Japan 2008


The Indian heritage
Recipient of the "Hors les Murs" award (Culturesfrance) in 2008, drummer and percussionist Ahmad Compaoré spent 4 months in Tokyo (Japan) to carry out a project of creation with Japanese violinist Tadahiko Yokogawa, mixing instrumental and computer-aided music. The beginnings of the AKIRA project formed in India, spiritual and nourishing land of Asia, a continent Ahmad set foot on for the first time in 2005. Winner of the "Villa Médicis Hors les Murs" award (AFAA), he lived in Pondicherry during 4 months to learn the art of tabla with master Sree Debasish Dass. To an age-old India echoes an innovative and experimental Japan, just like the artistic development Ahmad wishes to achieve. According to him, Japan remains the Asian stopover not to be overlooked with regards to contemporary creation. Move from the East to the Far East, take it even further, in all respects...

Improvised music
Thus, the project of a real in-depth work was born, that could be developed between two fellow musicians, drummer Ahmad Compaoré and Japanese violinist Tadahiko Yokogawa. They first met in Marseilles in 2004 during MIMI festival. « I've always known he is a very good musician and composer, Tadahiko recalls, because he can play deep traditional rhythms as well as grasp the essence of modern music ». In the past, Ahmad Compaoré had collaborated with several Japanese artists of which singer Tenko and percussionist Makoto Yabuki (Bamboo Orchestra). His career in the field of improvised music - distinguished by his collaborations with Fred Frith, Marc Ribot, Butch Morris or Barre Phillips - will be the guideline of the AKIRA project and find its full meaning in its completion.

The "Akira" musical identity
The idea for the AKIRA project is simple: a dialogue between popular and art music, between acoustic and electronic music, where tradition meets modernity. Basically, a contemporary dialogue between Ahmad and Tadahiko, each one entangled with his respective society, a confrontation of each one's relation with his own culture. Sharing the same view of modern societies, inventing a new genre influenced by their respective career in improvised music. AKIRA is also a life project as it implies to compose a repertoire that endures, on which other artists' collaborations can be added, through a true intercultural process. To compose a new traditional music in a contemporary style: this is the goal to achieve. The project evolved to include other musicians, like composer and producer Ono Seigen, percussionist Semba Kiyohiko and guitarist Otomo Yoshihide.

• Series of "Akira Project" concerts with Tadahiko Yokogawa in Tokyo, Osaka, Kobe and Kyoto
• End of residency concerts with Fred Frith and Otomo Yoshihide in Tokyo
• Live recording of one concert

Residency of creation in Tokyo from October 2008 to January 2009.