Sunday, January 22, 2012, 8 pm
Music Performance

With Yumiko Tanaka (musican, Tokyo) and Yoko Tawada (writer, Berlin)

Yumiko Tanaka (b. 1960 in Tokyo) has a master’s degree in Aesthetics and Art History at Tokyo University of Fine Arts and Music. She lives in Tokyo. Tanaka studied Gidayu recitation with the artist and national legend Komanosuke Takemoto and became a disciple of the Gidayu-shamisen master Kinshi Nozawa, who was also famous for his Bunraku puppet theater. Since her debut in 1981 in Tokyo, Tanaka has been pursuing a career not only as a traditional Shamisen player and singer of Japanese music, but also in contemporary music and theater. She performed together with the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic. Experimental works include collaborations with disc jockey Otomo Yoshihide, the guitarists Elliot Sharp, Kazuhisa Uchihashi and Seiichi Yamamoto, electro-musician Carl Stone and the saxophonists Ned Rothenberg, John Zorn and Naruyoshi Kukuchi. In 2004, Tanaka received the New York Times Award and the New York Innovative Theatre Award for the play dogugaeshi by Basil Twist.

Yoko Tawada (b. 1960 in Tokyo) studied literature in Tokyo, Hamburg and Zurich, graduating with a PhD. Since 2006 she lives in Berlin. Tawada writes in German and Japanese. For her publications, she received numerous awards, including the Akutagawa Prize for Literature (1993), the Adalbert von Chamisso Prize (1996), the Tanizaki Prize (2003) and the Goethe Medal (2005). She published amongst others
Nur da wo du bist da ist nichts (poems and prose, 1987), Die Kranichmaske die bei Nacht strahlt (play, 1993), Talisman (literary essays, 1996), Verwandlungen (Tübinger Poetikvorlesungen, 1998), Opium für Ovid. Ein Kopfkissenbuch für 22 Frauen (prose, 2000), Was ändert der Regen an unserem Leben? (opera project with Peter Ablinger, 2005).