OTONOWA Sound Circle is an ongoing documentary project that I started in 2014. Every year I join the American jazz band Otonowa’s tour in Tohoku for the communities affected by the earthquake/tsunami.
The band Otonowa, led by drummer Akira Tana and including Art Hirahara (piano), Ken Okada (bass) and Masaru Koga (woodwinds/percussions), performs and provides workshop for these communities since 2013, although their involvement with fundraising initiatives started right after the tragedy.
Vocalist Saki Kono, also joins the band and is the tour organizer and big donor herself. I was the only non musician traveling with the band, band along the years many people joined and provided their support and energy.
So far I produced two documentaries: “Otonowa. Music as Spiritual Healing” and “Sound Circle Otonowa” (2015). I’m now releasing individual interviews of local people, band members, psychologists, social workers, local musicians and volunteers from the US and other countries who came to join the tour as parts of the “Sound Circle Otonowa Interview Project.
The Sound Circle Interview Project is a collection of testimonies from people affected by the 2011 tsunami in Tohoku, Japan, and in other parts of the world.
Social workers, volunteers, professional or amateur musicians, the fil rouge connecting all of these people is music, and its extraordinary and uplifting healing power.
You can watch all the interviews on YouTube