ENGLISH | JAPAN

Sadao Watanabe

Nowadays, problems with children, with families and with society and education have evolved into a major social problem. Problems encountered by children are frightening.

Inter-ethnic and religious strife across the world impacts on such problems and leaves children as victims. They need a decent life, not war.

Yet these problems are, in fact, a matter for the 'heart" and for the conscience of us all. Our responsibility as adults is to help build a better world for those on whom the impact of the problems is greatest - children as they represent the next generation for the future.

I strive for the chance of playing music and singing with children from around the world coming from different ethnic and race backgrounds. The music that we hear and that we write can unite the heart and soul with the realities that we live in. Music comes from nature; The rhythms come from nature; The melodies come from nature. Through music, then, we can develop a sense of acquaintance and a need to "Share The World". The "unite hearts" theme aims at developing this sense of acquaintance and peace, preserving nature and earth and creating peace for a better future and welfare for the children of the world.

Two examples will help to illustrate just what can be done. In 1995, a guide to rhythm scales was performed by the children at Tochigi prefecture, which quickly spread across Japan. The children were guided to sing and perform on a concert event. Through such an event, numerous children could feel what it is called "study"' and how to reach out and unite with each other. The event "Unite the Heart' continues to be famous throughout the world.

In 2005, the Japanese Government monitored a national supervisory agency for a Japanese International Exhibition and it was discovered that this scale considerably improved a concert performance. Children opened the event with a song that carried a message to the effect that a sense of togetherness within the global community was needed in order to settle the existing problems in the world.

Simultaneously the song "Share the World" ("unite the heart") was created and sung in a concert by children from around the world. At the "Japan Week" exhibition, "Sound of Earth", 400 children from 5 countries sang at the "Share the World" concert.

We have been asked to carry out this project by Peter F. Gontha; chairman of the prestigious 3-day "Java jazz Festival" held every year in March in Indonesia's capital city, Jakarta. We Japanese, as Asians ourselves can reach out to his strong enthusiasm and deep understanding and feel a deep sense of being involved with something that can do nothing but good.

Once again then, with the world now facing various problems such as environment, wars, inter-ethnic fighting, etc, we, as musicians, will get great pleasure from an activity such as this in knowing that we are taking part within a framework of creating a more friendly world.

Therefore, we hope very much to gain your collaboration and assistance and look forward to seeing you in March.