In Thursday’s (4/11) Japan Times (Tokyo), Chiho Iuchi writes, “Tokyo Symphony Orchestra has returned to its home at Muza Kawasaki Symphony Hall. The orchestra was homeless for two years after the hall in Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture, was severely damaged by the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011. On the afternoon of April 7, a capacity audience at Muza held their breath as the overwhelming sound of fanfare filled the 1,997-seat hall. The orchestra launched into a performance of Josef Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 9 under the baton of Dutch music director Hubert Soudant, who chose the 19th-century Austrian composer’s unfinished swan song to celebrate the special day. … Muza hall was one of the few buildings in the region affected by the magnitude-9 earthquake, whose epicenter was located off the coast of Miyagi Prefecture more than 300 km from Kawasaki. While most of the buildings in the area survived the quake undamaged, the hall couldn’t withstand the seismic intensity, which measured an upper 5, and its ceiling panels, acoustics-enhancing materials, lighting and air conditioning came crashing to the floor. Reconstruction work was completed Dec. 25.” During the two years that the Tokyo Symphony was displaced from its home hall, it performed in alternate venues throughout the Kawasaki region, including the Teatro Giglio Showa and Senzoku Gakuen Maeda Hall.

Posted April 12, 2013