Kyo-Shin-An Arts Presents “Winter Light” at Tenri Cultural Institute

Winter Light by Kyo-Shin-An Arts

Sunday, February 9 at 4:00 p.m.

Tenri Cultural Institute – 43A W. 13 Street (between 5th and 6th Avenues)

Admission: $25 in advance/$30 at the door/$10 discount for seniors and students/Free children under 12

Kyo-Shin-An Arts, a contemporary music organization dedicated to the integration of the Japanese instruments koto, shakuhachi, and shamisen into Western classical composition, continues its 11th season with Winter Light. It will be an afternoon of Duos, trios, and quartets with KSA commissions by Debra Kaye and Salina Fisher.


  • But Beautiful by Takuma Itoh (koto and cello)
  • Paraphase by Toshi Ichiyanagi (shamisen and cello)
  • 2Blue by James Nyoraku Schlefer (shakuhachi and viola)
  • Between, a new KSA commission by Salina Fisher (koto, shakuhachi, viola and cello)
  • Three Zen Poems, a new KSA commission by Debra Kaye (shakuhachi, viola and cello)

Space is limited, so advance ticket purchase is recommended. Please visit to purchase tickets.

About Duo Yumeno

Duo Yumeno features New York-based koto and shamisen player and singer Yoko Reikano Kimura and cellist Hikaru Tamaki. Together they create a singular fusion sound, inspired by tradition but with a contemporary sensibility. As a cultural ambassador of Japanese music, the duo first collaborated in 2008 and has been performing together regularly throughout the US and worldwide, including an annual Japan tour.

Their commissioned works blend Eastern and Western traditions from Toshi Ichiyanagi, Daron Hagen, Marty Regan, Yoko Sato, Elizabeth Brown, Takuma Itoh, and Kaito Nakahori.

In 2019 duo performed its 10th anniversary recital to a sold-out audience at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.

About David Yang

The recipient of an artist fellowship from the distinguished Independence Foundation, violist David Yang has been called “a conduit for music” and his playing described as “lithe and expressive” in the Strad Magazine. A renaissance man, he has forged a career that is a blend of performing, composition, and storytelling.

Concert highlights include concertos in Canada and Great Britain along with recitals in Italy, the UK, and throughout the US. As an active advocate of new music, he has commissioned dozens of works.

Yang is the Artistic Director of the Newburyport Chamber Music Festival (Boston), Ashburton Chamber Music Festival (England), and Director of Chamber Music at the University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia). In his role as leader of the Auricoalae Storytelling and Music Troupe, he developed a residency program to foster the creation of new compositions by public school students.

About James Nyoraku Schlefer

James Nyoraku Schlefer is a Grand Master of the shakuhachi and one of only a handful of non-Japanese artists to have achieved this rank. He received the Dai-Shi-Han (Grand Master) certificate in 2001 and his second Shi-Han certificate in 2008, from the Mujuan Dojo in Kyoto. He has performed at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, Tanglewood and BAM, as well as multiple venues across the country and in Japan, Indonesia, Brazil, and Europe.

Schlefer first encountered the shakuhachi in 1979, while working towards a career as a flute player and pursuing an advanced degree in musicology. Today he is considered by his colleagues to be one of most influential Western practitioners of this distinctive art form. Known to his students as Nyoraku sensei, Schlefer established his own dojo in NYC in 1996. He also teaches shakuhachi at Columbia University, a broad spectrum of Western and World music courses at New York City College of Technology (CUNY), and performs and lectures at colleges and universities throughout the US.

As a composer, Schlefer has written multiple chamber and orchestral works combining Japanese and Western instruments as well as numerous pieces solely for traditional Japanese instruments.

In December 2015, Musical America Worldwide recognized him as one of their “30 Top Professionals and Key Influencers” for his work both as a composer and Artistic Director of Kyo-Shin-An Arts. NewMusicBox published his writings about the shakuhachi and his career in 2018, and the National Endowment for the Arts profiled him on its Arts Works Blog in May 2016.

About Kyo-Shin-An Arts

A 2016 and 2013 CMA/ASCAP Adventurous Programming Award winner (small presenter, mixed repertory), Kyo-Shin-An Arts works in partnership with established ensembles and Western soloists, bridging two cultures by introducing composers and players alike to the range and virtuosity of Japanese instruments and the musicians who play them. The resulting music provides audiences with a unique introduction to traditional Japanese music within a familiar context and fabulous contemporary music. Concerts feature a blend of KSA commissions with World, American and New York premieres, traditional, and contemporary music for Japanese instruments and Western repertoire.

About Tenri Cultural Institute and Kyo-Shin-An Arts Present

The excellent acoustics and intimate gallery setting of the Tenri Cultural Institute create a superb setting for listening to chamber music and offer audiences the rare opportunity to hear both traditional and contemporary music from two cultures in a setting similar to the music rooms of the courts and castles of both Europe and Japan. More than 300 years of chamber music tradition are presented throughout this series. Performances feature piano trios and string quartets from the great composers of Europe, music from Japan’s Edo period written for shamisen, koto and shakuhachi and contemporary music combining Western and Japanese instruments.

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