Hello Tokyo! 〜 ハロー、東京!

Hyde Park bird

The story of my trip to England was not meant to be a cliff hanger. My poor readers are undoubtedly going without sleep, arguing with their friends and neighbors as to whether I took up residence in the UK, or decided to return to Tokyo after all. In the end, I returned with “the wife” as planned, arriving in Tokyo on March 14. We left sunny, near-spring weather in London and returned to a rainy winter's revenge in Tokyo. Be that as it may, it is so good to be back! Home has many advantages – a shower that works every time, an electric blanket on the bed that allows me to laugh at a cold bedroom, interesting food in the refrigerator (after we went shopping, anyway).



After our day in Winchester, the last day in London was spent shopping at Harrods for gifts to take home (you didn't get yours yet? Just ask my wife – she bought one for every single person in Tokyo, I believe). This is a task I find extremely dreary. A “last lunch” at Harrods helped ease the pain. A bit.

There is nothing other to report, really. Packing up, a final dinner out, and a ride on the Heathrow Express from Paddington Station to Heathrow Airport ended the journey.
My first night home I had a craving for anything but pub food. The craving for Japanese food persisted for another day. Luckily, the choices are legion. Tempura udon did it for day 2 at home:
This trip I was away from home for roughly a month. Would I do it again? Given a couple of years to recuperate, of course. I'm occasionally asked why I don't take the choir to my own country (USA) on these tours. The answer is easy – history. Any cathedral we visit has a long list of fine musicians, many of whose music we sing. A look around any Medieval church shows the ravages of the 16th-century Reformation, as well as the work the Victorians did to restore everything (and then some) in the 19th-century. You can literally read England's history in its buildings. Add to that world-class performances of choral music available day in and day out and you've got the perfect location for choir tours. Here are two examples from Winchester Cathedral. The great Samuel Sebastian Wesley was choirmaster there, it is the first church in England that has records of having had a pipe organ (in the 11th century!), and many fine musicians have lived and worked in the building.
ご存知の方はおられると思いますが、私の国籍はアメリカです。学生たちをイギリスだけでなく、アメリカへ連れて行ったら、とよく言われます。イギリスにこだわる理由は明らかです。歴史のためです。植民地であったアメリカは現在、優れた教会音楽の伝統、そして、美しい教会はもちろんあります。しかし、比較的最近に作られた伝統です。立教の聖歌隊がよく歌う16世紀〜19世紀のイギリス音楽の現場はイギリスの大聖堂、大学チャペル、そして、王立礼拝堂など、です。イギリスの大聖堂に入ると、歴史を強く感じます。建築様式を少しでも勉強すれば、建物を歴史教科書のように読めるようになります。その中で作られた音楽と音楽家たちが活躍した場所を味わうことが出来ます。これはイギリスでしか出来ないことだから、毎回この国に戻ります。ウィンチェスター大聖堂で発見したものを例として提供します。偉大な作曲者であったS. S. ウェスレーを記念する石版、そして、17世紀聖歌隊員だった人の墓がありあす。以下の通りです。探せば、他にも音楽関係の見どころがたくさんあります。国中の大聖堂にも似たようなものがあります。

Thanks for reading! From the next post things return to normal at “The View from Tokyo.” Check back soon!

次回から、ブログのフォーカスは日本に戻ります。また来てください!ところで、ツアー中約2000枚の写真を撮りました。編集作業は少しづつしています。毎日数枚の写真をウェブアルバムにアップします。見たい方はこのページの右上、FLICKR PHOTOSをクリックしてください。


PS I am continuing to sort and edit (and delete!) the some 2000 photos I took during the trip. You can always check my Flickr photo stream (link is above on the right panel) for the latest uploaded photos. Here is one final favorite to finish this post; Hyde Park, London, at dawn.



This entry was posted in Choral ~ 聖歌隊関係, Church music ~ 教会音楽, England, Photography ~写真. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Hello Tokyo! 〜 ハロー、東京!

  1. Tim Pipkin says:

    I love your pictures Scott, why were you awake at dawn? Sorry we didn’t meet up. Maybe next time.

  2. scotto says:

    Same here, Tim. We passed fairly close on the way to Worcester, but had no time to spare. Next time,I hope. As for dawn photos, all nice people are up at that hour. Aren’t you?

  3. Nigel says:

    Dear Scott,
    I thought you were a musician, but it seems you have a journalistic side – this blog is very interesting to read, not least because of all the super photos. Some of these London churches I have never seen!
    all the best,

  4. scotto says:

    Thanks, Nigel! I have always enjoyed writing, and try not to over-describe while blogging. The temptation is to write about everything in a day, but no one finds such writing interesting. The View aims to please. Thanks to our London and Oxford hosts we did see quite a few really fine instruments that I wouldn’t have been able to arrange on my own.

  5. James Eriksson St. Mary's NSKK Mombetsu-city, Hokkaido says:

    Hello I just found this blog.

    I am hymn chooser at our very small NSKK church in Far northern Hokkaido. I became hymn chooser after worshiping here for 20 years. I download the music to our hymns. We have managed to get well on the way to recovering our NSKK hymnody. We have sung over 230 of the 58o in the hymnal that I can’t remember having sung before.
    I am hoping to correspond with you in hopes of finding more of the hymnal music online.
    Where are you organist?

  6. scotto says:

    Hello, and sorry for the delay in answering. I’m the director of sacred music at Rikkyo University in Tokyo and chapel choirmaster. As such, I do a lot of hymn choosing for the weekly services, so feel free to get in touch.
    You can mail me directly at shaw (at mark) rikkyo.ne.jp

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