Composer’s Notes

Hideaki Kuribayashi


Emu / 絵夢 / Picture Dreams

Hideaki Kuribayashi 栗林秀明 / 1976

Emu was inspired by the sound of the late autumn wind at the mountain temple, Katsuoji; the wind blowing through the fields and mountains at dusk. The composer is noted for his skillful use of rhythms not found in traditional Japanese music, while retaining the unique timbrel qualities of each instrument.

Form: koto, shakuhachi

Isu / 椅子 / Chair

Hideaki Kuribayashi 栗林秀明 / 1992

This work takes a look at inorganic material-that which can live by itself-in the midst of the hustle and bustle of the city. 1st movement-The heat shimmer on the periphery of that which makes up a person’s heat. 2nd movement-The noise and rhythm which are given off by people who are indifferent to their surroundings. The image of an inorganic MacIntosh chair appeared during the composition of this work, hence the title. (commissioned by the Sawai Koto School) [English Notes: Anne Prescott]

Form: four kotos, two 17-string kotos

Kaze Watari / 風・わたり / Cross winds

Hideaki Kuribayashi 栗林秀明 / 1990

There are several type of sound effects for koto which are used in classical works, but for this work the composer created completely new sound effects. The introduction begins with these sound effects and then it diminuendos to tone clusters which then lead into the melody. This melody paints the caprices of the wind as it changes color and is extinguished, and the undulations of the blowing wind are pursued in the following melodies. This work is a quartet in to movements without pause. (commissioned by Sawai Koto School Seminar) [English Notes: Anne Prescott]

Form: four kotos

Keyaki / 欅 / Zelkova Tree

Hideaki Kuribayashi 栗林秀明 / 1992

This work reflects the essence of the four seasons as experienced when one lingers in the peaceful tree-lined streets. It is astir with the undulating sounds of the supple tree branches fluttering in the breeze. Drops are filled with unhurried, gentle vibration. commissioned by Genyo Kobayashi -English Notes: Anne Prescott

Form: koto, 17-string koto

Umi e / 海へ / To the Sea

Hideaki Kuribayashi 栗林秀明 / 1991

This is a short piece which was composed for a recital by Kenny Endo, a traditional Japanese drummer, in which the composer participated. [English Notes: Anne Prescott]

Form: 17-string koto