Global Georgia Initiative: Kishi Bashi – “A Conversation on the Japanese Incarceration Through Song and Film”
200 N Milledge Ave
Athens, GA 30601
A total of 155 seats for this event will be available to the public. Eighty-five general admission seats were made available by online RSVP Feb. 5. All of these have been claimed. An additional 70 seats will be available on a first-come, first-served basis when doors open the day of the event. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the event begins at 8. Those with online reservations and other guests will be admitted before walk-ups. Any online reservations that are unclaimed at 7:30 p.m. will be released to the public.
The acclaimed violinist Kishi Bashi will present a multimedia event built around Omoiyari, his film and song project exploring the history and legacy of Japanese incarceration in the United States during World War II. He will be joined by collaborators Julian Saporiti and Erin Aoyama, musicians and graduate student researchers in American studies at Brown University, as well as by a string quartet. Following the music, film, and spoken word performance, John Morrow, professor of history at UGA, will moderate a panel discussion with Kishi Bashi, Saporiti, and Aoyama.
Kishi Bashi is the professional name of singer, multi-instrumentalist, and songwriter Kaoru Ishibashi. Born in Seattle, Washington, Ishibashi studied film scoring at Berklee College of Music before becoming a highly in-demand violinist, performing with artists including of Montreal, Regina Spektor, and Tall Tall Trees. He released his solo debut, 151A, in 2012, and has subsequently issued two live albums and two studio albums, including 2016’s Sonderlust. He is based in Athens.
For Omoiyari, Ishibashi has visited the sites of camps throughout the western half of the United States where more than 100,000 Japanese Americans, most of them U.S. citizens, were incarcerated by the U.S. government from 1942 until after the war’s end. Accompanied by Saporiti and Aoyama and with the incarceration sites as a backdrop, Ishibashi has written and performed highly personal music that engages with this difficult history as well as social and racial divisions in today’s America.
Saporiti is the guiding force behind No-No Boy, a music and research project on which he collaborates with Aoyama, whose grandmother was incarcerated in one of the World War II camps, Heart Mountain in Wyoming. No-No Boy is a multimedia concert featuring Saporiti’s music interwoven with stories he has collected, performed against a backdrop of projections displaying archival photographs and films.
The Seney-Stovall event will integrate components of Omoiyari, No-No Boy, and improvised musical performances, along with the panel discussion with Morrow.
The event is part of the Global Georgia Initiative, an annual guest speaker series produced by the Willson Center. It is presented in partnership with the department of history, the Asian Studies Program, and the Athens Music Project, a Willson Center Faculty Research Cluster.
The Global Georgia Initiative presents global problems in local context with a focus on how the arts and humanities can intervene. The series is made possible by the support of private individuals and the Willson Center Board of Friends.