Kashiwazaki City in Niigata Prefecture is on the coast, right across the sea from Sado Island. In July this year, a brand new venue opened there called Kashiwazaki City Performing Arts Center.
Kashiwazaki is in an area that was greatly damaged by the Chuetsu Earthquake in 2004 and the Chuetsu Offshore Earthquake in 2007. The former Citizen's Hall was damaged by the Chuetsu Offshore Earthquake and could no longer be used. Five years on, all eyes are on the opening of this new hall as a project that marks the city's recovery from these natural disasters.
We are delighted to announce that Kodo was recently invited to take part in the Center's projects as a Partnership Artist.
On September 9, we held a concert at the new center to commemorate its opening, and in future we plan to hold further performances, teach local groups, and hold concerts out and about in the community. Alongside Kodo, composer Shin-ichiro Ikebe, who has a profound connection to Kashiwazaki and Niigata Prefecture, and a young group of performers called the Toki String Quartet are also taking part in this project.
For a while now, Kashiwazaki and Ogi, our hometown on Sado, have held various exchange projects as "Meoto Sister Cities." Also, recently we have welcomed numerous Kashiwazaki City elementary school groups at the Sado Island Taiko Centre during their field trips to Sado Island.
From now on, we look forward to exchange with our fellow partnership artists as well as cooperating on various revival events with the Center, including ones that will help aid the recovery of areas affected by the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake.