Press release

"japanese traditional music & improvisation"
held at the national art gallery, islamabad


Islamabad: May 23, 2015

The Embassy of Japan in collaboration with the Pakistan National Council of the Arts and Pakistan-Japan Cultural Association arranged a Japanese Traditional Music & Improvisation which was presented by a Japanese artist Ms. SUMIE KANEKO at the auditorium of the National Art Gallery on Saturday 23rd May 2015.
Ms. SUMIE KANEKO is Japanese Koto & Shamisen player as well as Jazz singer and songwriter. She has been recognized as a pioneer by her chromatic use of the Japanese instruments Koto and Shamisen. She has been collaborating with many of the world’s instrumentalists and has arrived from New York to collaborate with some Pakistani musicians.
Koto is a traditional Japanese stringed musical instrument, which is similar to the Pakistani Santoor or Swarmandal. The Shamisen is a three stringed instrument similar to a Banjo.

Ms. SUMIE KANEKO studied Japanese traditional music at Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music then studied Jazz vocal at Berklee College of Music in 2006. She started playing Koto when she was five years old. She was the first Shamisen player who won Pulitzer Prize Paula Vogel’s “The Long Christmas Ride Home”, and has collaborated with many of world instrumentalists such as Kenny Endo, Kaoru Watanabe etc.  

Ambassador Hiroshi Inomata while welcoming the guests said Japanese culture and traditions have long been deep rooted in day-to-day lives of Japanese. “One of the distinctive features of the Japanese culture is the way in which all the artistic elements from different local regions co-exist in peace and harmony, which has a strong influence on its traditional music”, said Ambassador Inomata.

Ambassador Inomata thanked Ms. Sumie Kaneko for coming to Pakistan and showcasing her talent of playing this unique Japanese music that is evocative of traditional Japan. He also thanked the Pakistani musicians who collaborated with the Japanese musician Ms. Sumie Kaneko. (END)

Performance at Ambassador's residence on May 22, 2015

Sumie Kaneko Concert at the National Arts Gallery, Islamabad on May 23, 2015