For any fan of music in the Lowcountry who has a desire to shake up their normal listening palate in favor of something unique, Dec. 13 will be your chance.
Local music promoter Jeff Zagers has teamed up with Dollhouse Productions to bring in a special performance by percussionist and acoustic sound artist Tatsuya Nakatani.
Nakatani, a Japanese native who has been living and performing in the U.S. for almost two decades, creates a symphonic range of sound using any combination of gongs, cymbals, sticks, kitchen tools, metal bowls, snare drums, toms and handmade bows.
"Nakatani has a true gift of purifying a room and audience," Zagers said. "Sense, especially hearing, is heightened as he acoustically manipulates ancient and modern percussion to yield sound of industry, electronics and meditation. I welcome anyone and everyone to attend."
Since the 1990s, Nakatani has performed all over the world, including three times in Savannah, and released more than 60 recordings. He teaches master classes and usually collaborates with local artists in his travels. He will be joined by a group of local musicians for his Nakatani Gong Orchestra, which will play before his solo performance the same night.
The NGO, directed by Nakatani, showcases several gongs that are bowed by the performer, creating an orchestration of long, rich sound waves that vary in pitch and distance.
Inspired by traditional Japanese music, as well as experimental jazz and noise rock, Nakatani creates a unique soundscape in his live performances that is based on the Japanese word MA, which means space, distance or silence.
In the moment he is creating, any number of the three ingredients come into play. At times, the sound can be counted in traditional time signatures, and at other moments, he creates long sounds on a bowed gong, or by using loose cymbals on a snare head, that can't be counted or quantified.
"I am not jazz; I am not Japanese; I am not anything (laughs)," Nakatani said in an interview on Youtube.
The 44-year-old has performed in a variety of venues and halls, including the Kennedy Center in New York and the now-defunct punk rock haven CBGB.
His fourth Savannah appearance will be at the Black Box Theatre at the Department of Cultural Affairs. The event is limited to 100 seats and is open to all ages.