Literally translated as chamber music, kammer from the German and raku from the Japanese
Kammerraku brings Japanese instruments to the Western classical idiom. It’s where the iconic string quartet meets the traditional Japanese sankyoku ensemble. A musical locale where the opulent courts of the Esterhazys meet the formal chambers of Imperial Japan. It’s an evocative sound that blends two timeless traditions within the rhythms, harmonies, melodies and soundscapes of contemporary composers.
Kammerraku is an overarching program comprised of ongoing relationships, single concerts and academic residencies. The name encompasses all of KSA’s work with multiple string quartets, both on its own presenting series in NYC and when touring players of Japanese instruments and concert programs to string quartets in other national locations. Individual concerts combine works featuring Japanese instruments with the standard and/or contemporary repertoire preferred by each string quartet partner. Current partners include the Arianna, Cassatt, Ciompi and Voxare String Quartets.
For audiences, this music is a voyage of discovery. KSA has premiered works for string quartet and Japanese instruments by Victoria Bond, Chad Cannon, Daron Hagen, Takuma Itoh, Paul Moravec, Mark Nowakowski, Thomas Osborne, Charles Porter, Carlos Sanchez-Gutierrez, Somei Satoh, James Nyoraku Schlefer and Donald Womack.
The program premiered May 5, 2012, presented by Arts Brookfield at the World Financial Center Winter Garden in NYC. Since that time, performances have been presented from coast to coast – in NYC on KSA’s series at Tenri, in DC at the Kennedy Center, in Hawaii, Indiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, and North Carolina.
Spring 1017 features two performances on KSA's home series at Tenri - the Cassatt Quartet on march 26 and the Ciompi Quartet on April 23.