A Series of “Musical Voyages along the Silk Road”
“Individuals with a global view of the human condition agree that the best way to unite the hearts and minds of all people is through cultural networking on the broadest possible basis. In my travels I have heard people everywhere speak of their desire for East-West cultural interchange. At no time in history has there been as great a need for a spiritual Silk Road extending all over the globe, transcending national and ideological barriers, and binding together peoples at the most basic level. Cultural interactions that are a spontaneous manifestation of the popular will can turn suspicion into trust, convert hostility into understanding, and lead the world away from strife toward lasting peace.”
The above is an excerpt of Min-On founder Dr. Daisaku Ikeda’s speech entitled A New Road to East-West Cultural Exchange delivered at Moscow State University in May 1975.
Two years later in 1977, as a step toward realizing this spiritual Silk Road mentioned in the speech, Min-On dispatched the Silk Road Musical Folklore Research Teams to conduct comprehensive surveys on the music and dance cultures in the Middle Eastern and Asian countries along the Silk Road, and based on the results of this research, initiated a concert series entitled A Musical Voyage Along the Silk Road. For the first installment of the series, Min-On brought musicians and artists from Mongolia, the former USSR, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, and Nepal together onstage in Japan for collaborative performances. Since then, there have been 11 installments, each featuring brilliant performances that exemplify East-West cultural exchange and transcend national, ethnic and language barriers. To date, more than 400 musicians and dancers from 23 countries along the historical Silk Road have been involved in the series, creating a friendly and harmonious environment in concert venues throughout Japan.
A Musical Voyage along the Silk Road
- 1st Installment, July 1979Artists from Mongolia, former USSR, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, and Nepal, under the concert title of Singing Voices From Afar
- 2nd Installment, July 1981Artists from Iraq, China, Pakistan, and Romania under the concert title of Happy Encounters of Instrumentalists
- 3rd Installment, July 1983Artists from India, China and Turkey under the concert title of Migration Path of Circular Dancing
- 4th Installment, July 1985Artists from Uzbekistan, China and Turkey under the concert title of Road towards Peace from Afar
- 5th Installment, July 1987Artists from Tajikistan, Mongolia, and China, under the concert title of Steppe and Oasis Road from Afar
- 6th Installment, March 1989Artists from Iran, Azerbaijan, and China, under the concert title of A Long Way of Music from Caravansary
- 7th Installment, May 1991Artists from Kazakhstan, Greece and Egypt under the concert title of A Long Way of Music to the Mediterranean Sea
- 8th Installment, March 1993Artists from Korea, Turkmenistan (Jamal Music Ensemble), Nepal (The Nepalese Folk Troupe), and China (The Inner Mongolia Song and Dance Troupe), under the concert title of Epic Ballads From Afar
- 9th Installment, March 1995Artists from Syria, Kyrgyz (The Kambarkan Folk Ensemble), and Pakistan (The National Folk Ensemble), under the concert title of Roads of Distant Heroes
- 10th Installment, May 1997Artists from Uzbekistan (Uzbekistan Folklore Ensemble), China (The Xingjiang Mukam Art Ensemble), and Turkey (The Turkish Traditional Culture and Art Ensemble), under the concert title of Pathway to the Distant Future
- 11th Installment, May 2009Artists from Egypt, Greece and Uzbekistan