Musical Collaboration TEN THOUSAND LEAVES at The Jazz Gallery


Ten Thousand Leaves, musical collaboration, Aya Nishina, Becca Stevens, Shimpei Takeda, NYC, Japan, The Jazz Gallery, Man-yo-shu, The Pillow Book, Japanese literature, gagaku, traditional Irish music


Friday, June 24 at 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.
Saturday, June 25 at 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.

The Jazz Gallery – 1160 Broadway, 5th Floor (between 27th and 28th Streets)

Admission: $22/$12 members

Recently awarded a Performing Arts Japan 2015-2016 grant by The Japan Foundation, TEN THOUSAND LEAVES is a musical collaboration by American vocalist/composer Becca Stevens and Japanese composer/producer Aya Nishina, with video projection by Japanese photographic artist Shimpei Takeda, delivering a series of live audio-visual performances, recordings, and one-of-a-kind educational outreach programs for local youth.

Inspired by Japanese culture prevalent in women’s literature and imperial court music during the country’s classical period (ca. 550-1185), TEN THOUSAND LEAVES renders a cross-cultural bridge connecting people from the past and the present through songs of timeless human emotions and a reverence for nature. A cycle of new compositions written by Stevens and Nishina transforms ancient Japanese women’s poetry from Man-yo-shu (“Collection of Ten Thousand Leaves”) and essays such as Makura-no-sōshi (“The Pillow Book”) into songs of modern lyricism. Together, Stevens and Nishina expand a common land between traditional Irish music and Japanese Gagaku, court music from the 7th century.

The project celebrates its first artist residency in New York City, hosted by The Jazz Gallery, America’s premier performance venue for emerging international artists who challenge convention, take creative risks, and lead their field as performers, composers, and thinkers. The TEN THOUSAND LEAVES residency is part of the not-for-profit organization’s 20th anniversary concert series. Stevens and Nishina will premiere their commissioned works and will be joined by Takeda, whose live video works will be projected on original stage sets designed by Ostap Rudakevych and Masayuki Sono of Clouds Architecture Office. The team also includes internationally acclaimed sound engineer Fernando Aponte, who is producing all live sounds and recordings.

To purchase tickets, please visit The Jazz Gallery’s website.