Toru Takemitsu

(1930 - 1996)
Toru Takemitsu was born in Tokyo on 8 October 1930. He began attending the Keika Junior High School in 1943 and resolved to become a composer at the age of 16. During the post-war years, he came into contact with Western music through radio broadcasts by the American occupying forces – not only jazz, but especially classical music by Debussy and Copland and even by Schoenberg. He made his debut at the age of 20 with a piano piece Lento in Due Movimenti. Alongside his musical studies, Takemitsu also took a great interest in other art forms including modern painting, theatre, film and literature. His cultural-philosophical knowledge was acquired through a lively exchange of ideas with Yasuji Kiyose paired with his own personal experiences. In 1951, the group “Experimental Workshop” was co-founded by Takemitsu, other composers and representatives from a variety of artistic fields; this was a mixed media group whose avant-garde multimedia activities soon caused a sensation. Takemitsu taught composition at Yale University and received numerous invitations for visiting professorships from universities in the USA, Canada and Australia. He died in Tokyo on 20 February 1996. Peter Mussbach and the Berlin State Opera Unter den Linden commemorated Takemitsu in their staged project "My Way of Life” in 2004.

Toru Takemitsu Composition Timpani and Percussion Requirements

River Run

No Timpani + 4 percussion
Marimba, glockenspiel, vibraphone, tubular bells & low B nat & Bb, xylophone, 3 tam tams, bass bow, 2 timpani

To the Edge of Dreams

No Timpani + 4 percussion
3 tam tams, B crotale, glockenspiel, vibraphone, 2 gongs, tubular bells, 2 triangles, 2 suspended cymbals

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