The first cherry blossoms have been showing up in Japan, which means that the cherry blossom season has started. It is still not possible to visit Japan, so we have to let this season pass us by, although it is possible to experience it a bit digitally.
The beautiful location of the Honpō-ji temple in Kyoto is a perfect place for a Japanese classical performance, especially when the location is embraced by the cherry blossoms in full bloom. On Saturday 3rd of April, a performance by Shinobue (bamboo flute) artist Kazuya Sato will take place, a special spring performance titled The Song of the Cherry Blossoms Carried in the Spring Breeze. Honpō-ji is founded in 1416 by a Buddhist priest of the Nichiren sect, the temple is home to traditional Japanese gardens as well as famous works by the 16th-century artist Hasegawa Tōhaku.
The performance will be streamed live from the location from 8.30 in the United Kingdom (9.30 CEST) and will last one and a half hours. A ticket for this stream will be £15 (around 17,50 euros) and if you are not able to watch it live, you will be able to view the archive video until the 10th of April 2021. Tickets for the live broadcast are available for purchase through Eventbrite.
The musician who will be playing, Kazuya Sato, has dedicated much of his life to the art of Shinobue, a traditional bamboo flute that has been a part of Japanese artistic culture for centuries. Also known as a Takebue, this instrument has long been involved in ancient public art forms, including the internationally recognised Noh and Kabuki, two of the most important forms of Japanese theatre. Kazuya Sato has been earnestly practising with the Shinobue since graduating university, but he first picked up the flute as a junior-high-school student to get involved with a local Karatsu Kunchi Festival being held in his home prefecture of Saga.