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CELEB-CHOIR GIVEAWAY

All-male troupe sing requiem ‘Tengai’

by Chiho Iuchi

All-male celebrity choir Roppongi Dansei Gasshodan Club (better known as Rokudan) will perform a concert on Aug. 21 as a precursor to the inaugural Karuizawa Arts Festival 2007 (Aug. 20-26). Rokudan will sing the cantanta “Tengai” by renowned Japanese composer Shigeaki Saegusa.

The choir was originally formed by around 20 well-known people to participate in an AIDS charity concert in 1999. With composer Saegusa as leader, the choir has developed into a large group of 200, whose members include former Japanese Prime Minister Tsutomu Hata and screen actor Takuro Tatsumi.

“Tengai” was composed as a requiem for the composer’s good friend, Sony Corp. cofounder Akio Morita, who died in 1999. The piece begins with an angelic boy soprano solo followed by romantic melodies before climaxing with a powerful choir unison.

Located at the foot of Mount Asama in Nagano Prefecture, Karuizawa is one of Japan’s most popular resorts. Around 70 classical musicians from in and out of Japan will take part in Karuizawa Arts Festival (www.karu8.com).

Rokudan’s pre-concert takes places at Oga Hall, 4 p.m. Admission is restricted, but radio station FM Karuizawa is giving 50 pairs of tickets away for free. To apply, send a return-paid postcard to: “Rokudan” Ticket Giveaway Section, FM Karuizawa, Sawayaka Hut 2F, 1178-1186 Oaza Karuizawa, Karuizawa-machi, Kita-Saku-gun, 389-0102. The deadline is Aug. 10. For further information, call (0267) 41-3838.