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A Series of “Musical Voyages along the Silk Road”

“Culture is an essential human undertaking that conquers distance and stirs the hearts of people everywhere. I believe that this empathy between human hearts is the point of departure for cultural exchange and the basis of culture itself.”

“Whereas military might threatens humanity and seeks to impose control from without, culture is a liberating and revitalizing force that arises from within.”

“At no time in history has there been as great a need for a spiritual Silk Road extending across the globe, transcending national and ideological barriers and connecting people’s hearts at the deepest level.”

“Cultural exchange can bring people together, just as the strings of a lute strike harmonious vibrations in the hearts of all. There can be no such harmony, however, without a steadfast mutual recognition of equality. “

Daisaki Ikeda
Adopted from Daisaku Ikeda, “A New Road to East-West Cultural Exchange,” in A New Humanism: The University Addresses of Daisaku Ikeda (New York: Weatherhill, 1996), (1975).

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.

5th Installment “Steppe and Oasis Road from Afar” in 1987

7th Installment “A Long Way of Music to the Mediterranean Sea” in 1991-2

Korean Performance in 8th Installment in 1993

7th Installment “A Long Way of Music to the Mediterranean Sea” in 1991

9th Installment “Roads of Distant Heroes” in 1995

A Musical Voyage along the Silk Road

1st Instalment, July 1979

Artists from Mongolia, former USSR, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India,
and Nepal, under the concert title of Singing Voices From Afar


2nd Instalment, July 1981

Artists from Iraq, China, Pakistan, and Romania under the concert
title of Happy Encounters of Instrumentalists


3rd Instalment, July 1983

Artists from India, China and Turkey under the concert title of Migration Path of Circular Dancing


4th Instalment, July 1985

Artists from Uzbekistan, China and Turkey under the concert title of Road towards Peace from Afar


5th Instalment, July 1987

Artists from Tajikistan, Mongolia, and China, under the concert title of Steppe and Oasis Road from Afar


6th Instalment, March 1989

Artists from Iran, Azerbaijan, and China, under the concert title of A Long Way of Music from Caravansary


7th Instalment, May 1991

Artists from Iraq, China, Pakistan, and Romania under the concert
title of Happy Encounters of Instrumentalists


8th Installment, March 1993

Artists 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 1995

Artists 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 1997

Artists 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 2009

Artists from Egypt, Greece and Uzbekistan

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