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In Memoriam: Isao Matsushita (1951-2018)

Oct. 01, 2018

In Memoriam: Isao Matsushita (1951-2018)

We are deeply saddened to report the passing of Isao Matsushita on September 16 at the age of 66.

Isao Matsushita was a highly-regarded composer, conductor, and producer who served as Vice President of the Tokyo University of the Arts, a professor at the Performing Arts Center of the same university, president of the Asian Composers League, and Chairman of the Japan Federation of Composers. His prolific oeuvre includes works that span a wide range of genres, and many that blend Eastern and Western musical instruments and traditions.

Among Matsushita's most famous works include a three-act opera Shinano-no-kuni, which was part of the official cultural program of the Winter Olympics in Nagano in 1998, the double violin concerto A Time for Prayer (2005); and Hi-ten-yu, wadaiko (1994), a concerto for wadaiko (traditional Japanese drums) and orchestra which has been performed around the world. A performance of this work by the Berlin Philharmonic under the direction of Kent Nagano is available to view via their Digital Concert Hall here.

Click here to read an informative tribute to Isao Matsushita from the International Society for Contemporary Music. 

Listen to Isao Matsushita's "Prayer of the Firmament" Ode to Precious Life (2011) here:

("Prayer of the Firmament" Ode to Precious Life/Isao Matsushita/Tokyo Bunkyo Civic Orchestra/
Isao Matsushita, conductor)

To learn more about Isao Matsushita, please visit