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Weblog of Kaoru Watanabe, NY based Flute/Fue player

February Update

Fumi Tanakadate

Kaoru and Kenny.jpg

Hello Friends and family,

It's been an interesting year so far to say the least. I'm trying to stay positive, creative and proactive through all that is happening. With the deliberate intent of fighting the ignorance and hatred permeating and emboldened in our global society these days, I promise to keep pushing my art forward, to continue working with an ever more diverse array of collaborators.

I will be performing at Joe's Pub on Feb 25th with the great Kenny Endo, a huge influence and inspiration in my life- in a way a singular predecessor to my path, a Japanese American who moved to Japan and lived there for a decade studying and working with the vanguard of Japanese artists.

Also joining me will be:

Alicia by Deborah Lopez.jpg
Kinan Azmeh.jpg

Alicia Hall Moran, a genius singer, actress, known for playing Bess in the National Tour of Porgy and Bess as well as her brilliant work with such luminaries as Charles Lloyd, Bill T. Jones and Jason Moran. 

Jacob Garchik, a trombonist, bandleader, composer who leads some of the most eclectic and celebrated bands in New York (Ye Olde, La Banda, The Heavens). 

Kinan Azmeh, a globe-trotting Syrian clarinet virtuoso who has won international acclaim as a composer, performer, improviser and recording artist in a wide range of musical genres and with his collaborative works with Yo-Yo Ma. 

Fumi Tanakadate, a rising star in the world of taiko drumming who has studied extensively with Watanabe and has performed with Kenny Endo and members of Kodo.

The following day, I'm honored to be joining my good friend Chris Dingman during his residency at the Stone with some really wonderful musicians- Charlie Burnham (violin) Kaoru Watanabe (flutes) Chris Dingman (vibes) Ryan Ferreira (guitar) Zaneta Sykes(percussion).

Also, my old friends from Kodo will be performing at BAM March 1 through 4th. I won't actually be in town to see the concert, but I encourage everyone to see them live- no other group has achieved their collective level of musicianship on the taiko.

Besides these activities, I will be spending much of February doing residencies at both Dartmouth College and Brandeis University. And for the rest of the year I have a few projects brewing that will be unveiled soon, including a new concert series, some interesting concerts and travels near and far.