ISLAMABAD - The Embassy of Japan in collaboration with the Turkish Embassy Tuesday organised a joint music recital to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the establishment of the diplomatic relations between Japan and Pakistan.

Ambassador Hiroshi Oe was among well-known Japanese musicians including Kazuhisa Akita, On Mitani, Mie Kobayashi and Yuriko Ito, who together with the Japanese Ambassador mesmerised the audience with the sweet sounds of piano and violin tunes. A houseful of music lovers’ mostly foreign diplomats and their spouses attended the function held in the auditorium of the Turkish Embassy. Federal Minister for Defence Syed Naveed Qamar was the chief guest. The function started with anthems of Pakistan and Japan. The visiting Japanese artists played Pakistani and Japanese songs on piano and violin.         

Ambassador Hiroshi Oe started to play the piano at the age of 5, and after a long interval of not playing for more than 30 years, resumed taking lessons again from 2006. He won 2 Gold medals and 2 Silver medals in the Amateur solo and concerto sectors of 2011 International Chopin Competition in Asia. He has played with Tokyo New City Orchestra, as well as the Prima Vista Quartet and the Silesia Philharmonic Orchestra from Poland during their visits to Japan. He also gave a fundraiser concert at the University of Tokyo in 2011 after the earthquake and tsunami. Kazuhisa Akita (Composer) graduated from Hochschule der Kunste Berlin. He won first prize in the 6th ‘Valentino Bucchi’ International Composition Competition (Italy). He has received prestigious awards at several competitions such as ‘Hambacher Preis’ International Composition Competition (Germany) and the 42nd & 44th Music Competition of Japan. Currently he is a professor at Showa University of Music.  On Mitani (Piano) graduated from the Toho Gakuen School of Music. He has played solo and chamber music in different parts of the world. He was appointed as “Special Advisor for Cultural Exchange” by the Agency for Cultural Affairs, Government of Japan in 2003. Mie Kobayashi (Violin) studied at Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music. In 1990, she was the first Japanese artist to win first prize at the Marguerite Long-Jacques Thibaud International Competition for Piano and Violin. As one of Japan’s leading violinists, Kobayashi has recently performed as a soloist with the Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra, the Prague Symphony Orchestra in Japan and the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra in Beijing. Currently she is a professor at Showa University of Music.

Yuriko Ito (Piano) graduated from the Toho Gakuen College of Drama and Music in Japan and Moscow PI Tchaikovsky Conservatory. She also received diploma from Poland National Chopin Academy. Ito has won many prizes at international piano competitions including the first prize at the 5th Great Wall International Piano Competition. She is now vice director of the Association for Promotion of the Arts.