11 June 2013

Etsuko Chida, Classical Japanese Koto

Etsuko Chida beautifully plays koto and sings on her album Koto Kumiuta on the polished Shskh label. The compositions she performs on this album are from 900 - 1200 AD.

Track one is also available on the FMA:

The label Accords Croisés tells us:
Etsuko Chida is born in Sapporo, the main town of Hokkaido, the northern island of the japanese archipelago.
When she was five, she began to learn how to play koto and singing at the Yamada School, whose current master is Yemoto Hagioka Shoin, living in Tokyo. In Sapporo, Etsuko Chida followed the rigorous traditionnal teaching of three of the most important koto virtuosos, Kaga Toyomasa, Yokota Toyochika and Sanagi Okatoyo. After long years of studying, Etsuko Chida was given the right of having a Natori, a professional name : Toyochi Eka.
Etsuko Chida kneels on the stage carpet with all the grace imposed by the Kimono and bends over her noble wood-ivory-nylon-made companion. With precise gestures, she adjusts the position of the bridges and the tension of the strings, then caresses them to extract their crystalline sound.
Inspired during the 7th century of the Chinese Cheng, the koto has become, as centuries went by, one of the most representative instruments of the traditional japanese music. Many styles of playing this zither have been developped through the years. Etsuko belongs to the Yamada School which, during the 18th century, added the narrative singing to the deepest values of instrumental music, privileging the use of koto rather than the Shamisen lute which was the dominant instrument at that time.

Music License: © Creative Commons BY-NC
Image: from official website
Artist Location: Japan

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