Minoru Miki - Marimba
Keiko Abe - Dream of the Cherry
Toru Takemitsu - Rain
Minoru Miki - Time for
Akira Yuyama -
Toshimitsu Tanaka - Two Movements
Daniella Ganeva, the young Bulgarian percussionist, has released on CALA,
an intriguing disc of contemporary marimba music from Japan, 'Dream of the
Cherry Blossoms'. The marimba, only started to be taken seriously as a classical
instrument after the 1940's when a concerto was written for it by Paul Creston.
Recently Japanese composers have significantly added to its repertoire.
One of the highlights of the record is Minoru Miki's 'Marimba Spiritual',
written in response to the 1983 African famine. It starts with a spacious
exploration of the resonance of the marimba, and concludes with a more upbeat,
rhythmically driven ending, accompanied by three other percussionists.
The title track, by Keiko Abe describes the cherry blossoms falling in the
Japanese countryside. It is a hypnotic kaleidoscope, making particularly
effective use of the lower reaches of the marimba. Other tracks include a
jazz inspired piece for marimba and saxophone, and a piece by the late Toru
Takemitsu. Ganeva performs well throughout, and this is an interesting
and enjoyable collection.