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Date: Feb 23, 2018

Music from Japan and Germany underlines the desire to work together Waseda Symphony Orchestra performed at the University of Bonn

At the invitation of the Rector of the University of Bonn, the Waseda Symphony Orchestra has performed in Bonn. In the fully occupied auditorium of the main building, the musicians from Bonn's strategic partner university Waseda University in Tokyo performed works by Brahms, Beethoven and the Japanese composers Rentaro Taki and Yuzo Toyama. The University of Bonn has a long-standing partnership with Waseda University. Since 1960, there has been a lively exchange in research and teaching. The connections are to be further expanded in the coming years.

The Waseda Symphony Orchestra is a highly acclaimed amateur orchestra of students from Waseda University. The orchestra will perform in major concert halls in Germany and Europe in 2018, including the Berliner Philharmoniker Saal, the Frankfurter Alten Oper and the Elbphilharmonie. The performance of the orchestra in Bonn was conducted by Kiyotaka Teraoka.

Rentaro Taki (1879-1903) and Yuzo Toyama (born 1931) are Japanese composers who both studied in Germany. The orchestra played Taki's work Kojo no Tsuki ('The Moon over the Castle Ruin') and Toyama's 'Rhapsody for Orchestra'.

Rector Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Michael Hoch had invited the orchestra of the Japanese partner university Waseda to give a concert in honor of the 200th anniversary of the University of Bonn. He emphasized, "This concert is a wonderful birthday present for our university and a great symbol of the partnership and friendship between Bonn and Waseda. Thank you very much to all who contributed to make this wonderful event possible. The University of Bonn maintains numerous excellent relationships with renowned universities and research institutes around the world, but the almost 60-year partnership with Waseda is a very special one, and we want to expand it in the coming years.”

The vice-president for international affairs at Waseda University, Prof. Norimasa Morita, had come to Bonn with the musicians. He replied: "Today’s concert will be a special occasion in the history of the partnership that our two universities have fostered together over half a century. It is to mark a milestone in the friendship between our two great universities and to be remembered as a truly special event in the future. "

The Japanese Consul General Ryuta Mizuuchi had also traveled to Bonn for the concert. He said in his welcoming address: "150 years ago began the modernization of Japan and its active participation on an international level. It is therefore extremely gratifying and of particular importance that the Waseda Symphony Orchestra, representing one of the most prestigious academic institutions in Japan, is in Bonn for this historically important event; and a renewed exchange with the University of Bonn is made possible. I would like to express my hope that this concert will lead to an increasingly intensive exchange between the two universities, as well as between Bonn and Japan."

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