Wednesday, November 19, 2014

City Fest

(Tree's up again.)

On the 15th, I went up to Amupla to see if there was anything going on. There were two events, actually. One was an arts and crafts fair in the plaza next to the bus parking area. The other was something billed as a "City Matsuri". Most of the booths contained displays and objects for sale from various NPO groups. A few of them were handing out cherry tomatoes and small samples of tea.

You could play with clay (nendo) at one booth.

Not a lot of people out today. The sky was clear, but the temps were a bit cool (maybe in the 50's).

I didn't see a performance schedule, so I don't know which groups were playing on stage. One was just leaving as I arrived, and the instruments stayed on the tables as the second group took their places. The instrument is called a "taishogoto", or "Taisho harp". It's named after the Taiso era (1912-1926), when it was created, and it combines a kind of typewriter keyboard with piano strings. The strings are plucked with the right hand, and the left plays the keyboard, which frets the strings, changing pitch. These are an electric version, from Suzuki, called the Tokumatsu. The players seemed to go out of tune, or slow down a bit, occasionally, but they sounded remarkably good for the number of people all playing together like this.

Taisho Harps

Direct youtube link

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