Blooming

Black and White Earth

Folk Songs On Piano

"...To satisfy my curiosity, I began to play the two songs at the same time....WOW! They merged beautifully. More than one would ever have imagined. I was extremely excited to feel the cultures crossing in my hands through music. That was the moment that this project was born."

 

hat Is Project "Blooming"?

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“Blooming” is the cultural project using music that I founded in 2016. In this project, I collect folk songs and children's songs from all over the world and arrange them into concert-style pieces.

 

As a Japanese artist, “Blooming” provided a unique and joyful opportunity to introduce Japanese culture while also appealing to the value of cultural exchange through music. 

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Even though I live in America for 10 years now,  my heart is always in Japan and I am proud of     Japanese culture.

Tanuki Pup - Hungarian Folk Song & Japanese Folk Song
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(Excerpt) Song for Tanabata Cultural Crossing Event in Boston, Japan x America x Scotland
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The name 

Blooming

"I want to be a pianist that colorful flowers bloom on the World map where she plays...!"

That was my dream when I was still 6 years old.

know it is a very abstract dream, but colorful flowers were the symbol of happiness for me back then, so 6-year-old me was thinking that she just wanted to spread the happiness through my performance! I don't want to forget this inocent dream I had when I was a child. so I named my project "Blooming."

ow Was This Project Born?

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In my first three years of living in America, I moved every 6 months. In that time, I shared houses with 17 different people who are all from different countries! While I happily lived in the “mini earth,” I realized that the world would be a better place if everyone was kind, accepted their differences, and enhanced their own inner beauty for each other.

 

I was looking for a way to express this wonderful awareness, and through “Blooming,” I hope I have.

 

One day in a practice room, I was improvising a popular Japanese folk song, “Red Dragonfly”, and noticed that the start of this song and the American folksong, “Amazing Grace,” shared the same melody! To satisfy my curiosity, I began to play the two songs at the same time....WOW! They merged beautifully. More than one would ever have imagined. I was extremely excited to feel the cultures crossing in my hands through music. That was the moment that this project was born. After several revisions of this accidental improvisation, “Boston Sky’s Red Dragonfly” became the current version that I place at the opening of my first CD "Blooming - Folk Songs on Piano."

My favorite Japanese Poem

“A Bird and A Bell and I”

 

Even if I spread my arms

I cannot fly in the sky at all.

But the bird that can fly 

Cannot run on the ground as fast as I.

 

Even if I shake my body,

I cannot produce pretty sounds,

But the bell that can ring 

Doesn’t know as many songs as I.

 

The bell and the bird and I--

All are different and all are good.

 

​Misuzu Kaneko

Boston's Sky and Red Dragonfly

from the CD "Blooming - Folk Songs on Piano"

You will hear two songs in this song: Amazing Grace and Red Dragonfly (Japanese Folk Song)

♪The Trio version: Soprano, Tenor, and Piano from HERE (jump to the Video Page).

 

hy Folk Songs?

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My love for the folk songs began  back when I was 2 years old! By  the age of 4, I was able to sing more than 200 songs by memory!

 

 But when I heard Russian and     Spanish traditional folk songs  at a cultual exchange event that my elementary school held, I fell in love with the exotic melodies.  Since then, I have been looking for my favorite melodies from all  over the World.

No matter where you come from, you probably know at least one folk song or children’s song from your country, or possibly even from an unfamiliar country or culture. Your parents might have sang one as you were going to sleep, you might have heard your grandparents were singing one, or you might have heard someone playing one on the street. Many folk songs illustrate the scenes in daily life, they were born in each culture. That's why I think folk songs are one of the closest music to our heart. These simple songs always live with us, live near us, and live in our community. I strongly believe that music brings people together and makes the world "ONE." 

In Poland, enjoying mini improvisation session with a  Jazz pianist, Cliff Monear.

I jumped on to the stage, and took  part in his live concert without  submitting my entry beforehand!      FUN time!

 

here Can I Listen?

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Click each to jump to medias.

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G

oals and My Intention.  

As mentioned above, I find beauty in coexistence of multiple cultures. I strongly believe that when people feel safe to express their culture, we could support, inspire and enhance our life to each other. Then the World will be a much better place. 

However, the world is still full of obstacles that are blocking some of us from appreciating each other. Some people don't even have a chance to take over and hand down the beautiful culture that their ancestors have created.

 

Racism, child soldiers, forced laborers, discriminations and stavations...all those things prevent them from keeping their culture, let alone sharing that culture with the world. 

 

It is extremely sad that we see all that kind of news every single day. Children are especially innocent. They should be able to smile like they are sure that tomorrow will come. It’s painful to just imagine if my future kids, my nieces, or all of my students had to go through the same experience as many of those who live under constant fear today.

I am just a little human being on the Earth that might not have enough power to change the World, but all we have to do is do what we can do! 

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(Excerpt) "Since the Blue Sunset" for Piano & Cello, Spanish, Romanian, and Japanese Folk Songs - Cello, Jeremiah Barcus
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My three promises with this project:

 

Keep Sending the Message for Diversity

I will always taking a small step towards realizing to make a place where people could live in multiple cultures safely and gratefully. As an individual pianist with this project, I will keep searching, combining and performing folk songs from all over the World.

 

More Collaborations

So far, I only have one song that is an ensemble (Cello and Piano). I played one of the songs in trio as a special version (you could watch trio version of "Boston's Sky and Red Dragonfly" from the Video page) for a live concert, but it's not on CD. For the second CD, I would love to bring in more artists! Flutist, Violinist, Marimbist, and Tronbonist...I want to involve more of my wonderful colleagues and friends!

Donate 10% of Profit

10% of any kind of profit I earn from this project, I shall donate to charities such as UNICEF and Terra Renaissance. At this moment, the profit comes through CDs and concert tours - planning to release the second CD and also CD tours in 2022 and 2023 in Japan and USA, and hopefully more in the future. 

My first Blooming performance in Europe, France, 2018.

Recording Blooming 1st CD at Skillman Music, NYC.