October 30, 2011 at 7:35 pm
A shamisen, also known as sangen, is a three-stringed Japanese musical instrument that is usually played with a plectrum called a bachi. The instrument is constructed similar to that of a guitar or banjo, with only the neck slightly slimmer than that of a guitar or banjo. The neck of the shamisen is usually built in such a way that it can be divided into three or four pieces that fit and lock together, usually for ease of storage. The pegs that are used to wind the strings were traditionally made from ivory, though recently these pegs have been produced using other materials such as various kinds of wood and plastic. The three strings are made of nylon and are stretched across the body and raised from it by using a bridge.
The shamisen can be played solo or with other shamisen, in an ensemble with other Japanese instruments or with singing and even as an accompaniment to drama. For those who enjoy the dynamic and energetic sounds of shamisen, there will be a performance by the Mugenjuku Troupe. They have been specially invited by The Japan Foundation, Kuala Lumpur and will be performing a series of performances in Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Kuala Terengganu from 31st October to 2nd November 2011. Performance schedules are as below:
Date Time : 31 October 2011, 8.30 pm
Venue : Dewan Budaya, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM)
Date Time : 1 November 2011, 8.30 pm
Venue : Orchestra Hall, Akademi Seni Budaya Dan Warisan Kebangsaan (ASWARA)
Date Time : 2 November 2011, 8.30 pm
Venue : Dewan Sultan Mizan, Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (UMT)
Admission is free for both performances. For more information, please visit the Japan Foundation, Kuala Lumpur’s website here.
Photo (c) The Japan Foundation