Kiyoshige Koyama

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Biography

Born: 1914   Country: Japan  
Kiyoshi Koyama was born in Nagano Prefecture in 1914. His composition teachers included Kornei Abe, a student of composer/conductor Klaus Pringsheim, and Tomojiro Ikenouchi. He didn't turn to composing music until he was almost 30, and although he was strongly nationalistic and influenced by such figures as his contemporary Akira Ifukube, whose work was heavily based on traditional material, Koyama's musical voice didn't emerge until after Read more Japan's imperialist period was over. Known in the postwar era for such works as Shinano-bayashi for Orchestra (1946), Koyama went on to become one of the leading musical figures of his generation, composing one opera, Sanshyo-Dayu, and numerous orchestral works, including the symphonic suite Masque of Noh Play during the 1950s, Hinauta No. 1 for Orchestra and Hinauta No. 2 for Orchestra in the 1970s, as well as pieces for solo piano and chamber ensemble. One of Koyama's most popular and successful works was Kobiki-uta (A Woodcutter's Song), a hauntingly beautiful piece for orchestra, with a striking part for cello. It was derived from a traditional woodcutter's work song heard in Kyushu, western Japan, and the 1957 vintage work is a hybrid mixing Japanese folk sources, timbres, and textures with the shape and substance of western orchestral music traditions. At the outset of the new century, Koyama's work retained its following in Japan, with leading conductors and orchestra performing his music. Read less

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