Orchestra to woo Fukuoka


Wuppertal Symphony Orchestra, a German ensemble led by Japanese conductor Toshiyuki Kamioka, will perform the music of Richard Wagner for a Fukuoka audience on Oct. 15.

The orchestra, based in Wuppertal, western Germany, is comprised of 88 musicians and has nearly 150 years of history behind it. Major artists such as Clara Schumann, Johannes Brahms and Max Bruch have all played with the group, and a number of world-famous conductors began their careers in Wuppertal, including Erich Kleiber, Otto Klemperer and Hans Weisbach.

Since October 2009, Kamioka has been chief conductor of the orchestra. Born in Tokyo, he studied conducting, composition, piano and violin at the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music. In 1982, he was awarded the coveted Ataka Prize and two years later received a Rotary International Fellowship to attend the Hamburg Conservatory, where he studied conducting. After that, Kamioka worked as a conductor in several orchestras in Germany.

Under Kamioka’s baton, the Wuppertal Symphony Orchestra has developed considerably, both musically and technically, leading to regular invitations to appear in Milan, according to the orchestra. The troupe held a successful nine-day concert tour in Japan in 2007.

The event in Fukuoka is titled All Wagner Program. Classical music fans can expect to hear favorites such as “Faust Overture” and those from operas such as “Der Ring des Nibelungen” and “Die Walkure.”

The All Wagner Program will be held at Fukuoka Symphony Hall from 7 p.m. Ticket cost ¥4,000-8,000, and ¥2,000 for students. For reservations, call Acros Fukuoka Ticket Center at (092) 725-9112.