title_biography.jpg_DSC1237-003.jpgPhoto : Kenshu Shintsubo 


Ryoko Aoki

Ryoko Aoki holds a unique position in the field of Noh theatre as a female singer and performer. She has performed in several traditional Noh plays, historically the reserve of male actors. Above all, she is the pioneer of and inspiration for a new artistic form combining Noh with contemporary music. More than 30 works have been written for her by composers including Peter Eötvös, Toshio Hosokawa and Stefano Gervasoni. 

The singer and performer has made appearances in Tokyo, Kyoto, Long Beach, Paris, Rome, London, Dublin, Bilbao, Budapest, Berlin, Munich, Cologne and Karlsruhe among others, and at festivals including the Asia-Pacific Weeks Berlin, Bartok Festival Szombathely, Xenakis Festival in New York and the Takefu International Music Festival. She has performed with ensembles and orchestras including the Arditti Quartet, the Quatour Diotima and the Münchener Kammerorchester. 


In 2013, Ryoko Aoki gave her debut at the Teatro Real de Madrid in Wolfgang Rihm's opera The Conquest of Mexico in the role of Malinche, in a production directed by Pierre Audi. Most recently, Noriko Baba wrote her "Nopera" AOI (2016) especially for the singer, which was premiered with the Ensemble 2e2m in Paris and received further performances in Reims and Orléans. 

Highlights of Ryoko Aoki's 2017/18 season include the world premieres of two works composed for her: Toshio Hosokawa's Futari Shizuka (The Maiden from the Sea) with the Ensemble intercontemporain at the Philharmonie de Paris and Kölner Philharmonie in December, and Federico Gardella's Two Souls at the Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino in January. In February she will perform with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and Matthias Pintscher. 

As part of her Noh x Contemporary Music project, Ryoko Aoki has commissioned a series of new works for Noh singer. In 2014, she released a Noh x Contemporary Music recording, including Peter Eötvös' Harakiri. As a workshop leader, she has worked with the dance company Sasha Waltz and Guests. 

Ryoko Aoki obtained a BA and a Master of Music from the Faculty of Music at the Tokyo National University of Fine Art and Music with a focus on the Kanze school of Noh theatre, before obtaining a PhD at the University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies, with a thesis on "Women and Noh". She was appointed "Japan Cultural Envoy" by the Agency for Cultural Affairs of Japanese government in 2015 and was a featured artist at the Aichi Triennale in 2016.

 


management 
OKAMURA&COMPANY INC
Masako Okamura


Publications 
2017/1 
edited by Takashi Yokoisi   Hayakawa-shobo 1,500 Yen


magazine / newspaper 
Fashion Snap 2015/5/17Shiseido "Hanatsubaki" Woman 2013/10
The Asahi Newspaper 2010/11/28
The New York Times 2010/2/28
ITOKI Spina Kengo Kuma × Ryoko Aoki 

radio
NHK TV "NHK Haiku"  


award 



performance archive



-research

publications 

3.2013
"How Did the Tokyo Music School Influence the Birth of Female Noh Performers?
―By the Instrumentality of Ikenouchi Nobuyoshi and Kanze Sakon―"
Journal of Atomi University Faculty of Literature No.48 pp.59-74.

3.2003 
"Women Noh Performers"
Journal of the Society for the Study of Musical Drama No.10 pp.1-18.

2.2000

"Analysis of Noh and composition of Noh-Opera using a sinusoidal model"
by Ken Ito (Keio University)
Ken-Ichi Sakakibara (NTT Communication Science Laboratories)
Ryoko Aoki (Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music)
Naotosi Osaka (NTT Communication Science Laboratories)
published in "Information Processing Society of Japan" journal. 



presentations / demonstrations  
 


23.2.2014 
Daniel Recital Hall, California State University, Long Beach, CA, US

25.1.2014
"TIME WALKER" Panel discussion:Chihiro Minato × Gozo Yoshimasu × Ryoko Aoki 
Tokyo International Forum 

12.12.2013 


1.11.2012 
Hochschule for music and theatre Hannover, Germany

22.7.2012 
20th Annual Conference of the Society for the Study of Musical Drama 
National Noh Theatre 
Presentation "The Construction of Japanese Noh Theatre as an Abstract Art"

15.5.2012 
"Women and Japanese Noh Theatre" 
International Research Center
"Interweaving Cultures in Performance" 
Berlin Freie University, Germany

17.3.2012 
Panel: "Women in Noh"

"The Construction of Japanese Noh Theatre as a Masculine Art : an Analysis of its Traditional and Modern Discourses" 

27.8.2011 

Presentation at the 13th international conference of the European Association for Japanese Studies in Estonia
"The Construction of Japanese Noh Theatre as an Abstract Art : an Analysis of its Traditional and Modern Discourses" 

21.2.2011

Une matinée autour du Nô in Villa Medici, Rome
Presentation : Noh music
Demonstration of Noh "Matsukaze"


17.2.2011
Conference guilt Ⅱ at the University of Bonn
Presentation : Guilt in Japanese Noh Theatre
Demonstration of Noh "Yashima"
Toshio Hosokawa "From Japanese Folk Song"

25.2.2009
Portrait Concert of Toshio Hosokawa at Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin 


Demonstration of Noh "Matsukaze"
Toshio Hosokawa "From Japanese Folk Song"




27.11.2006 
Presentation at Noh Institute regular meeting at the Tokyo University
"Considering Women Noh Performers Now"

5.8.2006 
Demonstration of Noh play "Makiginu" at the Japan Univeristy Art Faculty
ORCNANA & APPAN International Conference


20.4.2002 
Presentation at the Society for the Study of Musical Drama
"The Possibility of Women`s Noh Performance from a Historical Perspective"



scholarship 
The British Council Japan Association
Nomura Foundation
Rohm Music Foundation


workshops

9.9.2008

Takefu International Music Festival
Noh workshop for composers

6.7.2007 
Intermediate presentations of composers' workshops for "ONGAKU×ONGYOKU"

Since 4.2007, there had been a series of 10 Noh workshops for the composers towards the upcoming performance in September. For this time, presentations of the intermediate process result were supervised by Joji Yuasa.

25.11.2005 
Noh workshop at the Hull Univeristy, U.K.

13-17.09.2005 
Noh workshop at the Inha Univeristy and Kyonhi University, Korea

20-26.6.2005 
Noh workshop at the SOAS, University of London, U.K.

1-7.9.2004
Noh workshop at the SOAS, University of London, U.K.