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No. she024June 17, 2021

Suntory Hall Summer Festival 2021
August 22 – 28, 2021 at Suntory Hall, Tokyo

Suntory Hall Summer Festival 2021 will take place on 22 - 28 August. Initiated in 1987, this annual celebration of contemporary music now forms an important part of Tokyo’s summer music scene. Every August, leading musicians in the field from both Japan and abroad gather at Suntory Hall to present the cutting-edge music of our current age. As in previous years, the Summer Festival is formed of three different strands: (1) “The Producer Series”, (2) “Theme Composer” as part of the “Suntory Hall International Program for Music Composition” series, and (3) “The Competition of Yasushi Akutagawa Suntory Award for Music Composition”, an award given to the most outstanding work premiered in Japan in the previous year.
This year’s program is as follows:

  1. The Producer Series: Ensemble Intercontemporain (Music Director: Matthias Pintscher)
    In this series, each year a different producer is invited to curate a series of contemporary music from his/her unique point of view. This year’s producer is the exceptional Ensemble Intercontemporain (EIC) from Paris, renowned worldwide as specialists in contemporary music. Their line-up consists of the Japanese premiere of Toshio Hosokawa’s opera Futari-Shizuka (The Maiden from the Sea), commissioned and premiered by EIC in Paris in 2017 (August 22, Main Hall), contemporary classics by Boulez, Ligeti and Lachenmann (August 24, Main Hall), as well as the new music of our age including works by Naoki Sakata, Pintscher and Grisey (August 23, Blue Rose).
  2. Theme Composer: Matthias Pintscher (Suntory Hall International Program for Music Composition No. 43)
    The Theme Composer series presents a portrait of a leading international composer, and commissions him/her a new orchestral work that is premiered during the festival. This year’s theme composer, chosen by the current series director Toshio Hosokawa, is Matthias Pintscher (b.1971), who is also the Music Director of the aforementioned EIC. According to Hosokawa, Pintscher is “one of the most successful and highly-regarded composers born around 1970.” In the orchestral portrait concert, the world premiere of neharot for orchestra (Suntory Hall commission) will be given by the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, conducted by the composer himself (August 27, Main Hall). Meanwhile the chamber music portrait concert (August 25, Main Hall) focuses on Pintscher’s two ensemble cycles, sonic eclipse and Profiles of Light (both Japanese premieres). He will also lead a public Composition Workshop for young composers, which will provide a rare insight into his compositional mind (August 26, Blue Rose).
    More about the International Program for Music Composition here:
  3. The 31st Competition of Yasushi Akutagawa Suntory Award for Music Composition
    This award is presented to the most notable orchestral work by a Japanese composer premiered during the previous year (January-December 2020). Following the performance of the three nominated works, the jury (Jo Kondo, Naoki Sakata, and Keiko Harada) will conduct the deliberations on stage in public. This year, the works of Yu Kuwabara, Yoichi Sugiyama, and Takuya Harashima are nominated, which will be performed by the New Japan Philharmonic conducted by Yoichi Sugiyama. The concert will be preceded by the world premiere of the new composition by Yasutaki Inamori, the winner of the 2019 award. There will also be chance for the public to vote for their favourite piece August (28, Main Hall). A live stream of this concert is also planned.

Full listings and updated information of the Summer Festival 2021 can be found at the following:

For further information and press photos, please contact:
Public Relations, Suntory Hall