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Soloists join chamber group

by Chiho Iuchi

Top Italian chamber group I Solisti Filarmonici Italiani will perform a Christmas concert accompanied by soloists Ayako Takagi, Mayako Sone and Ai Okumura in Tokyo on Dec. 23.

The chamber group, known for its bright ensemble playing, comprises musicians with experience as concertmasters and as the first soloists of orchestras in Italy.

Some of the members are also prize winners of international competitions and ex-members of well-known Italian chamber orchestras, including the Rome Chamber Orchestra.

Flutist Ayako Takagi, a prize winner in the Jean-Pierre Rampal International Flute Competition in 2001, has collaborated with European chamber orchestras such as Stuttgarter Kammerorchester and Ensemble Archi della Scala when the two have previously toured Japan.

Harpsichordist Mayako Sone studied under the late Scott Ross, an American harpsichordist and long-term French resident.

Sone has been signed to the French label Erato — the same label as her mentor Ross — since 1991.

Violinist Ai Okumura is an active recording artist as well as concert performer, and has appeared on many television and radio programs.

Although the concert program is not particularly Christmas-themed, it does include many chamber-music masterpieces, such as Handel’s “Ombra mai fu,” Bach’s “Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 in D major” and “Winter” from “The Four Seasons” by Vivaldi.

“I Solisti Filarmonici Italiani Christmas Concert” takes places at Tokyo Opera City Concert Hall on Dec. 23, 3 p.m.

Tickets are 4,000 yen and 6,000 yen (call Kajimoto Eplus at [0570] 06-9960).