On Saturday we proudly presented a free concert featuring young composers wrestling not only with melody, form, and instrumentation but also with how music can express feelings about home and recovery from disaster.
The concert, at the David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center, was the culmination of a week of exchange between eight 12–16-year-olds visiting us from Fukushima, Japan — site of the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami in 2011 — and participants in our Very Young Composers program.
The Fukushima composers created their own variations of the Japanese folk-song “Furusato,” which means “hometown,” in a program based on the Philharmonic’s Very Young Composers model. Each variation expressed the composer’s response to the earthquake and its aftermath. New York City participants created their works about their hometown — their feelings about New York City.
The new works were performed for a capacity audience by New York Philharmonic musicians and guest artists alongside the students from Fukushima. At the end came the hard part: saying goodbye to our Japanese guests, most of whom had spent the week living with the families of their New York peers.
Our 175th Anniversary season, starting in September, will explore the theme of “home” through The New World Initiative, a season-long, citywide project revolving around Dvořák’s New World Symphony and its connection to the theme of “home” through performances, education projects, and community outreach.
(Photo: Michael DiVito)