Recursive Orchestra: Updating the experience of a concert through technology

WOW magazine 214 - Jul. 31st, 2023

The Yoichi Ochiai × Japan Philharmonic Orchestra Project, in which WOW participates each year as a “Video Performer” is now in its sixth year. This project aims to harness technology to update the experience of listening to an orchestra and use art and culture to build a highly diverse society, as well as to disseminate Japanese culture. Based on the concept of music being not simply heard with the ears but also “felt with the senses in a physical experience,” this project has been pursuing the sheer joy of live music and working on the fusion of the digital and the real, even throughout the global pandemic. As a “Video Performer” WOW engages in video performances that incorporate the technology of the moment. This year we take up the challenge of realizing new forms of expression utilizing AI, a technology that continues to evolve rapidly.

In past performances, WOW has joined the orchestra, using video equipment as instruments. This year, images using AI will be transmitted to the two video screens (3.5m × 3.5m) installed on stage in a joint performance with the orchestra. By contrasting the images on the two screens, we will attempt to realize various performances, producing different visuals created from different command statements and multiple SEED values, and real-time switching enabled by AI. We have trained AI about performance statements and musicality, and the overall direction for the WOW performance will be input in advance. This performance will be reflective of the world that AI itself truly envisions, and not the “world we think AI might imagine” when we listen to music.

From this year, in collaboration with Dai Fujikura, a renowned Japanese composer resident in the United Kingdom, we introduce traditional sounds and auditory experiences from various regions of Japan, including the orchestra’s exploration of Japan in “Open Leaves,” a new original work. In this first year of the collaboration, the spotlight will be on the ancient music of the Ryukyus, combining orchestral sounds and technology with Ryukyuan court culture that has been so carefully preserved and passed down in Okinawa. Visit the venue directly to enjoy this performance, which will convey the deeply-rooted musical culture of Japan in a new form of expression, in a “recursive” experience for the audience.
Director/Producer: Yoichi Ochiai
Conductor: Hikaru Ebihara
Video Performer: WOW
Guests:TSUJI Ayana (Violin)
Ryukyu Classical Music Players: ARAKAKI Toshimichi, OSHIRO Takayuki, TANAHARA Kenta (Uta Sanshin) / IKEMA Hokuto (Koto) / KAMEI Mion (Fue) / MAEDA Hiromi (kokyu) / KUSHI Taiki (Taiko)
EBARA Yoko(Navigator)

■Performance Details
Date: August 23, 2023 (Wed)
Time: Performance at 19.00 (Doors open at 18:00)
Venue:Tokyo Opera City Concert Hall
Address:3-20-2 Nishi-shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo
Japan Philharmonic Orchestra Official Website

■Performance program
UEMATSU Nobuo: 《Final Fantasy》 Opening Theme
FUJIKURA Dai: Open Leaves (JPO Commission) [World Premiere]
OGURI Hiroshi: Fantasy on Osaka Folk Tunes
Antonio VIVALDI: SUMMER All Movements from 《The Four Seasons》RV315
Astor PIAZZOLLA: Verano Porteno - Summer
Alberto GINASTERA: Estancia Suite, Op. 8a -III. Les peones de hacienda:
Franz LISZT: Hungarian Rhapsody No.2
Leonard BERNSTEIN: Mambo from West Side Story 《Symphonic Dances》

■Venue tickets
S Adult ¥8,000、Child¥2,500/ A Adult ¥6,500、Child ¥1,000
Ys (under 25)・Handicap ¥1,500 
*All seats are tax included.
*Children: Elementary to high school students (preschool children are not admitted)
*Ys seats: For people 25 years old and younger / Discounted seats for A seats
*Application for Ys seats and diversity seats: JPO Service Center TEL.03-5378-6311(Weekdays 10:00-17:00)

Ticket purchase

*Pioneer Bodysonic (sensory sound system) seats are available.

■Online broadcast tickets

Viewing from Japan (live broadcast + recorded broadcast)
Ticket purchase

Viewing from abroad (live broadcast + recorded broadcast)
We will be accepting applications for online viewing from overseas only from the crowdfunding website. The program will be viewable in real time on August 23 (Wed.) from 23:00 (Japan time).
Ticket purchase

Crowdfunding READYFOR (until 23:00 on August 17)
Click here to support the concert. There are also plans that include tickets, or tickets that allow the broadcast to be watched from abroad.

Japan Philharmonic Orchestra
*A subsidized project of the 2023 Japan Expo Innovation Project
(Independent Administrative Agency Japan Arts Council/ Agency for Cultural Affairs)

Emo House Co., Ltd., WOW, TBWA\HAKUHODO, National Theatre Okinawa, Okinawa Prefectural University of Arts, D&Department, MUSIC/SLASH, Pioneer Corporation and others.

Prism Co., Ltd.

WOW magazine