has devoted much of her career to making music that sounds simultaneously ancient and futuristic—developing extended techniques and incorporating electronics, but also preserving the uniquely resonant character of the instrument in its most primal form. For her Pierre Boulez Saal debut, she is joined by three extraordinary musicians in a program of compositions and improvisations. The first set will feature Yagi in a duo with Japanese composer Dai Fujikura on synthesizer, performing music based on their 2022 album Bibi. Norwegians Eivind Aarset and Jan Bang, both longtime collaborators of Yagi, will be heard in the program’s second half, which blends Yagi’s koto with Aarset’s electric guitar and Bang’s live sampling and remixing.
The ensemble’s tour is supported by the Japan Foundation.