I will be very pleased to see you all again on the occasion of the International Music Festival NIPPON 2020. The year 2020 is the important 75th anniversary year of the end of the last world war, a time when the world took a new step forward together. In the world of music, 2020 is also the 250th anniversary of the birth of the incomparable composer Beethoven. And for me personally, 2020 is the 30th anniversary year of winning the International Tchaikovsky Competition in 1990.
Thanks to the support and assistance of many people in my life so far, I have had many opportunities to perform in Japan and other countries. For me these opportunities have been precious lessons, experiences and times of inspiration. They have also been times when I was able to meet many wonderful people, share with them the joy of “living in the present,” and truly experience peace and happiness together with people from all over the world.
The International Music Festival NIPPON, which I invite all of you to attend, has been based on two guiding themes: presenting the excitement and inspiration of the musical artistry that is so important to all of us, and conveying a message to people who live with a view to the future. Bearing in mind that this festival is taking place in the year 2020—a milestone year for the world and for me personally—I have organized the festival in the sincere hope that, through the energy that exists in works of art, new encounters, connections and emotions will come about among people and be transformed into messages of vitality and peace for the people of today and the future. Once again this year, many friends and colleagues have gathered at the music festival to perform diverse and ambitious programs.
Lastly, I would like to take this opportunity to again express my heartfelt gratitude to the companies and individuals who have continued to provide support for the festival since its launch in 2012.
I look forward to seeing you at the music festival venues.