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APA(Amateur Music Players’ Association, Japan pronounced ei-pa, ei as in eight)is a non-profit organization for amateur chamber music players established in 1974. A nationwide network, it currently consists of about 900 members, of whom 600 reside in the Tokyo Metropolitan area, 200 in the Kansai area, and about 100 are scattered around other parts of the country. There are regular meetings (sessions) for chamber music all over Japan-- for instance there are more than 20 groups meeting (chapters) once or twice a month within the Tokyo metropolitan area alone.
APA is a participant in ACMP's Going Places program. If you are contemplating visiting Japan for tourism or on business and wish to play chamber during your stay, we will try to organize chamber music sessions at locations convenient to you, and we may also be able provide instruments for use during your visit. (See APA-ACMP GOING PLACES section).
Regular APA chamber music meetings are held all over Japan, some weekly, some monthly, some less often. Chamber music players of all nationalities, abilities and experiences are welcome to join the following sessions. Please contact Sayoko Yamashita, Director of International Relations: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Below is a table listing the chapters, and regular meetings and concerts
|Chapter||Meeting time||earby station||Railroad line|
|<Tokyo Metropolitan area>|
|2. Saitama||3rd Sat or Sun 1-5pm/td>||Urawa||JR|
|3. Saitama Appointment||4th Sunday 10am-5pm||Yono-Honcho||JR|
|4. Den-en Toshi||3rd Sun 1-5pm||Aobadai/td>||Tokyu line|
|5. Toyoko-sen||last Sat 1-9pm||Okurayama||Tokyu line|
|6. Shonan||2nd Sat 1-5pm||Ofuna||JR|
|7. Kashiwa||3rd Sun 12-6pm||Chuo-Koen||Tsukuba Express|
|8. Katsushika||Sat or Sun 1-5pm||Aoto||Keisei line|
|9.Chuosen||Sat or Sun 1-5pm; 4 concerts yearly||Musashi-Koganei||JR Chuo Line|
|10. Utsunomiya||1st Sat pm||Tobu-Utsonomiya||Tobu Line|
|11.Thursday Meeting||1st Thurs 1-5pm 4th Thurs 10am-5pm||Fuchu/Sangu-bashi||Keio or Odakyu Line|
|12. Grade CD||4th Sun 12:30-5:30pm||Shinjuku||JR|
|13. Thursday Club||3rd Thur||Shinjuku<||JR|
|14. Tuesday Meeting||Tue 1-5pm||Shinjuku||JR|
|15. Flute Meeting||1st Sun 10am-5pm||Shinjuku||JR|
|16. String Quartet Meeting||Twice monthly Concerts several times a year||Korakuen/Kasuga||Subway|
|17. bbs FB||2nd Sat pm of every other odd month||Shinjuku||JR|
|18. Cello ensemble||3rd Fri 1-5pm||Shinjuku||JR|
|Tokyo area concerts (no regular meetings)|
|19. Cello Concert||Once yearly||
|20. Cello Autumn Concert||Once yearly in October||Musashikoyama||
|21. Viola Concert||Once yearly in June|
|22. Violin Concert||Twice yearly in July & Nov|
|23. Chamber Music with Piano||Once yearly in Sep or Oct||Kawasaki||JR|
|24. Works by Women Composers||Once yearly in autumn|
|25. All Brahms||Two concerts in May and June|
|<Central Japan area>|
|26. Tateshina||Once monthly 1-5pm||Fujimi||JR Chuo Honsen line|
|27. Kyoto Sunday Chapter||1st Sun 1-4pm||Kawaramachi||Hankyu line|
|28. Kyoto Tuesday Chapter||3rd Tues 1-5pm||Kawaramachi||Hankyu line|
|Kansai area concerts (no regular meetings)|
|29. Full-movement Concert||Twice yearly||Tsukaguchi||JR Hankyu line|
|30. APA Chamber Music Concert||Twice yearly in Feb & Sep||Tsukaguchi, Abiko||JR Hankyu line or Subway|
|31. Kyoto Chamber Music Concert||Twice yearly||Kitaoji||Subway|
|32. Keihan Classic Concert||Twice yearly||Neyagawashi||Keihan line|
|33. New Piano Salon||Twice yearly||Tenjinbashisuji-6chome||Hankyu line or Subway|
|34. Piano and Vocal Concert||Every 5 months||Abiko||Subway|
|35. Nishikita Salon||3 times a year in Mar, Jul & Nov||Nishinomiya-Kitaguchi||Hankyu line|
|36. Piano Duo Concert||Yearly in May|
|37. Piano (solo and duo) Concert||Twice yearly in Jun & Dec||Oji-koen||Hankyu line|
|38. String Ensemble Concert||Twice yearly in Jan & Jul||Oji-koen||Hankyu line|
|39. Baroque Concert||Once or twice yearly||Abiko||Subway|
|Kyushu area concerts (no regular meetings)|
|40. Kyushu Concert||Once yearly||Fukuoka & Kumamoto|
APA participates in ACMP’s (Associated Chamber Music Players) Going Places program, an initiative to promote international exchange by making it easier for ACMP members to find people to play with when they travel outside their home country. If you are contemplating visiting Japan for tourism or on business and wish to join ensembles during your stay, please contact APA’s POC, Sayoko Yamashita, email@example.com. APA will try to organize chamber music sessions at locations convenient to you, and we may also be able provide instruments for use during your visit.
In April, 2019 APA hosted our first visitor from the USA through Going Places. The following is her report.
On May 12, APA hosted its first international guest as part of the Associated Chamber Music Players’ (ACMP) new Going Places initiative! ACMP established Going Places in late 2018 as a way to broker opportunities for members to play chamber music while traveling abroad. As of this writing there are contacts in six countries: Germany, Belgium, Italy, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Japan. Japan’s POC is Kazumichi Yoshida, organizer of APA’s Chuo-sen group, and also a member of ACMP’s International Ambassadors Council. With a strong belief in the power of music to bring people of diverse cultures together, Kaaz has been organizing an International Music festival each spring, so Going Places was a perfect fit for him.
APA’s inaugural event began with an email from Susan Alexander, an American pianist, in February. She would be visiting her son, who teaches English in Tokyo, from late April to mid May. Could anything be arranged? Indeed it could, and a few months later, the group assembled at the JR Musashi Sakai train station and walked over to the Civic Center, where Kaaz had reserved the music room. The players got right to work, for there was a lot of music to fit into four hours: Dvorak quintet Op. 81, Dohnanyi quintet Op 1, and Brahms quartet, Op. 60, for which musicians included Sayoko Yamashita and Kaaz on violin, Takeko Kubodera on viola, and Masako Usuda on cello. Then, during the last hour, Takeko’s husband Toshiro joined in for some Mozart and Schubert trios and Susan’s son, Jeremy, turned pages.
Refreshments afforded another fun opportunity for cultural exchange. Susan introduced the group to some cookies she’d brought with her from the US that combined chocolate and mint, which was a new taste for the Japanese players. She, in turn, got to sample a confection of ume plum and natto, definitely not a combination found on American shelves! At 5:00 it was time to adjourn for dinner at a nearby shabu shabu restaurant, another new experience for Susan. Many trays of meat, glasses of umeshu, and cups of sake later, it was, sadly, time to say goodbye, and the participants dispersed to various stations along the Chuosen. It was a fantastic afternoon and evening, and everyone is hopeful that there will be more opportunities to play together in the future!
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